By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Wyoming U.S. Marine Cpl. Seth Rasmuson may have been young when he died, but his sacrifice for his country was valued, nonetheless, those who turned out for a procession in his honor said on Monday.
Shona Armstrong is a Canada native who married an American soldier, so she felt a strong drive to honor Rasmuson when the procession carrying his body, escorted by members of the Wyoming Highway Patrol, drove through Cheyenne on Monday afternoon on its way to Buffalo.
“There’s a sense of patriotism here that you don’t see in Canada,” Armstrong told Cowboy State Daily on Monday, holding a large American flag. “I’m really grateful that we’re proud of our country and our soldiers. They’re not forgotten here like they are in Canada. It’s very different.”
Rasmuson, a 2019 Buffalo High School graduate, was among five Marines killed earlier this month in a training exercise when an Osprey helicopter crashed in the desert near the border between California and Arizona.
The procession carrying Rasmuson’s body followed I25 from Denver to Buffalo and over the weekend, Sheridan Facebook user Kristen King called on Wyoming residents to welcome him back home to Wyoming one final time.
Bill and Miriam Abernathy were sent the information about the procession by their daughter in Kansas, showing how far the call for people had reached.
“My dad was in the service and I just respected everything he did for this country,” Bill Abernathy said. “My uncle is actually still missing in North Korea. I respect what he ultimately sacrificed for this country. But somebody has to carry the torch, and that’s exactly what I’m doing.”
The trio waved flags above I25 at an overpass in Cheyenne, getting a “lot” of honks from passersby, they said.
More people gathered across the state at various overpasses to welcome Rasmuson back to Wyoming and to honor the young man’s sacrifice.
Rasmuson left behind his wife with whom he graduated and a 7-month-old son.
He received many commendations including the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.
Rasmuson’s funeral services will be held this week in Buffalo.
Donations in Seth’s memory may be made to the Seth Rasmuson Memorial, a fund set up for his son Reed’s education in care of Harness Funeral Home at 351 N. Adams in Buffalo.