By Tammy Moore Teague
The family of Specialist Robert Allan Pierce will forever miss their hero, America’s Hero. But, they feel his work isn’t finished. So, they are on a mission honoring Pierce’s memory: “Not Gone, Not Forgotten.”
Part of that mission is the “Warm the Veterans” drive. Donations of coats, clothing and warm materials will be collected and donated directly to The Next Step Homeless Services. If you are interested in donating to “Warm the Veterans” you can drop those items off at a drop box at Anza’s Style Shop in Mansfield.
Pierce, 20, joined the Army in April 2011 and served in Korea before August 2012, when he was stationed in Fort Campbell, KY., to serve with A Company, 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division. On June 3, 2013 Pierce was killed in a suicide-bomber attack on his unit in Tsamkani, Afghanistan, in the Paktia province, while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. His brother, Kyle Dart said “Allan enlisted to serve his country and fight the battle that most hate to think about. He gave his life for all. That is why we help all in need. This drive is about letting those who are struggling know that we haven’t forgotten about them. The fight to end veteran and civilian homelessness continues, but what we can do in the present is take the strength and courage our hero showed and continue his service. When we deliver these donations, we see our hero living through the people we are helping. We will never be able to repay the debt we owe the ones who have served and lost but we can pick up the fight here at home.”
Pierce spent the younger days of his life in Panama, OK. Afterwards, he transferred to Mansfield to finish out high school. It was here that Pierce would meet his future wife. This Gold Star Family of siblings, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins and in-laws spans two states. “We are a Gold Star Family, we miss our hero, but his work isn’t finished,” stated Dart. “We mourn the loss of a soldier that didn’t return but we cannot forget the ones who did. Our mission started as “Not Gone, Not Forgotten” with a goal of taking care of those who served but have fallen on hard times. What we discovered was that there were many more in need than just veterans.”
The family celebrates the ties that bind them, those memories of the one they love so much. “Allan had so much love in his soul,” concluded Dart. “He never gave anyone less than his all. A family that was divided, Arkansas and Oklahoma, the religious and the not, the conservative and the liberal, and the Razorbacks and the Sooners, all sharing a special bond in the relationship we had with Allan.”
Pierce’s family will be attending the Mansfield Christmas parade and plan to take Pierce’s truck on a cruise of the town one more time. During this time they will hand out flyers with information about the drive and American Hero SPC Pierce.
By Tammy Moore Teague