CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. (CBS46) -- For those who serve our country a military burial is customary, but for seven World War II veterans that day took years to come to fruition.
From taps to the police escort, even a three gun salute, seven unclaimed veterans were laid to rest with the full honor they deserve on November 12th.
“Each American service member and veteran is a member of a larger family. Ladies and gentlemen that is why you’re here today”, said CH Jerrrey Herron with the Georgia Army National Guard.
Hundreds gathered to say goodbye and pay their last respects.
“It’s never too late to remember. In our hearts they are the patriots who kicked off this revolution. In our hearts they're the GI’s dead in the water in crucial times in Europe and Pacific. In our hearts we share the victory of World War II. So we pause today to remember these brave souls,” said George State Sen Tonya Anderson.
The men did not die during the war and the circumstances around each death differ. Still most of them were cremated around 30 years ago and their remains sat on a shelf waiting to be claimed by a family member.
But the hundreds who came out to pay their respects to Capt. Frank Teasley, TSGL John Campbell Jr. SPX1 James Sheridan, SGT Robert Forrest Sr. SGT William Wallengren, TEC 5 John Embert, PFC Robert Green say they were happy to step in for their families.
”This is our chance to say thank you for their service back then,” said Canton resident Rob Allen.
”I am out here just to show veterans that people like me support them and are grateful for all that they’ve done and their service to our country,” said John Geiger with the Patriot Riders.
The service was hosted by Missing in America Veteran Recovery Program and Dignity Funeral Services.