By Brooke Shafer

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – At Triangle Park, off Veterans Way in Hialeah, city leaders and first responders held an event to honor those how have served in the US armed forces this Veterans Day.

Wednesday morning’s tribute was held mostly virtually because of the coronavirus


“We have men and women around the world who protect our freedoms and our way of life in this great country,” said Hialeah Mayor Carlos Hernandez.

The ceremony around 10 a.m. included a line of first responders and an Honor Guard salute.

Miami-Dade County’s Mayor-Elect Daniella Levine Cava was among the local leaders who attended Wednesday morning’s event.

“Today is a very, very important day across our nation in which we stop, and we remember, and we honor, and give thanks,” she said.

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Also among the small crowd of people were veterans Herbert Patterson and Michael Bell.

Bell, who is now the CEO of Hialeah Hospital, served in the Air Force from 1989 to 1993.

“For me as a veteran, I’m here because I represent those who cannot be here,” he said. “I’m incredibly proud to be a veteran but I’m incredibly proud of other veterans and how they continue to make us stronger.”

“It’s nice to honor the veterans that served, and all the ones that are serving, and the first responders too,” said Patterson who served four years in the Army with two tours in Vietnam. “It’s not a shopping day. It’s a day to honor people.”