BOSTON (CBS) — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh was among the attendees of an annual Memorial Day service at the Gardens at Gethsemane Cemetery.

Hundreds gathered to remember soldiers who had made the ultimate sacrifice for their country and honor those still serving.

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Lt. Colonel Brandon Teague, who was awarded in Silver Medal for his time in Afganistan, was the keynote speaker.

“We live in the greatest country on earth and it’s because of the sacrifices of those that we honor here today,” said Teague, who was deployed to Afganistan five times and Iraq twice.

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Other speakers at the ceremony included State Senator Mike Rush, the mayor, and Carlos Arrendondo, a gold star parent and Boston Bombing hero.

Walsh said, “All of our fallen heroes helped lay the path that has allowed our city and our country to move forward. We are forever grateful.”

Arrendondo’s son Alex was killed during his second deployment to Iraq in 2004. At Monday’s ceremony, Arrendondo read some of Alex’s words aloud. “I know how much you love and support me and that keeps me going. I’m proud to be fighting for my country,” he had said.

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The event started 50 years ago as a way to honor Paul Reid, the first West Roxbury resident killed in the Vietnam War. Now it is an annual reminder of Reid and everyone who chooses to serve.

“Never forget there are thousands deployed overseas today defending that freedom and ready to make the ultimate sacrifice,” said Teague.