WENTZVILLE, Mo. — A collective show of gratitude and support swells throughout the St. Louis area as we grieve a fallen marine killed in Afghanistan.
Supporters lined Wentzville Parkway to show support for Jared Schmitz and his family. He was one of 13 service members killed by a suicide bomber near the Kabul airport earlier this week.
"We are so proud of our kids but we also worry about them,” Julie Rodgers, president of Blue Star Mothers of America, Lincoln County chapter said. "When something like this happens, we worry because it could happen to any of us."
Rodgers is married to a vet and has a son serving overseas. She’s proud to be shoulder-to-shoulder with other Americans who share her respects for the sacrifice made by Schmitz and other service members.
“We are proud of them and that usually outweighs our fears so that's what we focus on,” Rodgers said. “We try to focus on and appreciate our veterans who struggle during these times."
Brad Buescher saw the rally this morning and knew he had to be there.
“It's an obligation every American has because these guys give everything they have for our country and I think it's fitting people show respect and support for our service people," Buescher said.
As the community wraps their arms around this hero and his family, Rodgers said the best way to honor him is to never forget.