By Leah Sander
WARSAW — Zimmer Biomet honored fallen service members on Thursday, May 27, ahead of the Memorial Day weekend.
The company’s Veterans Resource Group had a Memorial Day wreath-laying ceremony outside the company’s corporate headquarters in downtown Warsaw. This is the third year the company’s had such an event.
The wreath ceremony was in honor of late Kentucky Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Brock Beery and other service members who sacrificed their lives.
Beery, who was originally from Warsaw and also served in the Indiana Army National Guard, was killed on March 23, 2006, near Habbaniyah, Iraq, while serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom.
He received the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Kentucky Distinguished Service Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal and the Combat Infantry Badge.
Beery’s parents, Pamela Beery and Roger Beery, and brother Joel Beery, attended the unveiling of the wreath.
“The pain doesn’t ever go away, but it gets easier,” Pamela Beery told InkFreeNews afterward.
The Zimmer Biomet Foundation presented a $2,000 check in Staff Sgt. Brock Beery’s name to Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Indiana Gold Star President Jill Fewell.
The organization works on “keeping Gold Star families in the minds of … Hoosiers,” Fewell told InkFreeNews. Gold Star families are survivors of a service member killed related to combat.
Zimmer Biomet Office Coordinator and Veterans Resource Group Community Lead and Air Force veteran Cat Bowers spoke during the event.
She shared the story of Army Sgt.1st Class Alwyn Cashe, who will be the first black service Medal of Honor recipient. He died in 2005 after being severely burned while rescuing fellow service members from a burning vehicle that struck a bomb.
“He also insisted on being the last person to be medically evacuated,” Bowers said of Cashe.
She also spoke of Army Capt. Florent Groberg.
Groberg received the Medal of Honor for putting himself between fellow service members and a suicide bomber in Afghanistan in 2012.
Groberg suffered severe injuries when the bomb exploded.
“He said, ‘In combat, there might be a moment when you have to make a decision that will more than likely determine whether or not you live or die. If you’re willing to put yourself in front of that bullet and in front of a suicide bomber, in front of a mortar, in front of anything that’s going to kill you, you’re doing that for the love of your soldiers,'” she said.
“The harsh reality of war and military service in general is that not everyone will make it home. Let us honor the memories of the heroes that are no longer with us today and let us strive to live up to the example that they set as such selfless patriots and be that every day,” she said.
To view the full video of the ceremony, click here.