BYRON, Ill. (WTVO) — Across the Nation people are paying tribute to service members killed in Afghanistan by buying 13 beers at local bars and restaurants.
13 American families won’t have the homecoming they imagined, thirteen beers filled to the top as a tribute to the troops at Uptown Lanes/Back Alley Bar and Grill in Byron.
The bar’s manager, Blake Horras, said a local marine came to the bar on Saturday with his kids, purchased the beers and asked to set up a table.
“I know that this is extremely personal to him as I’m sure it is to so many in the area,” Horras said. “He came in and he wanted to make sure people remembered that and to have that here I think it’s a good thing to remind people what really can happen in life.”
A folded flag sits next to the glasses.
“There’s 13 beers here for 13 individuals. To be able to have this, to be able to show our support to the men and women all over that we recognize the sacrifices that they take for us, it’s a lot of emotions,” he explained.
“There’s 13 families that are losing loved ones trying to protect a freedom that Americans take for granted,” said Uptown Lanes customer, Mike Egan. “For somebody to do this and honor our fallen men and women…to me it was just awe-inspiring.”
Egan said the display is extremely moving every time he glances over.
“I would hope that everybody that sees this that would understand what’s at stake for our country. We have service men and women throughout the world not just in Afghanistan throughout the world that put their lives on the line everyday so I can sit in a bar,” he said. “The men and women of our military provide that for us.”
Horras tells us he plans to leave the beers sitting on the table for awhile.