Captain Frank Hamer died in 1955. He was one of the most infamous rangers of his time. When a ranger dies, a special cross is placed at their grave, but Hamer never got one.
On Sunday, there was a full ceremony to honor Hamer, with a cannon and rifle salute, prayer and of course the unveiling of the Texas Ranger memorial cross. Hamer was a ranger for more than 30 years, and had quite the career.
He was credited for capturing and killing the famous outlaws bonnie and Clyde. He also fought defend due process for African Americans during the Jim Crow era, who were falsely accused of crimes.
Many former rangers and even some descendants of Hamer attended Sunday's ceremony. The memorial cross ceremonies are put together by the Former Texas Rangers Association and the Texas Historical Foundation. The idea is to preserve Texas history.
"When a person passes away the last song is sang and the last prayer is said. There's only one thing that you can do for that person and that's to keep his memory alive. That's one of the main reasons we're here today. Even though he's gone and has been for some time we're here to remember him and keep his memory alive for his service to this great state," said Joe Davis, President of the Former Texas Rangers Foundation.
The Texas Ranger memorial crosses are usually requested by descendants or family members and then are donated free of charge by a state grant program.