President Obama mentions fallen AZ soldier in Memorial Day remarks

A fallen Mesa soldier is honored in President Obama's Memorial Day address at Arlington National Cemetery.

Specialist Wyatt Martin was the first fallen soldier to be mentioned by the President.

Martin's parents attended a somber Memorial Day ceremony at the cemetery where their son was buried.

This time last year, they were having a going away party for their son, who was going to be deployed in July. He was killed in Afghanistan five months later.

"It does make you feel a little honored; a lot honored really when the President does mention your son," said Brian Martin.

"As an Arizona kid, Wyatt Martin loved the outdoors, he started fishing when he was 2-years-old, his dad says he was pretty good for a toddler," said President Barack Obama.

The President said 2,200 soldiers were killed in Operation Enduring Freedom. Martin and his Sergeant were singled out because they were the last two soldiers killed.

An IED exploded under their vehicle on December 12, 2014, just 16 days before the President announced the end of the combat mission.

"Wyatt grew to 6'4", became a hunter, and wore flannel shirts everyday, so his friends called him Paul Bunyon," said Obama.

The Martin's said they knew the President would mention their son, a speech writer for the President called them a week ago to gather information.

"We knew all about it; she wanted to make sure everything was really accurate and good," said Brian.

"Last summer Wyatt told his sister if something happens to me, know that I went happy," said Obama.

Less than six months after their son's death, the Martins say this memorial day takes on a new meaning for them.

"Wyatt wasn't just our son, he was an American soldier, he was part of this freedom we have, and I think some of us take it for granted, and it is really important," said Julie Martin.

In a ceremony in Gilbert on Friday, Representative Matt Salmon presented the family with a flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol in Wyatt's name.

To watch the President's speech visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u8U8pMRXFYo

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