Tyler honors veterans and fallen service members - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Tyler honors veterans and fallen service members

TYLER, TX (KLTV) - In Tyler, the Memorial Day celebration offered a very clear picture of sadness and celebration: beautiful weather, live music, and waving flags against the backdrop of a cemetery.

The day offered veterans and family members of fallen service members a chance to connect and remember.

World War II Veteran Zeke Ziober says it was a different world when he joined the Navy in the 1940s.

"Back when I was 18 and went in there, there was no question. Everybody was headed in the same direction, trying to get in there and do something," says Ziober.

He says that love of country may not come as natural anymore, but it's events like this one that give him hope.

"This new patriotism is going to have to start from little groups like this, and hopefully spread all over the country. Because the guys that lost their lives are due some thanks," adds Ziober.

There were families at the event that have only recently lost their loved ones. Dechel St. Mary Edwards' daughter, Tyler Jefferson, was shot and killed last year while jogging near her base in Florida. Her mom carried her picture and cried tears of pride, not sorrow.

"Even though she's been taken away, I'm proud of her. And I will be proud every day that she chose an honorable path. She was doing what she wanted to do, country and family, and honor that it was for her," says Edwards.

More than 300 people came out to Tyler Memorial's Cemetery for Monday's celebration.

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