A Boston high school gave a deceased homeless veteran a military-style send-off after students learned the man died in the streets with no living family members or friends.
After students at Catholic Memorial High School discovered that John T. Fitzmaurice, an Army veteran, would be buried without any of his family and friends present, they worked with a local funeral home and ministry to give him a proper funeral, Fox News reported.
The high school ensured Fitzmaurice had a burial with full military honors and had a full mass in the school chapel in his honor before his burial.
Many students at the school attended or took part in the funeral to pay their respects despite not knowing much about the veteran.
“We have a lot of veterans in my family so I know the sacrifice he made for the country and I know the service he committed in the years he committed to serving our country,” senior class president Will Padden told CBS Boston.
A group of high school seniors brought Fitzmaurice’s flag-draped coffin to the Army hearse and military officers played taps.
“For us paying homage to a veteran, to bring him to our campus, to provide the burial rights he deserves, and to honor his legacy and to help our boys realize we have to stand with those who are marginalized,” said the school’s president, Peter Folan.
Other high schools have stepped up to the plate to give homeless military veterans without loved ones a proper send off. In 2015, students at a Detroit high school began a pallbearer ministry program where students would serve as pallbearers at homeless military veterans’ funerals that continues to this day.