Veterans honored at Waukesha North High School

WAUKESHA -- It's a weekend to honor our country's bravest. We salute the men and women who served stateside and overseas, but also during times of peace and war.

And at Waukesha North High school, our nation's veterans were honored.

Vietnam veteran Eric Holmes says presenting the stars and stripes is always an emotional time, full of reflection.

"I've cried at more of these ceremonies than I can shake a stick at," said Holmes.

The army veteran earned the Purple Heart in 1968 for his brave actions as a member of the 11th Armoured Calvary.

But when Holmes returned to the states, he said some didn't see him as a hero.

"I was dating a girl... she found out I was a Vietnam vet, I was a piece of garbage," said Holmes.

44 years later, it's a much different tone for Holmes and others at Waukesha North High School.

"My grandfather is a veteran and I have good friends who are veterans as well Iraq and so I feel very strongly to support our troops," said Eric Sindic.

It's a weekend to support our troops, but some say it's also a time to recognize that Veterans Day isn't just a day off of work.

"I do think it's overlooked," said Glen Ehlke, a Korean War veteran. "I think we need to get more people out here to recognize the past and the veterans who are serving today."

And many of the veterans say a simple 'thank you' goes a long way.

"This attitude when you say 'welcome home brother' it's a true one it's right from the heart," said Holmes.

There's a milestone this weekend. In fact, it's the 237th birthday of the United States Marine Corps.

2012 has also been declared "the year of the veteran" in Wisconsin.