19-year-old Private First Class Andrew Nelson will be buried in St. Johns on Saturday and along the way to his gravesite, the town plans to offer a patriotic tribute, fitting of the sacrifice he made.
As friends and family attend his visitation nearby, tributes to Pfc. Andrew Nelson already litter St. Johns.
"You hear about young men losing their lives, but it becomes really personal when it's your community," says Bob Kudwa, superintendent of St. Johns Public Schools.
Friday morning, the district will respond by passing out American flags to students and staff who will then line the route from First Baptist Church to the Mt. Rest Cemetary.
Clinton County's veterans will pick it up from there, with an acknowledgement they usually reserve for Memorial Day and Fourth of July.
They'll raise 530 flags they've collected over about 14 years from families of veterans. They are flags that, in many cases, draped the caskets...and, weather permitting, will line the entry to the cemetary where will be buried.
"It's gonna be quite a show to see," says Erick Richards, commander of the St. Johns honor guard.
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