Earlier this year, Legionnaire and Air Force veteran Dustin DeMoss got together with friend Clint Davis – a Navy and Oklahoma Army National Guard veteran – to figure out a way to honor a few servicemembers killed in the line of duty from their hometown of Gower, Mo. That idea has turned into the American Hero Project – one DeMoss hopes will continue to grow.
Each week, American Hero Project posts a tribute to a fallen servicemember on both its website and Facebook page. The project now focuses on servicemembers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan but will include servicemembers killed in all wars.
"Myself and Clint Davis wanted to honor Cpl. Joshua Ware and a few others from our hometown, and then we decided, ‘Well, how could we honor all heroes,’ with the American Hero Project as a way to honor and remember fallen heroes," said DeMoss, 27, who served in the Air Force from 2005-2007 and is now 100-percent service-connected. "We thought about it for a few days and came up with a few ideas.
"The first one was an idea to create a website where families could submit information, then we decided that just wasn’t good enough. We had seen some memes on Facebook that (guilted) people to remember fallen heroes, and we thought that isn’t a dignified way of remembering them. So we decided to use social media and put a website up to remember them."
The tributes that appear on the site include first-person accounts from family members. The project is a labor of love for DeMoss and Davis.
"We really like reading the stories of the heroes and getting information from their family and friends about them," DeMoss said. "It is inspiring to honor these brave souls and to learn about them."
DeMoss, a member of Post 393 in Gower, said he hopes for the project to attain non-profit status and plans to continue to promote it through various media channels.