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Hundreds of people proudly came together in Sarasota, Florida today, Oct. 1, to say goodbye to an Army veteran, Edward Karl Pearson, who died alone.

The flood of attendees backed up traffic, threatening to delay the service itself. Many of them were fellow veterans.

Pearson, a Naples resident, had no immediate family when he died on Aug. 31 at the age of 80, according to the funeral home, Fox News reported.

Pearson served from 1962 to 1964 and he was a private first class in the U.S. Army, according to Edward Lyons, assistant cemetery director, The Naples Daily News reported. His funeral with military honors was at 12:30 p.m. at the Sarasota National Cemetery.

People from all over the country wanted to make sure Pearson was not alone.

“I think it shows the human side of all of us and the fact that we care about other people besides just ourselves and people that have served us and afford us the freedom we have today,” said Michael Hoyt, WFLA reported.

“I just felt the urge to. Everybody deserves to have somebody see them leave,” offered retired Army veteran Donald Johnson.

“It’s very touching because it’s sad when you don’t have anybody there in your family,” added Michael Guy, a retired Army Ranger. “I’m the last one in my family. I know how it feels when everyone you love is gone and passed away. Even your fallen buddies that you served with are gone and you wonder why are you still here.”

The funeral was at Sarasota National Cemetery located at 9810 State Road 72 at 12:30 p.m. at Shelter B.

Tags: Categories: U.S. Florida