The annual Fourth of July Parade returned to the streets of Lakewood on Saturday, drawing thousands of people for fun and a good cause.
A procession of people and floats rolled down the street in the Dallas neighborhood while families took in the time-honored tradition.
The parade's return this year was extra special for neighbors. The parade was canceled in 2020 because of the pandemic.
“This parade started in the 1950s," said GP Theriot, a board member for the parade. "To give you an idea, I was in this parade when I was a little kid.”
He said the parade is also bringing awareness to the Brain Treatment Foundation, which supports veterans with brain injuries and PTSD, with the goal of raising $100,000.
Theriot said a fundraiser through Benchmark Mortgage, where he works, has raised $1 million for the foundation. He hoped a raffle for a 2019 Jeep Wrangler that was parked on his front lawn Saturday will raise even more.
“I missed two Fourth of July’s because I was deployed overseas, so just to be here and know the true meaning of our independence and our freedom, it means so much to me," Theriot said. "This is probably my favorite day of the year."