Gone, but not forgotten: a Korean War veteran's funeral in Beatrice
Gone, but not forgotten. This is the story of Korean war veteran Richard Hart Giddings.
A special moment today in Beatrice for a Korean war veteran. He died recently, but he had no family on record. That's when the community stepped up. He is remembered today by service of the proper military burial.
"We weren't going to let him be alone at the time of his burial. That's not something you do. If you're able to come down and be here, then come down and be here," US Army veteran, Nick Werman said.
Not much was known of Giddings, other than that of his Korean war service, and that he was a friendly member of the Beatrice community.
"He went by 'Dapper Dan' and dressed very well, very prominent, very big in his community. I did talk to a couple community board members where he supported everything he could support," funeral member, Shawna Hinchman said.
"Seeing people come together of all ages in support of a fellow brother, it makes you feel good. It lets you know the bonds are still there, that people still care," Werman said.
"We have no idea when we go into this how many will be here. It could be nobody, in this case it was 100 people who showed up," the contributor to the funeral proceedings and Roper and Sons Funeral Service, Mark Roper said.
The impact of the gathering was a result of news that had spread simply by social media and word of mouth just weeks before.
"The Gage county Veterans Service Office, and (points) sent out a message, sent out a message, sent out a text and [we] filled a vehicle and came down," Werman said.
"It was very hard to hold back the tears today. I'm not going to lie there. It was quite an outpouring, and very grateful, very thankful to everyone who got to see the post and come out today and take their Monday morning off and be out here to support this," Hinchman said.
Yet again, telling all of us that we are not alone.
"It brings a tear to my eye to see this. I feel like the organizations that support veterans becomes his family," Roper said.