"He was a great guy. He joined the United States Army. Then he became a great man."
Not a seat in the LaPorte High School auditorium was empty, as friends, family and community members gathered for Jason Beadles' funeral service.
Beadles, 22 years old, was serving with the 887th Engineering Unit in Iraq. He was accidentally electrocuted on April 12th, while moving concrete barriers in Baghdad.
"Jason paid the ultimate price."
After the service, Ashley Weaver talks about what she'll miss most about the man she grew up with.
"He just loved everybody. He was just a nice, nice person," Weaver said, barely holding back her tears.
The silence outside the high school was broken by the sound of motorcycles--about 100 of them. The Patriot Guard Riders traveled from many miles, to line up, and give Beadles, what they call, "an appropriate greeting."
"Not even knowing these people, it just takes it all out of you," says the captain of the Patriot Guard Riders, Steve Morgan.
And the support continued on the way to the cemetery, as hundreds of community members lined the streets.
"God Bless them and hope they get through this but he did it for our country," says Holly Day, standing next to her son waiving the American flag.
And at the burial grounds, you hear the customary gun shots and the melody of "taps."
Beadles may be gone, but he symbolizes strength, pride, and freedom.
Kind of like the flag he fought...and died...to defend.