It was a beautful morning. Clear blue skies. Warmer than normal temperatures. The Mississippi delta in full harvest mode. As I drove through the countryside on my way to the airport I though about so many things I had read about PFC Dawson. This was a young American, a Patriot, that was the epitome of a role model. Gone way too soon. Way too soon.
There was a large crowd at the airport. Family, close friends, former classmates, local dignitaries, civilans and police & fire department representatives from several counties. The airport personnel could not have been more respectful or honorable to PFC Dawson and his family.
The crowd who came to pay their respects was equally as thoughtful and considerate. Not a word was spoken once the plane landed and the flight crew began preparations for the casket to be removed from the jet. After PFC Dawson was on the tarmac the family gathered to say prayers over him as we all stood with our hands over our hearts and, in many cases, tears filling our eyes. It was one of the most gut wrenching yet touching moments I have ever experienced.
From MyEyeWitnessNews - " Brandon Dawson's family had hoped he would go to college and become a paramedic or a firefighter. Instead, after graduating from Rosa Fort High School in Tunica in 2009, Brandon decided to join the military, just as his mother, father, grandfather, uncle and brother had done"
His mother goes on to say in the article, "He was such a good child," she tells ABC24 about Brandon. "I never had any problems with him. He always did what he had to do. Always."
And when Private Dawson was told to drive the lead truck in his convoy while on patrol in Kabul, his mother says her son did what he had to do, following an order that would turn out to be his last. A shoulder-fired rocket hit Brandon's truck, killing him and another soldier.
His Uncle, Larry Williams, an Army man as well said helped raise Brandon and his three younger brothers and would like Mid-Southerners to remember his nephew as a true American patriot. "He was a man who did what he had to do for this country," he says with pride in his voice. "Because like I told him, there isn't any country like the United States."
Patriot Guard Riders and Rolling Thunder came from MS, TN and AR to honor PFC Dawson
There were police and fire department representatives from local and surrounding counties.
The line of motorcycles, police cars, fire deptartment vehicles and aother cars was a couple of miles long. When the motorcade left the Tunica, MS airport it made it's way past PFC Dawson's high school and down the main highway before turning into town for the funeral home. The high school allowed the students to line the roadway to pay their respects.
Citizens standing in respect for PFC Dawson
I found a facebook page by Military Wall of Honor that you should read. PFC Dawson's family members and community members tell about an incredible young man. INCREDIBLE. You can also read more about PFC Dawson in this article by the DeSoto Times Tribune.
Rest in Peace Brave Warrior. This American is grateful for your service and sacrifice and for the amazing family who miss you, love you and honor you so.