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South Florida Celebrates Veterans Day

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(Source:AP/Rob Carr)

(Source:AP/Rob Carr)

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Veterans were honored with several events around South Florida Friday

On Miami Beach, a parade was held down Washington Avenue saluting veterans. Following the parade, Commissioner Jerry Libbin will spoke along with other presenters to commence the wreath laying ceremony and 21-gun salute at Flamingo Park. A moment of silence was held at 11am in honor of our First World War Armistice Day Tradition.

“Thank you for all the hard work you’ve done for us. You’re the reason why I’m here. I go to school, I’m safe.,” Miami Beach resident Varlie Velasquez told a veteran at the event. “I really appreciate everything they’ve done for us.”

“It’s all about those who have gone before us that have laid down the foundation for our freedoms and those that are serving right now overseas and those who are coming in the future,” said Petty Officer Carlos Suaraz.

Commissioner Libbin, an active supporter of local veterans, has recently introduced several city initiatives which support local veterans including a newly and unanimously passed ordinance that gives vendor preference to veteran-owned businesses bidding on contracts for goods and services. He also introduced an initiative to bestow a key to the city of Miami Beach for any resident veteran returning from Iraq, Iran or Afghanistan.

In Homestead, The Veterans Post 4127 of Homestead is sponsored the 25th Annual Veterans Day Parade which began at Losner Park. Military commands, local businesses, Boy Scout groups, school bands, horse clubs, Shriners, and other organizations took part in the grand parade.

Before the parade, a ceremony was held at Losner Park Memorial Monument honoring a group of World War II Veterans. Representatives from the Miami French Embassy awarded the veterans with the French Legion of Honour for having fought in France during WWII. In addition to the ceremony, another group of veterans will be sworn-in as US citizens.

The Miami Heat aren’t letting the ongoing lockout keep them from celebrating the holiday. The team held a special youth basketball clinic  for children of military families at United States Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) headquarters in Doral. Heat President Pat Riley and Heat Legend Tim Hardaway made a special appearance, along with several other players and staff.

In Broward County, fallen Marine SGT. Marlon E. Myrie, 25 of Oakland Park.  was honored with a brick in the wall of honor at the Sandy Ninninger statue on the Riverwalk in Downtown Fort Lauderdale.  Sgt. Myrie was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 8th Marine Division and was killed in action on June 25, 2010. The event was held by the  the William C. Morris POST 36, American Legion, Sons of American Legion, American Legion Riders, and Ladies Auxilliary.

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