Hundreds of people gathered at Silverbrook Cemetery in Niles Wednesday afternoon for the burial of a Vietnam War veteran who has no living relatives.
Wayne Wilson, also known as “Sarge,” was buried with military honors which included the playing of taps, a 21-gun salute, and the folding and presentation of the American Flag. Charlotte Andrews, a friend who knew Wilson for nearly 25 years, received the flag.
She said she was overwhelmed and had to fight back tears when seeing how many people came to the service.
“They wanted to make sure that he knew, if he could look down and see that he had thousands and thousands of friends, he just didn’t know they were all there, and this community gathering is just awesome,” Andrews said.
Families, veterans, and others watched as over one hundred motorcycles led the procession into the cemetery.
Andrews said the community gathered because they did not want a veteran to be buried without recognition.
Wilson died at the age of 67 during surgery to fix his heart defibrillator.