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Fallen Marine remembered with honorary signage in Douglasville
by Liz Marino
November 14, 2012 01:09 PM | 2078 views | 0 0 comments | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Brian Harper, left, father of Lance Cpl. Scott Harper, and Deborah Busbin Staples, Scott’s mother, stand beside the sign dedicated Friday in honor of the fallen Marine. The sign will honorarily rename a portion of Douglas Boulevard on his behalf.
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At the heels of Veterans Day — and just a little over a year since the death of Lance Cpl. Scott “Boots” Harper — family, friends and community joined together last week to make sure the Douglas County son would always be remembered.

An honorary dedication was held to unveil a sign along a portion of Douglas Boulevard in memory of the fallen Marine.

Harper was a graduate of Alexander High School.

Representatives of both the city of Douglasville and Douglas County and members of the Patriot Guard Riders motorcycle group were on hand to pay tribute to Harper, who lost his life on Oct. 13, 2011, while serving in Afganistan.

The Patriot Guard is a nonprofit group that escorts fallen soldiers’ funeral processions.

In his address, Douglasville Mayor Harvey Persons told the gathered, “We are honoring him for giving his life for his country.

“A lot of times you hear the word ‘freedom.’ Freedom is a misnomer — there is nothing free about it. It is to give up a life for something you believe in. Freedom is not free.”

Douglas County Commission Chairman Tom Worthan quoted remarks from American Revolutionary patriot Thomas Paine, written in 1776.

“’These are the times that try men’s souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it now deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.’”

Worthan commented, “They still apply today. Scott Harper stood tall in the service of his country.

“On days like today, we remember the service; we appreciate the sacrifice; and we honor the man.”

Douglas County District Attorney David McDade was instrumental in bringing this honor about through an accidental meeting in a restaurant with Scott’s father, Brian Harper.

McDade said, “I commend you sharing your son with Douglas County. I am honored you allowed me to help.

“As of today, everyone in the world that drives down this road will know what he means to us.”

In an emotional moment, Brian Harper said he was moved by the number of people present who didn’t know his son personally.

“A lot of people here today were fellow Marines or friends of Scott, and some who never met him. I want to thank those people who helped.

“I am very proud of my son.”

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