KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Time has passed and many years have gone by, but Rolan Waters continues to wear his uniform. The retired Army veteran spent three years in the military starting at age 18, but now spends his time as a volunteer for the Volunteer State Veteran’s Honor Guard.
“It is one of the highest honors I’ve ever had,” said Waters.
Waters has been a member of the Honor Guard for 17 years. During that time he has helped perform more than 3,000 funerals for veterans in East Tennessee.
“I love this country and every one of those veterans is my brothers and sisters, and if I can be there for them and their family there’s nothing I wouldn’t do to do that,” said Waters.
Waters has been helping with Honor Guard for so long, the goodbyes have become personal at times as he helped bury some of his closest friends. He showed us a flag that was given to him by the daughter of a fellow veteran after he passed away.
Waters said he continues to volunteer to not only honor the families of those veterans as they pass, but to also remember the men and women for their service and sacrifice.
“Some have given all and all have given some. They defended America. They defended us,” said Waters.
More online: Operation Honor Guard Day of Giving