Bryan, TX This Fourth of July a local family is celebrating freedom and also thanking their son as he prepares for his fifth deployment in the military .
Eric Bonner will spend the next two years deployed in South Korea.
The Stars and stripes decorate homes like this one in Bryan but it's what's in the backyard that matters most.
The Unity of Navasota Gospel Group was singing some patriotic praise for friend and loved one Eric Bonner.
"I've been in the military for 16 years actually. Actually Navasota is my hometown born and raised. And most of my family is in Navasota," said Sgt. First Class Eric Bonner of the U.S. Army.
He's had two tours to Iraq and two in Afghanistan and is now preparing for a two year deployment in South Korea.
"So we just want to send him off with a bang," said his mom Lynda Porch of College Station.
That bang included lots of barbecue.
For his mom Lynda Porch this day means a lot.
"It's a time to celebrate. A time to thank God first; for this day and being able to celebrate with them and Independence Day itself. It's a day of celebration for us especially with my son in the military," said Porch.
"I'd just like to say Happy Independence Day to everybody and to all the Brazos Valley, to all my family and classmates in Navasota and College Station. Thank you," said Bonner.
A small way to say thank you back as we celebrate our nation's birthday, mindful of who really keeps us free.
Sgt. First Class Eric Bonner leaves on the 7th while his wife and four kids will join him in South Korea later this month.
His mom and dad and other family members plan to visit him oversees at some point too.