NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Confetti rained down on our hometown heroes Wednesday as the city celebrated essential workers with a ticker tape parade.
Some parts of the celebration had to be canceled due to the extreme heat, but that didn’t stop the crowds from coming out to say thank you.READ MORE: New York City Marriage Bureau Resumes In-Person Weddings By Appointment Only
It started in Lower Manhattan near Battery Park, then traveled north up the Canyon of Heroes for about a mile, then ended near City Hall.
As CBS2’s Alice Gainer reports, it was a day we’ll never forget.
Up the Canyon of Heroes our essential workers came for their day in the sun, and it was a hot one. Leading off in the city’s official parade car was Grand Marshal Sandra Lindsay. The Chrysler Imperial Phaeton has given rides to world leaders and celebrities for decades, and now the Queens nurse who became the first person in the U.S. to receive a COVID vaccine joins the list of famous passengers.
WEB EXTRA: Watch The Parade
“I always was hopeful and here we are today,” Lindsay said.
That wasn’t the only old vehicle on the move. The Transit Museum lent out an old subway car, more than a century old to honor the transit workers who kept the city moving.
“They literally carried the city on their back for 18 months,” said Sarah Feinberg, interim president of MTA NYC Transit.
“It’s awesome to be celebrated like this,” one person on a float said.
Ten bands and 14 specialty vehicles traveled the route, which began at Battery Park and traveled north along Broadway to City Hall.
Delivery workers like Sarah with UPS were honored.
“December 14th, and we just received the first vaccine delivery, and it was going to NYU and I got to be there,” Sarah said.READ MORE: Mayor De Blasio Sounds Off On Those Not Taking Delta Variant Seriously: 'I Mean, This Is Crazy. Get Vaccinated'
“The packages needed to go out. People still needed their medication, still needed their food,” another person said.
Hospital and health care workers, some in their lab coats. The Department of Social Services.
“So amazing for us to come out here and actually come together after such a hard year,” one person said.
Complete Coverage: Hometown Heroes Parade
Education, first responders, community care, advocacy organizations, hospitality and building care, food and bodega workers, and utilities all got the thank you they deserved.
“Everybody who made the hospitals work in this crisis. You are our heroes. Thank you,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
“We just wanted to thank them,” one parade goer said.
The event was celebratory and yet, everything before this moment isn’t forgotten.
“‘We lost lives. We got sick, and we still moved New York, seven days a week,” one man said.
“People have lost family members, friends,” another person said.
“They just risked their lives,” another person said.
And once the parade ended, the cleanup – a massive one – began.MORE NEWS: Healing-Centered Schools Task Force Sends Recommendations Addressing Punishment, Trauma At New York City Schools
We may never be able to truly thank them, but a parade feels like a great place to start.