Veterans, their families and supporters were out in force on Sunday to recognize our armed forces and their contribution to freedom here at home and around the world.
Celebrations in downtown Santa Barbara kicked off with an airshow as servicemen and women took to the streets in honor of our nation’s armed services. Parade Grand Marshall Colonel John Fer, a Vietnam prisoner of war who sometimes shared a cell with Senator John McCain, says he’s always proud to be of service.
Colonel Fer was flying over Vietnam back in 1967 when his aircraft was shot down behind enemy lines. He and two other surviving crew members were taken to the Hanoi Hilton where they were held prisoner for some six years.
Clare and Chuck Theriot are proud parents of a wounded soldier, son Ryan. The family says the young Theriot was the victim of an I.E.D. blast, along with other soldiers. Though Theriot is recovering, one of his fellow solders lost all four of his limbs.
Theriot’s family says the soldier who lost his limbs is an inspiration to their son and all soldiers who are wounded and now recovering. It’s estimated there are about one-million veterans in California. Many federal offices, schools and banks are closed Monday in observance of Veteran’s Day.