Semper Fi Fest Memorial Ride honors those killed while serving

By Sarah Acosta, Mariah Medina - Digital Journalist

NEW BRAUNFELS - Three Canyon High School graduates killed while serving their country were remembered during an honorary motorcycle ride through the hill country Memorial Day weekend.

The annual Semper Fi Fest at Gruene Harley Davidson has raised thousands of dollars to support those killed in action, along with charities of the families' choosing.

On Saturday, the families of the slain marines gathered for the fourth annual Semper Fi Fest Memorial Ride.

Marine Lance Corporal John Farias was shot by the Taliban in Afghanistan in June of 2011. His best friend who enlisted with him, Marine Sergeant Thomas Spitzer, was killed three years later in Afghanistan on the front lines. Both were best friends and graduates of Canyon High School.

Marine Lance Corporal Brandon Lara, a Canyon High School graduate, was also killed on the front lines in Iraq.

People from across the state gathered to remember the three.

The memorial ride was founded four years ago when officials with Gruene Harley Davidson reached out to the families of the fallen soldiers to offer their support.

Farias’ mother said the support she's received from the New Braunfels community has helped her get through her worst nightmare come true.

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