AIKEN, SC (WFXG) - People filled the streets of downtown Aiken today to celebrate Memorial Day weekend with the annual parade.
Army veteran Richard Couillard has been coming to the parade for five years and says Memorial Day events bring up a mix of emotions
"You're feeling praise and all your fellows are out here and you run into them and you're honoring the ones that are alive, and then it's also a mourning service. Because you actually know people who have died fighting for this country," Couillard says.
He also says it's nice to be able to watch parades now that he's a veteran.
"It brings back a lot of memories. Being in the service so long, you march in so many parades, you know, and it's nice to be on this end of it sometimes, watching it and enjoying it," he says.
The Aiken chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution also came out to show their support for fallen military by handing out American flags to parade watchers.
"There's just a lot of retired military people here and they welcome the fact that we are giving out the flag and keeping the memory alive of our fallen soldiers," says chapter Vice Regent Gail Britton.
And Couillard hopes people take time to remember the true meaning behind Memorial Day.
"Say a prayer not only for the fallen, but for the parents and the wives and the children who lost their fathers and their mothers over there, and the grandparents. You know, it gives them a day to remember them."
And we want to thank all members of the armed forces, past and present, for their service to this country.