For more than 200 years service men and women have put their lives on the line for our country.
And Saturday, they were honored at the Central Texas Community Veterans Day Parade.
For hundreds of Central Texas like Shelly Bates, Saturday's parade is all about one thing.
"I'm out here to support the veterans and all of those who served on be half of our country," said Killeen resident Shelly Bates.
While honoring and thanking our military during the parade, she made sure her children were aware of what the day is all about.
"It's very important that they're aware of the struggles and also the victory," said Bates.
The streets of downtown Killeen were lined with men, women and children, showing their American pride.
Thanking the military members that made it possible, and those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
"We also honor those that have passed, regardless if it was in the heat of battle or not," said Army veteran Marty Martinez.
"Their legacy affirms that no matter what confronts us or what trials we face there's no challenge we cannot overcome," said Army veteran Elijah King.
Today there are more than 22 million veterans in America, but on days like Saturday, it's wasn't only about honoring the past, but also the present.
"It's for all veterans, those that have served, and those that are serving presently," said Martinez.
As Bates continued to do her part thanking our service members, she takes pride knowing someday her son could be the one people thank.
"My son is in the ROTC, you know perhaps he may go into the military in the future and serve his country in that manner," said Bates.