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Thousands Gather On Monument Circle For 500 Festival Memorial Service

Last updated on Monday, May 30, 2011

(INDIANAPOLIS, IN) - Thousands of Hoosiers and well wishers gathered on Monument Circle for the 500 Festival Memorial Service.

They honored the Hoosier men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice in service to the nation.

It was a somber service notable for gray skies and the dignitaries in attendance.

Governor Mitch Daniels, Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, 500 Festival Board Chairman Tom McGowan and keynote speaker Army General Peter Chiarelli were among those present for the ceremony.

Chiarelli, Vice Chief of Staff for the U.S. Army says American troops have remained unwavering in their service and support of America.

The memorial is the 500 Festival's way of honoring troops.

It also helps usher in Indy 500 race weekend.

Chiarelli says he's a race fan who grew up watching with his dad on television, but says this will be his first real Indianapolis 500 experience.

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