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MERIDIAN -- Several days ago we told you about the death of a Meridian soldier in Afghanistan. Specialist Thomas Murach was 22-years-old when his vehicle hit a roadside bomb while on patrol. Saturday, the folks at Meridian Speedway honored veterans and current military members.

Planes from the Nampa Warhawk Museum zipped overhead. Cars sped around the track. In the stands, members of the military stood up while everyone applauded.

Saturday's Military Appreciation Night honored active military members and veterans from all different branches.

Veteran Mike Klem remembers when he came home from Vietnam.

People would walk away from us or give us a wide berth, regarding coming back into the airports and stuff. But that's changed, that's changed a whole bunch, said Klem.

Klem said things have changed for veterans since then.

The people of this country realize now what the military has done and continues to do, said Klem.

There was also a display of old military vehicles from the Idaho Military Vehicle Preservation Association.

A lot of us were in the military or served and we all have an interest in restoring these older vehicles and keeping them on the road, said Barry McCahill, a member of the Idaho Military Vehicle Preservation Association.

McCahill and other club members said their vehicles were a big hit with the other vets. Despite the age of the vehicles, McCahill said they try to keep them authentic and in good shape.

They don't have air conditioning and they don't have power-steering. They don't have the modern amenities, but it runs, said McCahill.

In the midst of all the celebration, Klem wanted everyone to keep in mind the veterans that couldn't be there on Saturday.

The folks that didn't get to come home, whether they are POW's or KIA's killed in action, those people, they're the heroes. They're the ones that should receive all this, said Klem.

If you'd like to check out those military vehicles for yourself, you can go for free. They'll be showing June 8th and 9th in Fruitland. The event will include a tank crushing a car.

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