CLEVELAND - Hundreds gathered in downtown Cleveland Sunday in support of active duty troops, veterans and fallen Ohio heroes for the 15th annual Rally for Troops.
"I know a lot of people feel the wars have wound down and we don't need to do this but if you're a veteran or a family member whose lost a loved on in the war, it's every anniversary, every birthday, every holiday you're loved one is not there," said rally organizer John Kikol.
Kikol says it's important for service men and women to know when they return home that people in Northeast Ohio supported their efforts and prayed for their safe return.
The names of more than 200 of Ohio's fallen service members were read out loud to honor their service and sacrifice. It's a moment several Gold Star mothers in attendance say they will never forget. Including Nancy Krestan, her son Army Specialist Adam Hamilton, 22, killed in action in 2011 while serving in Afghanistan.
"I miss him," said Krestan. "It's really hard for me to say his name out loud in public and not even be able to touch him and look at him."
It's a feeling Marianne Scherry shares. Her son Lance Corporal Daniel "Danny" Scherry, a Marine killed in action in Iraq in 2007.
"We don't want them to ever be forgotten and as the years go by I think that's our biggest fear that people will forget them their names," said Scherry. "This is so empowering to know they're being remembered."