MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - People gathered in downtown Memphis Monday for the annual Veterans Day Parade.
But this year’s parade happened on the same week Congress begins holding public hearings that could lead to the president’s impeachment.
The hearings are certain to highlight deep political divides across the country, but people at the Veterans Day Parade say the parade serves as an example of something that can bridge that divide.
Roy and Patty Bridges watched their grandson, an ROTC member, march in the parade. They also wanted to pay respects to all who served.
"We got so busy lives, we don't even realize how much people sacrifice," said Roy Bridges. "There's no greater honor than to be able to serve your country and give everybody the rights to live like we do."
It's a message George Thomas shares.
"Some of them gave their life. Some of them gave their time. You know, you can't never repay them back," said Thomas.
It’s a message Vietnam veteran Charles Riley appreciates.
"Well, at least they showing some kind of respect for us because we went over there," said Riley.
But amid the pomp, circumstance and platitudes of appreciation, is honoring our veterans all people can agree on nowadays?
"On the outside looking in, this seems like the only thing that brings us together," said Thomas. "But you got to start somewhere."
Patty Bridges thinks the divisions among people are overstated.
“I think the politicians are more divided than the people are,” she said.
Riley declined to talk about politics but said he hoped Americans would come together beyond the Veterans Day Parade.
“The way it’s divided, it’s gone to have to get better,” said Riley. “It’s gone have to get better.”