One of my favorite traditions in Tulsa is the annual Veterans Day parade.

My late grandfathers both served in World War II, and my sister-in-law serves as a doctor for the United States Air Force.

I love that our city goes all out to pay its respects to those who have served. It’s hard not to get a little misty-eyed seeing the brave men and women carrying flags on floats and shaking the hands of any veterans they see along the parade route.


Marines saluting one another at the 2015 Tulsa Veterans Day parade. CARY ASPINWALL/The Frontier

I usually just grab my iPhone and shoot while watching like everyone else. This year, I grabbed one of our real cameras from the office so I could shoot a little better. (I’m no pro, but those of us who started out as community journalists know how to shoot our own pics in a pinch.)

Children waived flags and chanted “U-S-A” all along the parade route. I saw young Marines shaking the hands of older Marines. And I saw proud Muslim Americans marching to honor our country with their heads held high, despite any detractors.


A little boy watches the 2015 Tulsa Veterans Day parade with his family. CARY ASPINWALL/The Frontier

I also saw dogs and Shriners driving tiny cars, which are some of my other favorite things about parades.


One of the Akdar Shriners driving in the 2015 Tulsa Veterans Day. CARY ASPINWALL/The Frontier


A patriotic dog marching in the 2015 Tulsa Veterans Day parade. CARY ASPINWALL/The Frontier