“On days like this you remember those that are no longer here.”
Those were the poignant words of one veteran who paid his respects on Remembrance Sunday in Huddersfield.
Iain Colley, 49, who served for six years in the Yorkshire Regiment, donned his grandfather’s service medals and joined hundreds of well wishers who turned out for the parade through the streets of the town centre.
Across Kirklees, ceremonies took place at war memorials in most towns and villages with dignitaries laying wreaths to remember victims of war.
In Huddersfield a parade of soldiers, veterans and cadets were marched from outside the Town Hall to a remembrance service at the parish church.
Mr Colley and some of the 45 member strong Huddersfield (3) Yorkshire Association gathered outside the church to mark the day.
Cpl Jake Hartley, 20, of New Mill; Private Anton Frampton, 20, of Longwood and Private Daniel Wilford, 21, of Cowlersley were among six killed by a roadside bomb in Helmand in March 2012.
“It means a hell of a lot to me,” said Mr Colley of Cowlersley, whose son knew Pte Wilford.
“On days like this you remember those that are no longer here.
“I did six years with (3) Yorkshire and the camaraderie in the military is amazing, it’s like having a second family.”
The Mayor of Kirklees Clr Paul Kane urged people to support the poppy appeal.
He said: “Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday are not just about the names carved onto the war memorials, they are also about the great dignity showed by the veterans and serving members who proudly parade.”
He added: “Present conflicts involving our local soldiers continue, and Kirklees has experienced more than most the sad losses of recent conflicts.
“So while conflicts can seem like a world away as they are reported on the news, or we celebrate another anniversary, the impact is being felt at home, and that impact does not stop when other people move on.
“Those families rely on support they get from the appeal fund.”