National Guardsman killed in Black Hawk crash returns home for burial

National Guardsman killed in Black Hawk crash returns home for burial
George Strother served in the La. Nat'l Guard from 1988-2007, and again from 2009 until his death. He deployed to Iraq in 2004-2005, Afghanistan in 2011 and Kosovo in 2014. He also served during state deployments for Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Isaac
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)
(Source: KALB)

PINEVILLE, LA (WAFB) - The plane carrying Chief Warrant Officer 4 David Strother's body touched down at Esler Field in Pineville Tuesday morning. The Hammond-based pilot was one of the four Guardsmen killed in the Black Hawk crash March 10 near Navarre, Florida.

Family, friends, members of the military and thousands of supporters welcomed CW4 Strother back to Rapides Parish. Supporters lined the roads waving a flag, holding signs of support and paying their respects to the Louisiana soldier as the hearse escorted by a procession of military and law enforcement officers made its way to Alexandria.

Visitation for CW4 Strother will be held on March 25 from noon to 9 p.m. and March 26 from noon to 4 p.m. at the Alexandria Riverfront Convention Center. The funeral service will follow the visitation on March 26 before he is buried at the Alexandria Memorial Gardens at sunset.

"David was a former Pineville Rebel," said Pineville High football coach Robbie Martin. "It's important to represent former Pineville Rebels, and it's also important to represent the military and have these kids understand the sacrifices these guys make for us and them."

Three other Guardsmen were killed in the crash.

Staff Sergeant Lance J. Bergeron will return to Louisiana at the National Guard facility in Hammond at 10 a.m. March 25. No visitation or funeral services have been announced yet, but a Celebration of Life ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. March 30 at the Woodland Park Baptist Church in Hammond.

Staff Sergeant Thomas Florich will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery. CW4 Wayne Griffin, Jr. was buried in Lafayette Monday.

No details have been released by the National Guard about a memorial fund for the Guardsmen's families.

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