LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — As many as 5,000 people participated in the annual Veterans Day Parade in downtown Las Vegas on Friday.
The parade kicked off at 4th Street and Gass Avenue and then headed north to Stewart Avenue.
The event is held by the Veterans Action group and is one of the biggest Veterans Day parades on the west coast.
The parade started with a flyover honoring veterans at 10 a.m.
There were military vehicles, vintage cars, and motorcycle groups on the parade route.
Several marching bands, dance teams, youth groups, and businesses are expected to be involved.
Don Lee Ibarra of Las Vegas took in all the sights on Friday all while giving thanks to the men and women who have served.
“I do appreciate all the freedoms that we have as Americans and we’re out here to support,” Ibarra said.
Members of the National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troops Motorcycle Club were part of the procession.
The buffalo soldiers were the first all black-regiment established by congress and were made up of former slaves, freemen, and civil war soldiers.
Niguel Williams is a safety officer with the National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troops Motorcycle Club and described the importance of tradition.
“It’s up to us to kind of keep that legacy going, to keep the tradition alive. Motorcycle and military go hand and hand, and they always have since the inception of the motorcycle,” Williams said.
Rick Golphin is the president of the National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troops Motorcycle Club and described the importance of the club.
“I think over the years we’ve done a good job of letting people know about the 9th and 10th calvary and the other all-black units that were created post-civil war,” Golphin said.
Teresa Wright of Las Vegas took in the sights and sounds of the day’s events and described the importance of honoring veterans.
“These kids need to realize that things aren’t given to them anymore if it wasn’t for our military, none of us would have this,” Wright said.
Luis Ramirez brought his two young grandchildren to the parade as a way of honoring the past and present.
“We gotta teach them about what happened in the past and show them what’s new in the future,” he said.
Afterward, an event is being held at the Nevada Veterans Memorial which is located at the Grant Sawyer State Building at Las Vegas Boulevard and Washington Avenue.