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Gold Star families from Tennessee, Kentucky recognized before UT game

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) - There was more than just the Tennessee vs Kentucky showdown at Neyland Stadium Saturday afternoon. Right before the game, there was a special tribute for gold star families from Tennessee and Kentucky. 
  
And there's also a national memorial on UT's campus this weekend.
  
WATE 6 On Your Side's Elizabeth Kuebel visited that memorial with a local woman whose brother died in war.

"Everyone he met, he would bring out the best in them. He had such an optimistic look on life," said Amie Whitworth. "He was assassinated in Afghanistan in 2011. April 27. He was Lt. Col. Frank D. Bryant Jr., AKA Bruiser." 

Whitworth is honoring her younger brother this weekend. He was a father and husband, killed in battle when he was 37 years old

His picture is one among many on a national traveling memorial right now set up at UT. 

"My goal by bringing this one here was to really just the people that would walk through here, they would stop and think this is the ultimate sacrifice," said Eddie Mannis, Chairman of HonorAir Knoxville.

The university also paid tribute at the game today.

30 Gold Star families from both Tennessee and Kentucky were recognized on the field right before kick off. 

"I'm looking forward to it, but at the same time I wish I wasn't doing it," Whitworth said before the ceremony. "And it's going to be amazing to be in that sea of white and orange, that sea of orange that we always talk about here in Tennessee, and representing my brother out there on the field. I think that's going to be amazing," she said. "It shows that the University of Tennessee is also acknowledging that these individuals are an important part of every day and they should be an important part of everybody."

The memorial will be set up until 4 p.m. Sunday. It's on the pedestrian walkway of UT's campus. That's between Hodges Library and the Clarence Brown theater. 
 


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