MIDDLEVILLE, Mich (WOOD) - Cpl. Nick Roush's body returned home to West Michigan on Friday,with mourners gathered along the route from the airport to paytheir respects to the 22-year-old killed in Afghanistan.
Roush died Sunday in Herat, Afghanistan after a improvisedexplosive device exploded near his vehicle.
Mourners lined the procession route from the Gerald R. FordInternational Airport to the First Baptist Church, 5215 N. M-37,north of Middleville.
A Middleville native, Roush was last home at Easter. He leftfor Afghanistan after his visit.
The Roush family asked for people to line the route between theairport and Middleville. One of his church sponsors fromjunior high was among the crowd. Josh Randall said " Wellit's important to us. Nicky was, we were his junior high sponsorsat church at Middleville and like they say it's teaching our kidsrespect for what he's done for our country."
The procession itself was attended by police cars and fireequipment from multiple departments and an honor guard of dozens ofmotorcycles.
At Cpl Roush's home church in Middleville, First Baptist,hundreds waited along a highway lined with flags.
There was no ceremony planned for the church but it was aplace for people to gather and they did after the processionarrived. People stood quietly for the next half hour, paying theirrespects to the fallen soldier, to his family.
"I remember when I was a little girl the whole town coming outfor my uncle robert' who was on the Arizona at Pearl Harbor andwhen something like this comes up we do what we can for ourservicemen" said Mary Ann Quinlan.
Among the crowds were people who knew Nick Roush and hisfamily and those who didn't but wanted to be there---a kind ofcommon bond crafted from tragedy. Some of those people wereconnected as well by their faith.
"We're friends of the family but they're fellow christians andwe just came to, when somebody is hurting we're all hurting" saidAaron Smith.
Roush is survived by his parents, Bob and Donna, and hisbrothers, Bobby and Kyle.
Visitation will be held from 5-8 p.m. Sunday, and noon-2 p.m.and 5-8 p.m. Monday at First Baptist Church, in Middleville.
Roush's funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. Tuesday. The servicewill be streamed live on woodtv.com
His burial will be at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Middleville withfull military honors.
GRAM Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony in front of a festive downtown crowd at Rosa Parks Circle Friday night.
Two people were taken to the hospital after one vehicle crossed the center line, causing a head-on crash in Ada Township Friday night.
Roads are either snow-covered, slushy or slick Monday morning.