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Veteran given military honors 46 years after his death

Posted at 2:32 PM, Sep 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-22 14:33:45-04

GALLATIN, Tenn. — A veteran laid to rest almost 50 years ago after his death finally get’s his military honors.

Mark Atterson comes from a legacy of military family.

He, his brother and father all served.

His father, private Lloyd Atterson received the honors he should’ve been given 46 years ago on Saturday.

"My dad was a hard man. He didn’t show too much affection. I don’t ever remember him telling me he loved me, except the day that he died," said Mark Atterson.

Private Atterson died in 1973, but wasn’t given his military honors back then which always haunted his son mark.

“It got to the point where it bothered me. I found out that that same year that he died apparently there was a fire in the military repository in St. Louis and his records were part of the ones that were destroyed," said Mark Atterson.

It led him to do his own research.

“I remembered that he had gone to the VA hospital in Indianapolis for some treatment and U notified them and they had a copy of his military discharge.”

After he got the proof he needed he reached out to Crestview Memory Gardens where his father his buried.

It was a no brainier for them to make the day as memorable and special for this veteran.

“Veterans are the most important members of our community. They have paid the ultimate sacrifice in many ways, not just those who have lost their life but those who have volunteered to put themselves in harms way. We want to make sure we always honor them and commemorate that service," said Randy Nash General Manager of Crestview Memory Garden.

It's a day that mark Atterson and his wife Rita will always hold dear.

“They went above and beyond my expectations, as far as giving him these military honors and recognition. And not to mention the folded flag, and taps and it’s just really overwhelming.Very moving, very touching to know that after all this time, 40 some years later my dad was given his honor.”

Mr. Atterson’s brother Larry who passed away in April was also honored during the ceremony.