(WIBW) Emporia, KS--As the parade works down Commercial Street, spectators and Veterans in Emporia pay tribute to those who have fought for the United States.
Lydia Rider's nephew is currently serving in Afghanistan. She is out to thank veterans like her father and other nephews who have spent time in the armed forces.
"Our nation is great because of them and all the sacrifices they have made for our country," she said.
"A lot of us don't understand that until it hits home. This is what America is all about; right here in Emporia, Kansas."
What makes Veterans Day different in Emporia is that it actually began here 60 years ago. Emporia native Alvin King pushed for changing the name of Armistice Day to "Veterans Day" in 1953. President Eisenhower signed the bill officially creating Veterans Day in 1954.
"I think it's really neat that Emporia is where it came forward and was birthed, the idea of Veterans Day being so important," said veteran and Emporia native Steve Quandt. "It's great to be from here"
After the parade the city held a Memorial service to pay formal respects to those who served.
"As the years go by, you think a lot more about your service and how much it means to your country," Navy veteran Robert Bennett said.
"I think when you're younger you probably don't think about it as much. But as the years go on, it gets more emotional."