A twenty-one gun salute was part of the annual Veterans Day service in Meridian, one of the ways people in the area chose to honor military men and women, past and present.
"Today we are here celebrating Veterans Day. It is a tradition that started in 1918 when the war ended," said Danny Smith, commander, VFW Post 79. "We come here to recognize all the veterans who have given their lives and talents for the freedoms we have."
The crowd at Meridian's Doughboy Monument spread through the streets, a sign of the appreciation and support the Meridian community has for veterans.
"It was such a hard delivery because I saw the emotions in the audience and I saw the love that each of these vets had for our country," said Mayor Cheri Barry.
Barry said Veterans Day should be celebrated every day. She said she can't describe the appreciation she has for the men and woman who have made sacrifices for our freedom and for the servicemen and women who continue to put themselves in harms way for our country.
"I hope they took away knowing that this community cares about them," said Barry. "I think they know this community loves and respects them for that they did for our country."
As James Moultrie watched the ceremony, his mind drifted back to the days of the Vietnam War. His time in the U.S. Marine Corps was during that tumultuous period for our country. He said he is dedicated to making sure our current servicemen and woman are in our thoughts.
"We are still together because of the individuals we have in Iraq and Afghanistan," said Moultrie. "I'm hoping that they will come home soon."
Without a doubt, many in the audience on this beautiful fall day shared that sentiment.