The musket fire pierced the brisk, November air of Hyannis like an awakening clap of thunder.
A perfectly rendered version of the Marine Corps Hymn by the Barnstable High School Marching Band measured the cadence of marching feet.
The Star Spangled Banner... The Pledge of Allegiance... and the humbling words of Rear Admiral Rabbi Harold L. Robinson of the Cape Cod Synagogue in Hyannis reminded about 200 spectators and veterans of the price of freedom.
And a collective "Amen" at the close of his convocation prayer seemed to unify all those in attendance on the Hyannis Village Green Sunday morning as local officials, politicians, dignitaries and veterans joined together to lay wreaths to honor our fallen heroes as well as our living ones.
Speeches were also made by Cape Cod Veterans Agent Ed Merigan, Barnstable Town Council President Fred Chirigotis and 32-year US Air Force veteran Lt. Colonel Patrick McNamara, Retired, of Marstons Mills.
McNamara spoke of his service and thanked his father, Robert McNamara, who sat in the audience. The elder McNamara was a Lt. Colonel in the US Army Air Corps during World War II.
Local veterans organizations were well-represented with veterans on hand from World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam and the Gulf War as well as former troops who served recently in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Few words could have struck more of an emotional chord than when Lt. Col. Patrick McNamara said, simply, "Thank you, Dad."
Ceremonies continued past noon at the Korean War Veterans Memorial at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Park overlooking Lewis Bay in Hyannis.