FORT CARSON, Colo. - At least 300 people attended a memorial service for a Colorado native who died while serving in Operation Enduring Freedom.
Pfc. Jacob Wykstra, 21, grew up in Thornton and was awarded a Bronze Star. He was killed in an aircraft accident May 28 while deployed to Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.
Pfc. Ian Brannigan, a childhood friend and comrade of Wykstra, said the fallen soldier will be remembered for his sense of humor and friendliness.
"He was always the kid who would sit with someone sitting alone at lunch," Brannigan said. "That's the kind of guy he was. I guess I was that kid, once upon a time."
Among surviving family members are Wykstra's wife, parents, stepparents, two brothers and a sister.
The ceremony was held at the Provider Chapel.