December 8, 2013
DECATUR, Ala. (AP) - About 1,000 mourners attended the funeral of Staff Sgt. Joshua Rath, a 22-year-old described as a "courageous hero" who was killed by a suicide bomber in Afghanistan on Jan. 8.
At his funeral Monday in Decatur, the military presented Rath posthumously with a "special" Purple Heart that includes a "v" for valor and a Bronze Star.
Rath's 12-year-old sister, Julia Rath, spoke during the two-hour service at Calvary Assembly of God, saying her brother would do anything for her, even attend her choral concert during a recent visit home.
She says he would act tough and cool, but she knew his kind, loving side.
Rath was laid to rest with military honors at East Lawrence Cemetery.
(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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