As the solemn sounds of taps and a 21-gun salute echoed through the air, Spc. Ember Alt’s family gathered around a memorial and began sobbing as her face was revealed on a black granite monument.
“Her smile said it all,” said Patrick Turck, president of the Central Texas Fallen Heroes Memorial, as he quoted comments from Alt’s friends and family. “She lit up the room when she walked in. If you needed motivation or someone to talk to about your problems, she was there. She affected the lives of everyone she came into contact with. She was the most loving and forgiving person you will have ever known — an American hero.”
Alt, a 2009 Killeen High School graduate, was killed June 18 by indirect enemy fire at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, during her first tour in the country.
Alt’s name, along with the names of Lt. Jason Togi and Sgt. Lyle Turnbull, was etched into a polished stone and unveiled during a Memorial Day ceremony Monday at Central Texas State Veterans Cemetery in Killeen.