Vietnam Veteran Honored With Magis Award During Independence Day Ceremonies

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — When in the course of human events it becomes necessary to party — Philly does it with tradition and enthusiasm. Old City was the site of the annual Independence Day ceremonies on Tuesday.

In front of a flag-waving crowd at Independence Hall, Mayor Jim Kenney gave the city’s Magis Award to Ralph Galati, director of veterans services at St. Joseph’s University. Galati was a POW with Senator John McCain and Admiral James Stockdale.

“Seeing how they stood tall, how they maintained their dignity, they were determined to return home with honor,” Galati said. “The least we could do was fall into their footsteps.”

McCain appeared on video.

“I first met Ralph at the infamous ‘Hanoi Hilton’ where we were being held captive during the Vietnam War.”

After the ceremony, it was the parade, with Tastykake and marching bands and Miss America delighting thousands along Chestnut and Market Streets.

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