Sitting on the steps of the Cayuga County Courthouse, Reece Coates held her dog Church and told her children why they were there: to pay their respects.
Late Monday morning, Coates was one of hundreds of people who attended the Memorial Day parade in downtown Auburn, and while her son and daughter were excited to see the police cars and fire trucks, she said there was a more important reason to participate.
"We have family members in the service and we want to pay our respects," she said. "I want them to know (Memorial Day) is not just a cookout. We have to come and pay our respects."
The annual parade began at 11 a.m. at the corner of Genesee and Fulton streets and ended at Veterans Memorial Park, where there was a wreath-laying ceremony at around noon. Throughout the parade, children could be seen smiling and waving at the procession of local veterans, law enforcement and students who honked horns and tossed candy to the crowd.