Congressman Poe Honors Fallen Warriors

Four years ago, during a Fourth of July Bar-B-Q in Kingwood, I met a young Marine - Sergeant Brandon Bury. He stood 6 foot 6, and he was all Marine. At the time, I was so impressed by this young man’s tenacity, courage and fierce patriotism. I am even more impressed with him now. Two years after we met, at the age of 26, Brandon was killed during combat operations in Afghanistan. He was on his third tour of duty. He left behind a loving family and a community who adored him. I will never forget the day of his funeral when the whole town gathered on Kingwood Drive to pay respect to our fallen hero. American flags were draped over the empty streets, as Brandon’s casket came through. I remember speaking to a Marine from California who participated in the processional. He came up to me with tears in his eyes and told me that he had never seen a community filled with patriotism like he did that day. They say the worst casualty of war is to be forgotten. Here in Texas, we never forget.

Last Saturday, I was honored to speak at the dedication of a new memorial in our neighborhood: the Fallen Warrior Memorial at Cy-Champ Park in Houston. Hundreds of patriots and families (including the family of Sergeant Bury) gathered to honor and remember their loved ones who gave their lives for America. The Fallen Warrior Memorial is dedicated to those from Texas who gave their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Memorial sits at the end of the park’s nature path, and four large granite walls list the names of the 611 fallen warriors from Texas. We must always remember our fallen heroes, their sacrifice and their contributions to our community, state and nation, and even internationally. I encourage you to take the time to visit and pay your respects at the Memorial. For more information, please visit the Memorial’s website at http://www.kiamonument.org/.

Our troops are stationed around the world: from Afghanistan to South Korea, and from Kosovo to most recently, Jordan. Since I first came to Congress, the 2nd Congressional District has lost 36 warriors. Their picture and names are placed on the wall of each of my offices: Kingwood, Beaumont and Washington. Seeing their faces each day is a constant reminder of the sacrifices they and their families made for our nation. May we never forget those who fought for us abroad, but never made it back home. And that’s just the way it is.

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