Woman honored for 'adopting' WWII graves

Because of her, 1,700 soldiers in France are remembered

ATHENS, Ala. - A French woman was honored in Athens for her work with the tombstones of Limestone County soldiers from World War II.

Because of Jocelyne Papelard-Brescia, the soldiers beneath the 1,700 graves in a small town in France are remembered. She started a project to "adopt" them and honor each person she calls "her boy."

She now works to connect family members with their loved ones' graves and unexpectedly did this at a restaurant in Athens.

"She showed me the picture and I have known that boy since four years, Papelard-Brescia said. "I always go to his grave. I recognized him and it was one of the greatest moments of my life."

She says knowing the faces of the young men is a way to keep their spirits alive.

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