NORMAN — Miniature American flags were waved around in the air as people shouted “thank you” to troops who marched down the street Sunday afternoon during the Veterans Day parade.
“There’s our guy,” said Mark Pelfrey, of Norman, as his son-in-law, Ryan Trisel, came into view. The soldier waved to his family as they stood there with beaming smiles waving back.
Trisel’s wife, Ann, said he just got back from Kuwait about five months ago after being deployed for a year.
“I support him and everything he does,” she said.
While temperatures were in the mid 40s, that didn’t deter the family and many others from showing their support Sunday for troops and veterans.
“If he has to do it, I have to do it,” Ann said, “even if it’s cold.”
Pelfrey said it is important to support troops and show unity, especially after an election year.
The cold wind caused tears to roll down the faces of some, but even in the cold, people remained standing, waving and smiling.
“They (the soldiers) have had to brave a lot more than this,” said Carolyn Bonge, of Norman.
Bonge’s husband, Marc, said it very simply: “We love our country. We love the people who served and appreciate them.” Both had fathers who served in previous wars.
Nicole Kramer, of Norman, said her grandfather served in both World War I and II. She attended the parade with a friend and several bundled-up children.
“It’s important to appreciate them and honor them, and it’s important for the kids to understand,” Kramer said. “As generations go, people don’t appreciate them as much.”
She said they came out to support the troops and veterans, whether they come down with the flu or not. It was easy to tell others felt the same way as they stood bundled up, continuing to wave flags and watching those in the parade pass by.