POTTSVILLE — West Market Street in Pottsville was packed with mourners while family and friends remembered the life of Army Captain Jason B. Jones.
Military officials said the 29 year old from Orwigsburg died Monday after a small arms fight near Jalalabad, Afghanistan.
American flags filled the streets as did the Pennsylvania Patriot Guard Riders who said they are honored to hold the flags in memory of the Army Captain.
“When our young people die in combat, their troops and fellow soldiers, they’re brothers and sisters, they’re still in conflict, they can’t be here to say good-bye. So, we kind of look at ourselves as surrogates,” said Doug “Doc” Kimball with the Patriot Guard Riders.
In Orwigsburg, people have set up a memorial in Jones’ hometown. When his body is brought back to Pennsylvania, one of his final rides will be through the heart of the borough.
“The town is all excited and wants to say thank you,” said Kimball.
The Army Captain leaves behind a wife, parents and sister. The Jones family asked that any contributions in memory of Jason be made to organizations that were closest to his heart.
“The Wounded Warrior Project is one of them that they want to have contributions, said Ronald Downey, a friend of the Jones family.
Friends said Jones loved animals, especially his dog.
Which is why, the Animal Protection Society of Durham in North Carolina is the other organization where donations can be made in his honor.
While many are devastated over the loss of the Schuylkill County native, they said they will remember the soldier’s bravery.
“It’s a shame, but he was doing what he wanted to do. He volunteered for this and I commend him. I thank him for his service,” said Downey.
Jones’ final resting place will be at the United States Military Academy at West Point.