Honoring the Fallen On an Interactive Map

By Camaron Abundes   
NewsWest 9

ODESSA- The numbers are impossible to miss on Google Earth Interactive map "mapthefallen.com." The map shows the number of men and women died in combat in Iraq or Afghanistan.

"He was a lot more than a number." Denise Garza said about her son Army Ranger Damian Garza who is among the 5,679 who died serving the country. "The way they died serving our country you don't want them to be forgotten."

Garza vowed to honor her son after someone reduced his death to the number reflecting his order in the Operation Enduring Freedom time line.

"People around the world are honoring him," Garza said. "He was a lot more than a number and to this day we refuse to repeat that number."

The numbers on the map are of some comfort to Garza who finds peace in the comments from people around the world, along with her son's old friends and former girlfriend.

"She really knew him and talked about that smile, we have a hard time living without," Garza said.

The project took years and although it's a little less conventional than the services like the one at the Odessa Cemetery on Monday.

"Someone else is doing something, and not just for Damian, for all of them." Garza said it's nice to see her son's name live on.