Fallen Elkhart soldier returns home for the last time - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Fallen Elkhart soldier returns home for the last time

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Jesse Williams (Photo from Facebook.com) Jesse Williams (Photo from Facebook.com)

Staff Sergeant Jesse Williams' body returned to Elkhart Friday morning with an escort from the Patriot Guard.

Ssgt. Williams died December 17 along with five other people who were in a Black Hawk helicopter that went down in the Zabul Province of Afghanistan.  His body arrived at South Bend Airport Friday morning with friends, family, and the Patriot Guard waiting.

The Patriot Guard is a national volunteer organization of motorcycle riders who honor members of the military during memorial services.  Ssgt. Williams parents, Debbie and Sam, are members of the Patriot Guard.

Russ Bauer, a Captain with the Northeast Indiana Chapter of the Patriot Guard and Vietnam veteran, says Americans now are much more respectful of military service men and women.  "The recognition today is so much more, so much better," says Bauer.  "And certainly heartwarming that the communities in the area come out in force to let Debbie and Sam know that his sacrifice won't be forgotten.

Visitation for Ssgt. Williams is set for January 2 at Granger Community Church from 4:00pm until 8:00pm.  The funeral service will be January 3 starting at 1:00pm.

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