U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann and U.S. Air Force Military Deputy for Acquisition Arnie Bunch talk about the armed forces and today’s parade. (Photo: Eric Wise)

The 68th annual Armed Forces Day Parade took place today in downtown Chattanooga.

U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN) and U.S. Air Force Military Deputy for Acquisition Arnie Bunch spoke before the event.

“This is the day that our great city … honors its veterans and active military duty,” Fleischmann said. “Every year we choose a different branch to honor, and this year it’s the great United States Air Force.”

Bunch, who grew up in Morristown, Tennessee, said he is excited to be back in his home state and in Chattanooga.

“It’s remarkable to learn about the continuous number of years that the community has done this, and just the strong support from the community for the veterans and the armed forces,” Bunch said. “This is not a one-day event; it’s something that many people in the community live each and every day.”

Armed Forces Day is observed nationally on May 20 as a “single holiday for citizens to come together and thank our military members for their patriotic service in support of our country.” The day was established on Aug. 31, 1949, as a replacement for separate Army, Navy, Marine and Air Force days.

Watch our coverage of the parade and see more photos below.

Schools from across Chattanooga marched in today’s 68th annual Armed Forces Day Parade (Photo: Eric Wise)

Schools across Chattanooga marched in today’s 68th Annual Armed Forces Day Parade. (Photo: Eric Wise)

Veterans drove through the parade in old war-time vehicles. (Photo: Eric Wise)

Several different armed forces units from across the Chattanooga-area participated in today’s parade. (Photo: Eric Wise)

Eric Wise is a contributing writer. He is currently attending UTC, where he is a staff writer for the school newspaper, The University Echo. He also serves as the alumni relations chairman for his fraternity.

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