LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — With parades and reflective ceremonies, Californians paid their respects on Memorial Day to those who made the ultimate sacrifice serving their country.

An eight-foot bronze sculpture honoring Pasadena-area members of the military killed in Iraq, Afghanistan and battling terrorism was unveiled at Defenders Park in Pasadena.

The Enduring Heroes Memorial depicts a combat solider triumphantly holding the American flag, sculpted by Christopher Slatoff. The monument recognizes soldiers from Pasadena, Altadena, La Canada-Flintridge and San Marino.

In Venice, a restored Vietnam War POW/MIA mural that had been been vandalized was rededicated.

In Riverside, thousands of motorcyclists roared through the streets for the annual West Coast Thunder ride in honor of lost service men and women.


A ceremony was held at Riverside National Cemetery to remember the fallen military members of the United States.

In the San Fernando Valley, the 28th annual Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade took place at Sherman Way and Owensmouth Avenue and head east on Sherman Way to Cozycroft Avenue. Its theme was “Saluting the Price of Freedom.”

In the South Bay, what is billed as the Southland’s largest annual Memorial Day observance took place at Green Hills Memorial Park in Rancho Palos Verdes.

The 32nd annual observance featured flyovers by a U.S. Navy C-130 Hercules transport aircraft, an Army National Guard Hawkeye helicopter and vintage SNJ-5 and CJ-6A trainer aircraft; a special performance by the 21st Century Skydiving Team; a parade of colors presented by members of the armed forces, veterans groups, police officers, firefighters, K-9 teams and Junior ROTC units; a display of Vietnam era military ambulances; wreath-laying with a 21-gun salute and the playing of “Taps”; and several musical performances.

In Boyle Heights, the 70th annual 24-hour Memorial Day Vigil at the war memorial in Cinco Puntos on Cesar E. Chavez Avenue concluded at 10 a.m. At least one person stood guard throughout the vigil.

(©2017 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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