MT. JULIET, Tenn. — Middle Tennessee State University, home to the veterans and military family center that bears the name of the late Charlie Daniels, helped render military honors to the country music icon Wednesday night.
MTSU was represented at a memorial service outside Sellers Funeral Home for the singer by President Sidney A. McPhee and retired Army Lt. Gen. Keith Huber, MTSU’s senior advisor for veterans and leadership initiatives.
Daniels, 83, who died Monday after a stroke, was an honorary brigadier general in the Tennessee State Guard and, by that status, was afforded military honors by Army Maj. Gen. Jeff Holmes, the state’s adjutant general, in recognition of his devotion to the Armed Forces and veterans.
Huber, who worked with Daniels to found MTSU’s Charlie and Hazel Daniels Veterans and Military Family Center, was asked by Holmes to preside at the ceremony. The general presented the American flag that draped the singer’s coffin, folded by a military honor guard, to the Country Music Hall of Fame singer’s widow, Hazel.
Then, Holmes, who oversees the Tennessee State Guard as adjutant general, presented a second folded American flag to Charlie Daniels Jr., the singer’s son.
Finally, Army Maj. Gen. Max Haston, who aided Huber and Daniels with MTSU’s veterans center when he served as state adjutant general, presented the Tennessee State Flag to Hazel Daniels.
The ceremony began with a flyover of Army Blackhawk helicopters and ended with an Air Force honor guard fired a volley of three shots, followed by a military bugler who played Taps.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee delivered remarks and several performers, including Trace Adkins, Darryl Worley and Tracy Lawrence, honored Daniels with their music.
— Andrew Oppmann (Andrew.Oppmann@mtsu.edu)