Dozens of flag-bearing Patriot Guard Riders on motorcycles led a lengthy funeral procession for Sgt. Brett Gornewicz in Alden Monday.
Gornewicz, 27, was among three Army Reservists from New York killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan on November 3. The reservists were assigned to the 444th Engineer company, which is headquartered in Oswego.
Gornewicz was a graduate of Alden High School and Buffalo State College. Hundreds of mourners, some spilling out in to the parking lot of St. John the Baptist Church, were on hand for the Monday morning service.
Robert Jarmusz was among the pallbearers who all wore matching red white and blue striped ties. Jarmusz, who grew up a few doors away Gornewicz, says they had "a blast of a childhood" and he will "miss him dearly."
"We were all great friends, best friends, with Brett. When we got the honor of being pallbearers, we wanted to unify ourselves even more so," Jarmusz said of the matching outfits.
Along with Sgt. Gornewicz, Specialist Ryan P. Jayne from Campbell and Staff Sgt. Dain T. Venne, from Port Henry, were also killed in the explosion. Governor Cuomo ordered flags on state buildings be flown at half-staff last Wednesday, November 7, in honor of the three reservists.