National Guard Unit Reunites to Honor Fallen Comrades - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

National Guard Unit Reunites to Honor Fallen Comrades

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Revving engines and waving flags commenced a day dedicated to honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. The families of the seven fallen soldiers from the North Dakota National Guard's 957th Unit met those who served alongside their loved ones.

"It was nice to meet all of his friends that were over there," said Jerry Fettig. "It was a part of him we didn't see they became his family after he left us."

Fettig lost his son, Jon, back in 2003, when the military vehicle he was driving was hit by a grenade while serving in Iraq. Two other soldiers from 957 were also killed in action.But not all battles are fought on the front line. The unit has lost 3 soldiers to suicide and one to cancer since returning home ten years ago.

"The wounds of war they're not always visible so that's very important to make sure we keep in touch with everybody make sure everybody's doing good," said Vanessa Lennick.

Fettig says this reunion is about uniting a bigger family.

"We're not celebrating a death, we're celebrating a life that was lived."

And unit members had a surprise up their sleeves. Filled with stories, pictures, and memories, books were made in memory of each of the fallen. And while tears were hard to hold back, so was laughter. While his family may have endured a devastating loss, Fettig says the tragedy introduced him to a new family that he can always count on for support.

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