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Astros recognize veterans on Memorial Day

HOUSTON -- As part of the Memorial Day festivities at Minute Maid Park on Monday afternoon, the Astros recognized veterans on the field from every conflict since World War II, including 90-year-old veteran Pat Duncan.

Duncan, who threw out the ceremonial first pitch, was a survivor of the Dec. 7, 1941, attack on Pearl Harbor while serving in the Navy and received eight commendations and medals in his career. The Astros and Rockies both wore commemorative camouflage hats and jerseys for the game.

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"I think it's tremendous," manager Bo Porter said. "When you think about our country and all the things which we've been though, to be able to have a day where the entire league honors the veterans and what it is our country stands for, it's great for baseball and great for our country."

Memorial Day is certainly special to Astros outfielder Robbie Grossman, whose father, Rob, spent 11 years in the Navy and was an aviator in the first Gulf War. He was a Seahawk pilot who flew helicopters off the back of frigates, cruisers and destroyers.

"It's a tribute to the people who served this country and fought for our freedoms and everything we have and take for granted," Grossman said. "It means a lot to me."

Brian McTaggart is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Tag's Lines. Follow @brianmctaggart on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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