Columbia, SC (WLTX) - After the death of Specialist John Meador, a community came together to make sure his family is taken care of.
At the Miss Stars and Stripes Pageant, it wasn't about talent or looks, it was about love.
"It has been overwhelming," said Director Cindy Clough, "because I started this thinking it would be our few pageant friends."
When Clough found out about Specialist Meador, all she wanted to do was help.
"Had to do something to show our appreciation for what she sacrificed and her family sacrificed. What we know best, and how we know Christy is pageants."
"I didn't know half of the stuff that was going on, I was just asked to be here with Elana and just show up," said Christy Meador.
Upon arrival, Christy did not know all of the money from the pageant and a silent auction would be going to help her family.
"I am overwhelmed with love from people that I don't even know. Just on the support and it makes you get through the day a little bit easier. "
Julie Jeffcoat drove her daughter two hours to show her support.
"We went around and collected silent auction items for her," said Jeffcoat, "and just show support to her family because it is a tough time no matter what. But we hope we can pull together and show her a lot of love today."
For Meador it's moments like these that shed a little light during a very dark time.
"It's going to be tough,: said Meador through tears. "Today is going to be tough but people coming out to remember him and support us... that's love."