AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Eight fallen veterans who served for our freedom, yet never received a proper burial, were remembered at the Texas Panhandle War Memorial.
Some of these veterans were left unclaimed for years but after research and support from the community, they're now receiving the honor they deserve.
These veterans died without a home or family to claim them and remained in the custody of the county for many years.
"They fought for us and then came back to their life here and there was nothing here for them. So they literally died of old age," said Potter County Judge Nancy Tanner. "They didn't have anything. They had no money and no one there to do for a funeral for them, so we're going to do that. I'm honored to do this. I love these guys and I loved everything they stand for. It's just so sad to me that they died alone."
The community says this is a way to say thank you.
One veteran who passed away over a decade ago fought for our freedom in three wars.
"He had served in the Army in World War II, but not only that he served in the Navy in Korea and served in the Air Force in Vietnam," said Joel Carver, Panhandle Representative for Missing in America. "He was a three-war veteran, he was wounded in World War II and received the Purple Heart."
Carver, who works with Missing in America, an organization that aims to locate and identify cremated remains of veterans nationwide, says a proper burial is an honor long overdue.
"It's very humbling and gratifying to find a little bit more of the story of these folks that are homeless; forgotten but now found," said Carver. "It's generational, I think that we as those that are living should be grateful for those that serve us on a daily basis."
On Thursday morning, the veterans will be escorted by as many as 1500 Patriot Guard members to San Antonio where they'll be interred at Fort Sam Houston National Ceremony.