Going home

Published 6:11pm Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Sergeant Justin Johnson was escorted to Florida and Sergeant Walker boarded a plane to Kennewick, Wash. with her 20-year-old soldier, Spc. Ellis. She was alone with just the pilot and co-pilot as she made sure every detail of reverence was afforded her soldier.

In Washington, she presented to Jon and Joelle, Spc. Robert Ellis’ parents and his younger brother Jimmy.

Sergeant Walker stayed for every funeral service straight through his burial with honors.

After, the first Sergeant Walker called her parents and her father answered. “Dad,” she said weeping, “This was the most difficult duty I’ve ever pulled.”

“Kim,” I answered, weeping along with her, “I have never been more proud of you than I am at this very moment.”

I will be writing a letter to the Ellis’ thanking them for their sacrifice. I will get as many VFW friends to sign it and I will try to get our newspaper to contact theirs to have it published.

In the meantime, enjoy our Independence Day and as you celebrate, never forget what Specialist Robert Ellis died for.

– Leonard Rizzo, Columbus

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