UPDATED 1:55 PM PT – Wednesday, September 1, 2021
Hundreds of people gathered in Massachusetts for a vigil to honor fallen Marine Corps Sgt. Johanny Rosario Pichardo. Her life was celebrated with the attendance of her friends, family and community.
The ceremony was held on Tuesday at Veterans Memorial Stadium in her hometown of Lawrence, north of Boston. The crowd gathered close to sing “God Bless America” in the fallen Marine’s honor.
The mayor of the town, Kendrys Vasquez, called her a special person for their community, praising her for joining the Marines right out of high school. He said the 25-year-old would not be forgotten in their town, following through on a promise he made to her family.
“This is a time for us to come together as one community to pay tribute to the heroic actions of Johanny. Further, this is time for us as a community, as a state, and as a nation to come together to honor those who currently are or have served our country, and their families,” said Vasquez.
Gov. Charlie Baker also attended the vigil. He paraphrased an old proverb, saying the brightest stars all too often burn out the fastest. The governor called Rosario a Massachusetts hero gone too soon.
“When we see the sun rise and the sun set, and that full moon shine in this city, in this commonwealth, I hope you all take a moment to remember one of our brightest stars Johanny Rosario Pichardo.” After the ceremony, the governor went and embraced Rosario’s grieving mother.
Sgt. Rosario is one of 13 U.S. service members killed in a terrorist attack near the airport in Kabul. Vigils and ceremonies for the fallen are set to take place across the country in the coming days.
I cosponsored legislation today to award the Congressional Gold Medal to Sgt. Johanny Rosario Pichardo and her fellow servicemembers who were killed in action in Afghanistan last week. Each of them are heroes and more than deserving of the highest honor Congress can bestow.
— Congresswoman Lori Trahan (@RepLoriTrahan) September 1, 2021