When Navy veteran with no family or friends died in Long Beach, Mississippi, six young men did something for him that sent a powerful message to the world.
Jerry Wayne Pino, 70, died on Dec. 12. After his body lay unclaimed for several weeks at Riemann Family Funeral Home, funeral home worker Cathy Warden and a friend decided something had to be done. They asked some of the boys at Long Beach High School if they would step up and be pallbearers for Pino.
Just minutes after Warden placed a phone call to her son, six young men had volunteered to serve at Pino’s funeral.
On Tuesday morning, JT Tripp, Bailey Griffin, Joseph Ebberman, Jake Strong, Kenny McNutt and James Kneiss stepped up for the fallen veteran, whose funeral took place at the Biloxi National Cemetery.
The Fort Worth Star Telegram reported that Pino had served in Vietnam. He joined the Navy in 1970 and left the service as a petty officer third class.
The Gulfport Sun Herald reported that the Navy provided honor guards at Pino’s funeral. The American flag draped over Pino’s casket was presented to funeral director Jim Hudson who, in turn, gave the flag to the boys.
“It was the right thing to do,” 17-year-old Bailey Griffin told Fox News. “He served our country. He fought for our rights. For him to be buried with nobody there was just sad. I told myself I was going to do it and I did it.”
Warden expressed pride in what the teenagers did.
“It doesn’t cost anything to take some time to do something like this,” Warden told the Herald. “If our young people can figure this out, our country is going in the right direction.”
It’s hard to argue with her about that. What these young men did speaks volumes about their character.
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H/T Todd Starnes