CHICAGO (CBS) — Americans across the country are paying tribute to our nation’s military men and women for Veterans Day, and in west suburban Downers Grove, hundreds of people gathered to honor some of our local veterans.

A couple thousand students packed the gymnasium at Downers Grove North High School for the 14th annual Veterans Day assembly. The high school devotes one hour every year to honor veterans.

READ MORE: Former Chicago Park District Supervisor Mauricio Ramirez Charged With Sexually Assaulting 16-Year-Old Lifeguard

The 9 a.m. assembly recognized more than a 100 veterans, who served in World War II, Korea, the Cold War, Vietnam, Kosovo, Iraq, and Afghanistan. They said they hope to spread patriotism to the next generation.

“It’s extremely emotional for me, because I see youth out there as our future,” said U.S. Navy veteran Lou Kueltzo, a former petty officer who served in the Korean War.

READ MORE: Joel Quenneville Meets With NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman Over Handling Of Blackhawks Sexual Assault Scandal

Sgt. First Class Brandon Miller served in the U.S. Army for 20 years, and retired last month.

“It’s pretty crazy. I mean, I’ve never been to anything to this volume of people, and everybody telling you thank you. It’s kind of humbling to see,” he said.

Miller’s son, Austin Novak, is joining the Marines after he graduates next year.

MORE NEWS: 'Survivor' Contestant Michelle Yi Describes Frightening Santa Monica Assault

“It’s really cool to see all the service members, and sit next to him (dad),” Novak said.