COLORADO SPRINGS- Hundreds of people paid their respect to fallen heroes at the Pikes Peak National Cemetery on Memorial Day.

After how limited the last few ceremonies were because of the pandemic many said it was important for them to show their respects and visit their loved ones this year.

More than 3,500 veterans have been laid to rest at the Pikes Peak National Cemetery since it was dedicated a little over three years ago.

The ceremony paid tribute to them and all who have served. From a moment of silence, to cannon volleys, wreath laying to pay tribute to all of the military branches. While also sharing the importance of Memorial Day.

Joseph Sandoval, a U.S. Navy veteran said his father served in the Army as a staff sergeant for 23 years before passing away. But said his father inspired a family tradition.

“My father, my brother, a lot of people before me, my grandpa and all of them have served in the military. So it’s kind of a family thing,” Sandoval said.

Sandoval said it was important for him to visit his father on a day like Memorial Day to let him know he is never forgotten.

“Whether you have someone here or somewhere else just coming down and never letting them never be forgotten is huge for me. If we just allow ourselves to, you know, just look back and remember and wonder why we have this great nation. I encourage you to do that and just say thank you,” Sandoval said.

Dee Ricketts, wife of an U.S. Air Force veteran, said she tries to visit her husband often and brings him little pieces of home to share.

“I always bring a flag because that was important. I fly a flag at home everyday. I brought these flowers because they are peonies and I grew them in our backyard and he was always amazed at the flowers I grew. So rather than buying anything this I know is very special to me and very special to him,” Ricketts said.

Ricketts husband served in the U.S. Air Force for four years before creating weather satellites for the military.

“He was so proud of the fact that he had been in the Air Force. We had moved here from Southern California and We had Air Force football tickets, season tickets every year because it was just part of who he was,” Ricketts said.

Sandoval and Ricketts said it does not need to be a holiday to remember those you have lost and it’s the pride of loving a veteran and their country that unites everyone.

“It’s about everybody here in this memorial service, everybody that’s out here joining in, remembering,” Sandoval said.

The Pikes Peak National Cemetery is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to visit.