The ninth annual veterans ceremony and parade was held in downtown London on Saturday, with Laurel County Judge-Executive David Westerfield and London Mayor Troy Rudder spearheading the ceremony in front of the Laurel County Courthouse.

"Without you, we wouldn't be here," said Westerfield. "We thank you for your service."

Highlighting the ceremony was a 21-gun salute by the Keavy DAV, followed by the playing of "Taps" to honor those military personnel who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country, as well as those survivors of war who are no longer living.

Veterans Day is recognized on November 11 as the date and time of the surrender of World War I. First known as Armistice Day, the name was changed in 1945 to honor not just those veterans who died in World War I but to honor all military personnel. In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the bill recognizing Veterans Day as a national holiday.

The annual veterans ceremony and parade is celebrated locally on the first Saturday of November each year and was set by Westerfield when he took office in 2010.

njohnson@sentinel-echo.com

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