ST. LOUIS (KSDK) - Under the dark cold night, a group of men with flags stood as still as they could. You could only hear the silence touched with the solemness of a sacrifice in the cargo area of Lambert Airport.
Staff Sgt. Eric Summers was almost home. His body, tightly secure in a black coffin, carried by comrades slid into the hearse that waited for him.
One last trip. One last time back home to Poplar Bluff, where he started his journey 32 years ago.
He died during a bomb removal training exercise at Camp Pendleton.
"He was a career marine, he had 10 years in, he was going to go for 20. He has a wife a daughter his parents are with us,".
Bob Smith was one of the patriot guard riders in that small group of men with flags. He didn't know Summers. Smith wore the uniform in Vietnam. "The people from the Vietnam era made it easier for this era, you wouldn't have seen this back then," he said.
He comes to honor every fallen hero.
Summers' funeral and visitation will be on Friday and Saturday. Governor Jay Nixon ordered flags be flown half staff on Saturday to honor Summers bravery.