UTC graduate serves on Old Guard for former Pres. George H.W. Bush's funeral
One of the members of the Old Guard for former President George H.W. Bush's funeral, Joey Royster, is from Chattanooga.
His father, Mike, is proud of what his son has accomplished.
Seeing his son honor former Commander in Chief George H.W. Bush was something he never dreamed of.
"No. No. But I am proud of him, and I'm glad he had the opportunity,” Royster said.
They recorded the services and were excited to spot Joey.
"No doubt. It's just, I think it's a tremendous honor for him. You know, for me too. I mean, to have him be able to go through that, I mean it's just amazing,” Royster said.
He says Joey has always had a desire to serve and knew he would.
"Daddy had a saber that is a part of his uniform. When he had the medals and he had some other stuff he had kept with him from the war. So Joey was just fascinated with that,” Royster said.
Joey is now a member of the Old Guard.
He graduated from the ROTC program at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga back in 2014.
Program director Captain Kevin A. Beavers couldn't think of someone better to represent UTC.
"He liked to have fun. He was a little bit of a jokester at times, but also, when it was time to get the mission done, he was the one you wanted on your team. Usually leading that team, and he was committed to accomplish that mission,” Beavers said.
Since then, he has been an army ranger and is now stationed outside of Washington D.C.
His wife, Lauren, posted a video on Facebook of Joey during George H.W. Bush's funeral services.
Seeing all the love and support Chattanooga has offered makes Mike eager for Joey's holiday visit.
"I can't wait for him to be home. Neither can Pat. Pat and I can't wait for him to be home,” Royster said.
Beavers said within months of a president taking office, they work with the Old Guard on funeral arrangements.