Panama City Beach VFW, AMVets Honor Veterans on Independence Day

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PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WJHG-WECP) -- While several Fourth of July parades were going on the morning of Independence Day, local veterans with the VFW and AMVets held a more somber ceremony, honoring the vets who have served and died for this country.

The annual celebration, sponsored by the Bay County Veterans Council and the Panama City Beach City Council, took place at Aaron Bessant Park Tuesday morning at the Veterans' Memorial.

Community members took time to speak about the unwavering service of the military.

For one Army and Air Force veteran, these kinds of ceremonies are especially important.

"This is more sincere to me as far as the purpose of remembering and honoring the birth of our nation," Vietnam Vet Boo Tortorella said. "Don't misunderstand me, the parades are fine. People have their fun and everything they should celebrate, but they should also take a moment and reflect.

Harri Brax, who coordinates the annual event, also discussed the many veterans' service clubs in the community.