"He was not the kid to sit back in the corner," Kilpela's teacher, Kirstin Atlee remembers.
Andy, as they call him, was involved, she says. In the yearbook, he's pictured with the JV soccer team, the wrestling team, and as a powderpuff cheerleader his junior year.
She says he wasn't, in her mind, a kid she expected to choose the Marines and when he told her, she was skeptical of his decision.
Nonetheless, Kilpela embraced the challenge and returned after boot camp to show off his success. "He was in full military dress; he looked fantastic," Atlee says. "He looked like, not a high school kid anymore."
Fifty-four soldiers have been killed from Michigan. Over 1700 are dead from across the U.S.
The funeral will be held at 11 AM on Monday at St. Agnes Catholic Church in Fowlerville. Lance Corporal Kilpela will be buried in Greenwood Cemetery immediately after.