No One Was Expected At This Veteran’s Funeral, But Thousands Showed UpMatthew Russell
When Air Force veteran Joseph Walker died, no one was expected to visit his funeral.
Walker had few family or friends near his home in Central Texas, but the veterans cemetery couldn’t stand the thought of another veteran being buried alone. So, they put out a call.
And it was answered.
A number of highly-visible tweeters worked to pass along Walker’s story. Before long, the invitation went viral.
“Air Force Veteran Joseph Walker will be laid to rest Monday, and no one is expected to attend,” Sen. Ted Cruz wrote on Twitter. “The cemetery said they do not know where his family is and they do not want him to be laid to rest alone, so they are asking the public to attend.”
Later the same day, CNN host Jake Tapper published the funeral home’s address, along with the date and time of the memorial, hoping the population of Central Texas might show their respects at the service.
And that, they did.
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
A line of cars heading for the Kileen, TX, cemetery soon stretched out for miles. Some drove for hours to support and celebrate Walker’s life.
People from almost every walk of life gathered to send of the veteran. Judges, politicians, motorcycle gangs, and many, many veterans.
A huge crowd turns out for Air Force veteran Joseph Walker who had no family of his own to honor his life and service to his country. #veteran #airforce #kvue #unacompaniedveteranburial pic.twitter.com/0T1S0WPGqO— Scott Guest (@ScottGuest67) January 28, 2019
Large number of people arriving at the central Texas veterans cemetery in Killeen for the burial service of Air Force veteran Joseph Walker-with no immediate family, his story went viral on social media last week @fox7austin pic.twitter.com/ZPdbxnosJu— rudy koski (@KoskionFOX7) 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