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'It's a good neighborhood:' Riverside Lakes host its first ever ceremony and parade

Posted at 10:40 PM, Jul 04, 2024

WATERLOO, Neb. (KMTV) — "We don't have those freedoms of speech, religion, and press to assemble, to petition, without the sacrifices that have been made by our fallen heroes," said Jim Meier, director of Honor and Remember Nebraska Chapter.

Part of its mission is keeping the memory of those veterans who've served, sacrificed, and died for our freedoms. He also lives at Riverside Lakes.

"It's a good neighborhood," said Meier.

And most of his 200 neighbors took part in this first-ever commemoration.

"It's a way for us to do something collectively that we couldn't do individually," said Meier.

They remembered one of their own -- Daniel Zitek who fought in the Vietnam War.

Zitek passed away in 2011 after a battle with cancer. This day brings back memories for his wife of over 30 years, Linda.

"Just the pain, it hurts," said Linda. "But, at the same time, honoring him being proud of what he did."

She received a yard sign. Her husband's photo featured alongside a U.S. flag, his branch of service, and the "Honor and Remember" flag.

The neighborhood is filled with similar yard signs, many dedicated to someone who was special to the homeowner.

After the tribute to service members, a more traditional fourth -- a time for patriotism and celebration, and some of things that make this place special.

"It's kind of like how it was back in the 40s and 50s, everyone looks for each other. Everybody knows all your neighbors," said Linda.

Meier says he now plans to make this a yearly tradition.

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