Our network

Volunteers plant flags for Arkansas fallen heroes | News

Title (Max 100 Characters)

Volunteers plant flags for Arkansas fallen heroes

MAUMELLE, Ark.(KTHV)- For many, Friday is the kick-off to a three day weekend, but local volunteers are making sure that no one forgets the true meaning of Memorial Day.

A time to honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice fighting for our freedom.

Flag after flag, post after post, a face with a name.

Chief Master Sgt. Bubba Beason says it's a memorial for the 143 fallen heroes in Arkansas since 9/11.

"The weekend is not about hamburgers and hot dogs it's about remembering those affected to allow us to do what we do."

The Arkansas Fallen Heroes Memorial
was all started with Rob Hopper, who lost his son, Marine Lance Corporal Brian Chase Hopper in 2005.

Hopper is no longer physically able to set up the memorial, but Beason says the legacy lives on.

"It's in may heart, I feel it's my duty to recognize my fallen brothers and sisters."

Maumelle Mayor Mike Watson hopes residents pay their respects.

"We want people to pause. Not just go to the lake and not just have a picnic where they cook hamburgers and hot dogs. We want them to think of the ultimate sacrifice that's been paid for their freedoms."

Volunteer Jeff Marshall says the memorial doesn't just happen once a year, this flag field travels all over the state year round.

"It kind of takes a life of its own. As we participate we become close to the families, we feel like we know every single on of them, all 143."

Marshall says his favorite time to visit the memorial is at night.

"Listen to the wind blow through the flags, it's the most peaceful sound in the world."

Volunteer and veteran Jeff Roland remembers his cousin.

"He was a fighter, he was a hero."

Whether killed overseas, or died here at home.

Marshall says every fallen hero has a story.

"Each flag we place there's an emotional attachment to it, so there's a lot of emotion attached to it."

Maumelle fire and police will host a Memorial Day service at 10 Monday morning. It will be held at the veterans memorial next to the flag field rain or shine.