A U.S. flag waves above the memorial of David Weir, who died in Baghdad, Iraq, Sept. 14, 2006.
Recently, officials at Fort Campbell notified David’s widow, Alison, that a more permanent memorial was being constructed and dedicated to fallen soldiers.
They asked if she wanted the small stone which had lined the sidewalk ... one of many which were eventually given to the families of fallen soldiers.
Alison said she told officials at the fort David’s parents, Lynn and Jackie Weir, would want the stone.
It was delivered to the Weir residence earlier this year and the family built the memorial to their son and husband.
David and his crew encountered enemy forces who used a rocket-propelled grenade and small arms fire during combat.
He was a member of the 1st Squadron, 61st Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division.
He was an interpreter for the group and also had the duty of raising and lowering flags which would be used at other fallen soldiers’ funerals. It was a daunting task, according to an email reply from David to his friend Marc Whitmier, who was not a member of the military and was stateside asking David Weir what he was doing to celebrate Memorial Day.
According to the email, David Weir replied he had been changing the flags and reflecting about the true meaning of Memorial Day.
“To him, it was not about a celebration, but a reflection on the lives lost during war to protect many freedoms Americans have,” said Lynn and Jackie Weir.
“There were many things we learned about David after his death,” Jackie Weir said. “He wouldn’t share much with us. But we continue to learn about our son. He was a good soldier.”
When David Weir died in war and the news spread back to Cleveland, sadness set in for the family as they prepared to receive his body and plan a funeral for their son who had made the ultimate sacrifice.
Alison and David’s son Gavin, who was only 18 months old, now learns of his father only through conversation from his family.
He also has video of the celebration of his father’s life and how the community showed their love and respect for what he had given up.
From earlier reports, David’s brother Chris Weir spoke at the funeral.
“Some sit down or even run away from that calling. Some stand up and run toward it,” he said. “But I’m here to tell each of you we have a reason to smile, sing and even scream out with pride that Sgt. David Thomas Weir fulfilled his purpose and answered his calling.”
He said one of his brother’s favorite sayings was ‘Every man dies, but not everyone lives.’
“I stand here tonight assured my brother lived. Not only did he live, but he loved and he was loved,” Chris Weir said.
On the way to the Chattanooga National Cemetery, thousands of area residents displayed flags and observed the patriot riders and law enforcement as they traveled the streets of the city.
It was described as a river of red, white and blue.
Many things have changed since 2006.
Gavin now attends Oak Grove Elementary School — where his father attended, as well as Jackie Weir.
Gavin also presents a special award each year to students who “go above and beyond” the normal. The Sgt. David T. Weir Award also is given to an outstanding Bradley Central Football player who excels and displays the qualities which described David, according to Lynn Weir.
More and more stones were added at Fort Campbell. More and more stories came out about David Weir. The stone was delivered to the Weirs and they continue to learn.
David Weir was awarded the Bronze Star posthumously.
He had asked “why?”
“There were so many others deserving and didn’t know why he had deserved one,” according to Jackie Weir.
As the family learns, it becomes more evident why.
“He was a good soldier.”