PARIS, TX - Over the years the city of Paris has been marred with division and controversy. But today, as Rick Springer reports, hundreds of people from the small North Texas community stood together for a special dedication ceremony to one of their fall sons, united by the memory of those who have died protecting our freedom.
"Sometimes we forget about all the veterans that have done so much for this country," said Texas State Senator Kevin Eltife.
But the community of Paris, Texas wanted to make sure that would never be the case.
In 2009 Sargent Jay Michael Hoskins, along with two other Marines, was killed in Afghanistan by a roadside bomb while supporting combat operations.
Today, on the 236th anniversary of the Marine Corps, his hometown dedicated a section of highway 271 in honor of his memory and ultimate sacrifice.
"He honored his family, his town, and his country," said one family member. "I think it's wonderful. An honor to him. An honor to his family, and a great showing of our town and our city."
State Senator Kevin Eltife spoke at the ceremony. He introduced the bill to rename the highway.
"We'll never be able to fully repay Sgt. Hoskins or his family of the ultimate sacrifice," said Eltife, "but it's a way to let them know that we'll never forget the sacrifice that he made, and the sacrifice of all our veterans."
Hoskins was only 24 years old when he died and had recently become the father of two baby boys.
His wife Chandler says driving by the memorial will be difficult, but it will serve as an everlasting reminder of the sacrifice he made and the overwhelming support of the country that he loved.
"I think it's pretty awesome that this town has come together, and that this state has come together," said Hoskins. "I know he would have been honored."