One Ton Photography

Alvin had the solemn honor of welcoming home one of our fallen heros today [12/2/09].  It was a very emotional scene, with Highway 6 lined with people and flags on both sides, as far as the eye could see.  Local law enforcement and Fire Depts, as well as many family members and friends escorted this Fallen Hero home.

US Army Sgt. James Nolen, 25, died on Nov. 22, 2009 from injuries sustained when his vehicle was attacked with an IED.  He was stationed in Zabul province, Afghanistan.  He was a member of the 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne division from Ft. Bragg, N.C.  He had previously served a 15 month deployment in 2007.  During his service, Sgt Nolen received: a Bronze Star, the Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge, Parachute Badge and various other battalion medals.

The event was so moving you could have heard a pin drop on that long mile stretch of Texas state highway.  Only the sound of flags furling and unfurling in the strong cold November wind were heard.  My daughter, who has aspirations of joining the military, and learning to help fellow soldiers in the area of Physical or Occupational therapy, was very touched by the entire scene.  While sitting in a restaurant afterwards, she began writing on a napkin, and the following poem was the result of all the emotions she had just encountered.  As she tried to read it to those of us with her, the pain was evident on how this event had affected her.  In her mind, she saw too many faces of her own family and friends that could have very well have been where Sgt. Nolen was today!
A copy of this was printed & framed and will be given to the family
Please, if you pass this along, just make sure that the credit for this original work goes to Amanda J Choate, Age 17, Alvin, TX. (she is in the last photo)  Photo credits: J Choate

Hometown Hero


The sky is cloudy as the wind blows cold. We lined the streets head to toe. Brothers, Mothers, Fathers and Sisters gathered to see a fallen one brought home. Lights in the distance.  Sirens all around. We leaned into the streets to see if he was finally homebound. Sheriffs, Constables, your local Police, Fire Fighters and Bikers surround the deceased. Slowly he arrives in a long black hearse, the drapes pulled closed. Peek into the window just to see the sliver of the man. Then turn back around and salute with our flags. A Father and Mother drive by, she looks ahead with tears in her eyes. Cousins, Uncles, Sisters and Aunts follow along with tissues in their hands. Fellow Army men, Navy and Vet’s follow along trying to resist. The idea of a Brother long gone now, so young, so young nothing can be done. My prayers to the Father.  My love to the Mother. Think back now as we slowly drift away, back into the crowd to finish the rest of the day. He could have been one of ours, a Friend or a Lover. But to us he was more, not just another soldier, but a fallen Hero.  Sergeant, please rest in peace and find your post at Heavens Gates.


“May good health and long life come to the family Of Sergeant James Nolen.”


Yours truly,

Cadet 2nd Lieutenant Amanda Jae Choate

Alvin High School MCJROTC

On this day of our Lord ~ December 02, 2009

Poem is an original work by AJC for the Nolen Family


Amanda, my 16 y/o daughter, is a member of the Alvin High School MCJROTC Program.  She plans to attend ACC and possibly join the US Military.

She has always had the want to help others and a desire to join the military.  This will be her ideal way to join the two.  We support our daughter's decision to join the military and are very proud of her decision.

                                                      The Choate's - 2009

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