NORTON SHORES, MICH. - It started as a tribute to active and past military personnel at a Mona Shores home football game.
But over the years it has expanded and the Mona Shores High School “Sailor Salute” now includes police, firefighters, paramedics and public safety workers.
“It does my heart good to have a night like this,” said Mona Shores football coach Matt Koziak.
Thursday night during ceremonies before the Mona Shores-Zeeland West football game there was a flyover by military planes and 1,500 community members joined the band on the field.
The football coach says they want to thank the individuals responsible for the American way of life.
“It's the greatest country on earth and it’s for people who serve us and protect us and make it that way,” explains Coach Koziak.
“I was in the Marine Corps and I love this,” smiled veteran Kathy Sauro.
“We take them for granted,” said Lexi Chrum. “I think it’s good we are honoring them.”
Everyone who came early to rehearse and joined the marching band to sing the National Anthem was given a patriotic tee shirt.
Active and former military personnel and public safety officers got free admission to the game.
“Fire departments and police departments, every day of the year we are on duty, ready to answer the call,” said Norton Shores firefighter Don Vanderkooi. “We get thanks now and again but this is kind of special.”
(© 2016 WZZM)