AUSTIN, Texas — Myia Salabarria belted out the favored hymn, “Outdated Rugged Cross,” on stage at Shoreline Church initially of Richard Overton’s memorial service on Saturday morning.
A fittingly spirited starting to a day of honoring a person who touched so many lives.
Mr. Overton, in his casket, was the focus one final time. A large American flag, in lights, proven behind him.
After the music, a video of Mr. Overton informed his story — in his personal phrases.
“I drink about 4 cups of espresso within the morning. This morning, I drank about that a lot whiskey,” Mr. Overton stated within the video, which had the entire church in laughter.
Mr. Overton continues to be making folks snort regardless that he passed on December 27.
The 112-year-old was identified to usually share his secret to an extended life: whiskey and cigars.
However there was one other ingredient as effectively.
“And ice cream. I eat ice cream each night time. It makes me completely satisfied. I eat butter pecan. Should you wanna purchase any, you purchase butter pecan. I’m, I am supplying you with a few of my secrets and techniques to an extended life,” Mr. Overton stated within the video.
That took the Texas Governor without warning.
“Now, I didn’t know till right now that it was butter pecan ice cream,” Governor Greg Abbott stated.
Gov. Abbott additionally remembered another funny moment: when Mr. Overton challenged him to a specific sort of race through the veteran’s 109th birthday.
“He challenged me to a wheelchair race. And I acquired to pondering, ‘Man, how embarrassing wouldn’t it be for me to lose a wheelchair race to a person 109 years outdated?!” Gov. Abbott stated.
Overton’s cousin additionally spoke. Volma Overton thanked all of the elected officers for welcoming his cousin for therefore a few years.
Austin Mayor Steve Adler reminded everybody why Mr. Overton is vital to U.S. historical past.
“The grandson of slaves, his household labored the cotton fields in Bastrop County. Joined the struggle effort in 1940, 42,” Mayor Adler stated.
However it was Military Common John Murray who gave perception into why Mr. Overton was a hero.
Common Murray talked about how courageous Tech Sgt. Overton was when he fought in World Conflict II.
Preventing a struggle not simply abroad, however at house as effectively.
“Segregated models of that point, such because the 1887th, not solely confronted the risks and difficulties inherent of fight, however additionally they needed to face a poisonous mixture of racial discrimination and low expectation from the models they have been a part of,” Common Murray stated.
Common Murray additionally stunned the group with Mr. Overton’s talent.
He wasn’t only a truck driver. Tech Sgt. Overton was additionally an skilled rifleman.
A talent wanted throughout among the most vicious preventing of World Conflict II.
“Within the Battle of Angaur, as a part of the assault on Palau, Military forces confronted Japanese defenders deeply entrenched in tunnels and caves carved in limestone rock,” Common Murray stated.
And so, the Common Murray saluted Mr. Overton one final time, becoming a member of his Austin household in a remaining farewell.
Godspeed, Mr. Overton.