Body of Letcher Co. soldier killed during mission escorted home
LETCHER COUNTY, Ky. - A procession escorted the body of Staff Sergeant Abby Milam, 32, 190 miles from Knoxville, Tennessee to her hometown of Jenkins in Letcher County.
People line the streets of Laurel County to pay their respects as the body of Staff Sergeant Abby Milam was escorted to Letcher County on Wednesday, October 11, 2017.
Milam was one of five soldiers killed when a Black Hawk helicopter crashed off the coast of Hawaii back in August. Milam entered active-duty military service in August 2011 as a Black Hawk helicopter repairer. The cause of the crash that killed her is under investigation.
The Patriot Guard led a procession through several counties including Laurel, Perry and Letcher County. Dozens of people lined the side of Kentucky 192 in London as the procession went by.
"We just want to honor our soldiers. There is nothing that we can do that’s more important than letting our soldiers know that we support them 100%," said Frank Wayne Baker.
"I think there should be a lot more people on the side of the road to honor her because without people like Abby and everybody else that’s fallen in service we wouldn’t have a free country to live in," said Annie Parker.
Some of those who gathered were veterans who planned to join the procession as it went on to Letcher County.
"It makes you feel like everybody is supporting your country," said Roger Harold Smith.
Friends and family held a vigil for Milam just after the crash happened. Her funeral is scheduled for Saturday, October 14 at 1 p.m. at Hemphill Freewill Baptist Church.