A Kentucky restaurant manager’s tribute to the 13 U.S. servicemen killed in a terrorist attack as they tried to help evacuate Americans and Afghan allies from Taliban-held Kabul on Thursday touched hearts across the country. country.
“To the 13 dead,” wrote Tyler Scott Parker, manager of the St. Matthews Texas Roadhouse in Louisville, Ky., In a Facebook caption with an image showing 13 place settings, each with a full pint of Bud Light.
“I really wanted people to see it and know that as a business we hear them,” he told Fox News on Saturday.
In a separate article, Parker showed the American flag on the roof of the restaurant halfway up, accompanied by a chilling caption.
THE AMERICAN SERVICE MEMBERS KILLED IN THE KABUL AIRPORT ATTACK
“[Thirteen] the bells will ring, ”he says. “13 flags will be distributed. 13 will never come home. “
An ISIS-related bombing at Kabul airport on Thursday killed 11 US Marines, a soldier and a Navy medic, defense officials said, as well as dozens of Afghan civilians. It left more people injured.
Parker, who said both of his grandfathers served in the Korean War and his stepfather was a Marine during the Desert Storm, wanted to honor the men and women killed.
“It touches me a bit,” he said. “When your family served and came back, then you think these 13 people have fallen and are not going to come back.”
As he was thinking about how to pay him tribute, he said that Luke Bryan’s song, “Drink A Beer,” popped into his head.
“So I was just like, let’s go ahead, and let’s put some beers on the table,” he said.
The image elicited a strong reaction. As of Saturday afternoon, it had been shared over 27,000 times, with thousands of likes.
The Kabul attack marked a tragic turning point for the chaotic withdrawal of the Biden administration from Afghanistan and sparked a US drone strike that killed ISIS-K targets who allegedly planned additional attacks against the Americans.
It has also been a tumultuous year for Texas Roadhouse.
Founder and CEO Kent Taylor announced at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic that he would forgo his own salary in order to continue paying his workers as pandemic shutdowns disrupt the restaurant industry.
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Then, in March 2021, he committed suicide after battling post-coronavirus symptoms, including severe tinnitus, the company and his family members said in a statement.
Taylor was born in Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, where his father was an Army lieutenant, in 1955, according to a New York Times obituary.
And had always supported the military, Parker said.
“We’re having a big Memorial Day, we’re making the fallen heroes table… just a little way to give back and show that we care about them and are there for them,” he said.
Before his death, he pledged to fund a study to help veterans cope with tinnitus.