Arlington Heights honors fallen heroes with Memorial Day Parade

Flags were waving and candy was flying all along the route of the 105th Arlington Heights Memorial Day Parade.

All the nation's fallen heroes are being honored with a parade and a ceremony including 59 people from Arlington Heights who have died in wars from the Civil War to Afghanistan.

About 2,000 people marched in the parade, many of them active-duty sailors and soldiers.

All along the parade route, there was a huge outpouring of gratitude for the sacrifice of our military members, the men and women who have given their lives while serving our country.

Katie Stack, the wife of the late Lance Corporal James Stack, described the feeling of being surrounded. 

"It's kind of like butterflies in my stomach in the most somber way," she said.

"Obviously it's really hard for me. Just everything is about my husband and the sacrifice that he gave. But then that also can put a smile on my face too. To see all the people and having them thank me for my husband's sacrifice. I truly cannot put it into words," Stack said.

Kathy Strong, from Northern California, was a special guest speaker this year, and shared the story of her connection to special forces, Sergeant First Class James Moreland.

As a 12-year-old girl, she put on his MIA bracelet. He had gone missing on February 7, 1968 in Vietnam. Strong wore the bracelet for 38 years, until Moreland's remains were located and he was brought home.

"I flew to Alabama for the funeral and with his family's permission I buried the bracelet with him," Strong said.

While neither Strong nor Moreland have ties to Arlington Heights, Strong felt it was the perfect place to leave a memorial.

"I'm here to honor James. I decided several years ago that I was going to place a memorial brick for him in all 50 states and today is number 38."

Thousands turned out to honor and remember our fallen heroes. The parade was followed by a moving ceremony at Memorial Park.