The Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery was unable to locate any family members to attend services for a Vietnam Air Force veteran named Joseph Walker — so staff members charged with organizing his funeral made a public plea for attendance.
“We do not leave veterans behind,” they said. (RELATED: Dan Crenshaw Puts Trump’s Veterans Day Whiff On Arlington In Perspective)
Local reporters helped to raise awareness — and quickly caught the attention of some nationally-known figures as well. All of them had one simple goal: don’t let this veteran be buried alone.
Texans won’t let this happen… https://t.co/IPcOcszpqJ
— Janet Shamlian (@JanetShamlian) January 27, 2019
No one is expected to attend the funeral for Joseph Walker, who served in the US Air Force 1964-1968.
His funeral will take place Monday at 10 a.m. at the Central Texas State Cemetery.
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) January 27, 2019
No one is expected at the funeral of Air Force Veteran Joseph Walker. Honoring his life is the least we can do. If you’re in the Austin area Monday morning, I hope you can make it.
Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery
11463 State Highway 195
— Mark Kelly (@ShuttleCDRKelly) January 28, 2019
Texas did not disappoint. Pictures poured in on Monday from people who attended Walker’s funeral, showing long lines of cars and crowds waiting to pay their respects to a hero.
Killeen, Texas: A line of cars stretching for miles to attend the funeral of an Air Force Veteran with no family.. after fears he would be buried with no one attending. pic.twitter.com/IC5z7IlDjh
— Janet Shamlian (@JanetShamlian) January 28, 2019
Thank you to the Wind Therapy Freedom Riders that have gathered to ride to #AirForce #Veteran Joseph Walker’s funeral this morning. Mr. Walker was expected to be buried without family or friends present, but the community has stepped up and will be with him as he’s laid to rest. pic.twitter.com/xT3WEqZTrJ
— Judge Carter (@JudgeCarter) January 28, 2019
Incredible turnout at @usairforce veteran Joseph Walker’s funeral this morning in Killeen.
Central Texas is awesome. ???????? pic.twitter.com/qgNeukR8nw
— US Attorney John Bash (@USAttyBash) January 28, 2019
Today I attended the funeral of Air Force Veteran Joseph Walker. With no family or friends his funeral was expected to have no visitors. Instead, thousands of Texans came to pay their respects. #txlege pic.twitter.com/iXjvNTlrfk
— Giovanni Capriglione (@VoteGiovanni) January 28, 2019
“No veteran should be buried alone.”
After the funeral home of #AirForce veteran Joseph Walker feared no one would attend his burial because they could not get in touch with family or friends, the central #Texas and military communities came out in full force to honor him. pic.twitter.com/3RNNYFbfw4
— Paul B. Livengood II (@IamLivengood) January 28, 2019