Thursday, July 26, 2012

Veterans' groups come together to honor soldier they never met - WFAA



Posted on July 26, 2012 at 8:25 PM

Updated today at 8:46 PM

DALLAS - Clifton Mims, 82, served in the Army in the late 1940's after World War II. He died on Independence Day.

Mims was accepted for the honor of being buried at the DFW National Cemetery.

But the story took a turn.

Clifton Mims' body was brought to a Dallas funeral home the day he died, but his family couldn't afford the cremation.

So his body rested at the funeral home for an entire week.

"If you served our country, you're my brother," said veteran Steve Blackburn. "And we're here to do anything we can for you, if you need it."

Dallas County Veterans Services sent out a mass e-mail with a plea for help. The Plano VFW post, the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association and several other vets' groups came up with the money.

"They put their lives on the line every day for this country, and deserve the best burial that they can get," said Jim Steelman with the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association. "And they deserve the honor of the country."

So more than one week after he died, Clifton Mims' ashes were brought to the DFW National Cemetery. Dozens of veterans who never knew Mims came to honor him and give him the proper burial he deserves.

"No veteran should have to go through that," Blackburn said. "Every veteran who served his country deserves a decent burial, to be laid to rest in honor."

"We're all veterans and we would all hope they would do something for us if we needed it," Steelman added.

Mims' daughter told News 8 she's grateful for the help, and hopeful what happened to her grieving family should never happen to anyone else.


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