PARIS, TX-- As you kick back to relax, fire up the grill or head out to the lake this holiday weekend, a Paris Vietnam veteran asks that you pause for a minute, and remember true meaning of Memorial Day.
This time of year when driving down 20th street Northeast in Paris you'll see homes with newly planted flowers and trees in the front yard, but in Morgan Dudley's yard you'll find 20 crosses and military gear, remembering those who were killed in the Vietnam war from Lamar County.
Dudley is a Vietnam veteran himself, and has made the memorial every year for the past 17 years.
"It's to remember the ones that have fallen in Vietnam, most of these are from Vietnam that got killed," said Vietnam Veteran Morgan Dudley. "I just do it for remembrance."
Dudley says this time of year is especially difficult for him, but he wants veterans who have passed to know they have not been forgotten.
"I honor the dead by helping the living veterans, and I try to reach out to a veteran everyday somewhere," said Dudley.
He says Memorial Day is a time to remember the men and women who fought for our freedom.
"A lot of people take it for barbecuing and partying and different things, they take it for granted freedom is not free."
Dudley also sets up a memorial on Veterans Day.