SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - The Coastal Empire's appreciation of the military was evident in the many different events in the area that were dedicated to saying thank you to veterans.
That included one event in Savannah for a group that didn't always hear gratitude for what they did.
It was a weekend to honor all veterans - and remember that some weren't always treated to that courtesy.
"We have come a long way since we came back from Vietnam," said Richard Noel, 2016-2017 Chatham County Veteran of the Year. "We thank them very much from that standpoint."
Before the various Veterans Day parades and other events to celebrate service all across the Coastal Empire, Vietnam Veterans marked their contributions at an event of their own in Savannah's Emmet Park.
"It means so much to remind the public of the sacrifice of our men and women who served in the military," said Edward Wexler, 2017-2018 Chatham County Veteran of the Year.
"The fact that they get to get together to commemorate the veterans, they like cause is really important from that standpoint," Noel said.
While they acknowledged their own, the Vietnam Veterans event also offered tribute to all who served.
"It gives us an opportunity to give back. It's a healing opportunity for a lot of folks," Noel said.
This whole Veterans Day commemoration should let people know that there are still warriors out there who are paying the price for everybody's freedom, and not everybody comes home safe and soundly and we need to not lose sight of that fact,"
Their own experience is the reason the Vietnam Veterans choose to include everyone in their ceremony.
"We don't feel like we got welcomed back, but it gives us a chance to make sure that soldiers today who are coming back, people who are separating, veterans that need help to get on down the road, if we pay it forward and work with them, it all makes a big difference. It heals us; helps them also," Noel said.
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