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(WBIR) Vietnam veterans in Monroe County received a hero's welcome home.

On Friday afternoon, people lined New Highway 68 from Madisonville to Sweetwater for the "Welcome Home Celebration." Their purpose was to give those Vietnam veterans the "thank you" many of them did not see when they first came home from war.

"A lot of guys got spit on, and called 'baby killers' and such. So just that welcome home that we got back in the sixties and early seventies changed a lot of lives," said Fred Greb, with the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 93.

Several groups came out to support the veterans, including the East Tennessee Patriot Guard Riders.

"I just got a phone call about an hour ago from a guy who didn't know that we were doing this and he thought it was the most awesome thing that finally a generation has woken up to say 'Thank you.' It was all about respect," said Morgan Clough, with the East Tennessee Patriot Guard Riders.

The Mountain Valley Blue Star Mothers hosted the celebration.

After the procession, a private ceremony was held at the VFW Post 5156 in Sweetwater.

"Puts a little bit more of a taste back in my mouth for America. Surely does," said Corporal Ronnie Cordell, who served in the 2nd Battalion 5th Marines. "Semper Fi and thank you."

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