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State

Crowds gather to honor fallen soldier

Aaron Toppen
Aaron Toppen

MOKENA (AP) – The body of a 19-year-old soldier killed in Afghanistan has been brought back to his Illinois hometown.

Dozens of cars and motorcycles decked with American flags took part in a procession Saturday to accompany the remains of Army Pfc. Aaron Toppen after his casket arrived at Chicago’s Midway International Airport.

Along the 20-mile route to Mokena, crowds of people stood saluting and waving flags.

Toppen was one of five American service members killed this month by a U.S. airstrike called in to help defend against a Taliban ambush. He was deployed in March.

The soldier was the youngest of three children.

The funeral service is at 10 a.m. today at Parkview Christian Church in Orland Park.

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