Many honor U.S. Army Veteran during 100th unaccompanied burial

Local

Many braved the heavy mist Tuesday morning to honor the 100th unaccompanied veteran laid to rest in the state of Texas.

U.S. Army Veteran Major Lee Shotwell Junior has no next of kin and that’s what prompted many from near and far to show their support at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery.

“This shows what kind of community, what kind of state we have when we have to many people take time out of their busy day and schedule to show up for someone they haven’t even met and give honors,” said Marc George with Christian Motorcyclist Association.

Maj. Shotwell Jr. served in the Army from December 1963 to December 1966.

“He knows that he’s got a family, you know and all veterans got a family and I’m sure that if he’s looking down, he’s proud of his family, of his veterans,” said Antonio Martinez with Americal Division Vietnam.

On Tuesday, dozens came out to offer their support.

“The future of our state, the future of our country has to understand the true cost and sacrifice that’s required in honor to make our country free and great,” said George P. Bush, Texas Land Commissioner.

From the youngest, to the oldest.

WWII Veteran Pvt. Louis Hicks, at 92 years old, paid his respects.

“It was a great honor, I’m hoping one day it might be my day and hope it be many days for many fallen soldiers. It’s wonderful that this organization has created something like this. God Bless America,” said Pvt. Hicks.

Demonstrating no Texas Veteran will ever be left behind.

“Nobody here is paid by the state of Texas, this is completely voluntary and I think Major Shotwell would be excited by this burial,” said P. Bush.

“We’re stuck with each other, because this is what Texans do,” added George.

Wednesday, another unaccompanied U.S. Army Veteran will be laid to rest.

John Lynn Loyd has no known next of kin and everyone is encouraged to honor him at 2 p.m. at the Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery in Killeen.

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