On Wednesday afternoon, funeral home director Marty Mitchell made a Facebook plea for Iowans to honor the life of Korean War Navy veteran, Charles Lanam.
“I‘m sitting in my office right now and contemplating the rest of the week- and really struggling with one thing that I would like to open up and share with all of you- and no, not a joke, something real,” Mitchell wrote in the Facebook post, which, at the time of this article, had been shared nearly 1,700 times.
“On Monday, we are going to bury a man who served our country honorably, and probably before many of us were born. He has no family – absolutely no family, so our staff and the chaplain from IVH will gather on a quiet hillside at IVH and put this man to rest.”
Lanam, who was homeless for years, passed away on April 11 at the Iowa Veterans Home at age 81.
Distraught about the situation, Mitchell reached out through social media to make a request of his fellow Iowans.
KCCI News Des Moines reported that the post received the attention of 60 Patriot Riders, as well as veterans from groups like Veterans of Foreign Wars and the American Legion, that will now gather to give Lanam full military honors on Monday, April 18.
“Even in life he was a quiet man, but in death he made an impact showing what we can do for our vets,” said Mitchell.
Watch the KCCI News coverage here.