PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) —– This day in 1918, the United States signed an armistice with Germany which marked the end of World War I and the beginning of what we now know as Veterans Day.
The Bay County Board of County Commissioners and the Bay County Veterans Council teamed up to host the annual Veterans Day Parade and ceremony in remembrance of all those who have answered the call to serve.
The nearly 1.5-mile-long parade began at Oakland Terrace Elementary and finished at the Bay County Government Center.
120 Bay High School ROTC students participated in the parade.
“I tell them ‘Listen, there’s no better way to respect those veterans than to wear your uniform, proudly wear it correctly,” JROTC Senior Instructor Major Jeff Baumgart said. “Wear with honor and march the best that you can so that the veterans that are at that parade will see them and that they’ll feel a sense of pride for the service that they gave and that the younger generation is carrying on with that pride.”
“It means a lot to me because we get to remember the fallen warriors and the ones who put their lives on the line just for us to have a great, everyday life,” Bay High School JROTC First Lieutenant Emily Rollins said.
Afterward, the commission held a ceremony where the commander of the 325th Fighter Wing Colonel George Watkins spoke.
“Enjoying freedoms and privileges that is really in many ways unparalleled in human history,” Watkins said. “And we’ve done it because people have done their part because people like you and others like you have decided to serve something greater than yourself.”
Watkins and Commander Michael Mosi of the Naval Support Activity Panama City laid a wreath in remembrance of all those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.
The day was then concluded by the sound of freedom.