A community came together Friday to offer its support for fallen U.S. Army Sgt. Jeremy Sherman on Friday, as mourners gathered along highways and country roads to pay tribute as his remains were taken from Chicago to his hometown of Watseka.
Sherman, 23, was one of five American soldiers killed when a Black Hawk helicopter crashed in Egypt last week.
Residents lined the streets of Watseka, the county seat of Iroquois County that is 90 miles south of Chicago, on Friday afternoon as a somber procession took place in Sherman’s memory.
Mayor John Allhands says that Sherman was a graduate of Watseka High School in 2015, and that the young soldier had always wanted to join the armed forces throughout his life.
“I think this was his aspiration all through life,” he said. “Talking to some of his teachers from elementary school, they said this is what he wanted to do.”
Sherman joined the Army right out of high school, serving in South Korea, Afghanistan and in Egypt. He was serving as a crew chief on the helicopter that crashed in Egypt last week, and was studying to become a Black Hawk pilot.
Sherman left behind a wife, his parents and two siblings when he passed away, and now a community is left to pick up the pieces as it copes with the grief after his death.
“That’s the outpouring of love when something like this happens under such tragic conditions,” added Allhands. “It’s an outpouring of how much these small communities care for people from their hometown.”