ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — A homeless veteran with no record of family history will get a burial with full honors thanks to the St. Augustine Police Department.
“He served in the United States Army from 1966-1968,” said Officer Steven Fischer.
But no one had any idea. For years, John Meade Jr., who was homeless, would hang around downtown St. Augustine.
“He was just a friendly person, a nice person,” said Officer Fischer.
And just about everyone knew him.
“We always enjoyed seeing and waving at him and he would wave back. He was a part of our town,” said David Carni, who knew John.
But John died a few months ago. And no one knew where he was from or anything about him.
“People say they’re off the grid, this man was off the grid, there was very little information I could find about him,” said Officer Fischer.
Officer Fischer with the St. Augustine Police Department searched at work, at home, looking for any kind of information about John.
“At least 80 hours plus trying to find anything from him,” he said.
There was nothing. But Fischer kept looking until he found out that John was a veteran and was honorably discharged.
“It was kind of my mission to make sure that he got what he deserved,” he said.
Fischer said John was there for us. We can be there for him. There will be a full honors burial at the Jacksonville National Cemetery for John.
“The more people that can honor John, the better,” Fischer said.
While many people didn’t know much about John, they hope he will never be forgotten.
“We are very proud of him,” Carni said.
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