Crowds Line The Streets to Honor This Fallen Soldier, Here’s Why…
The streets of San Diego were lined with grateful Americans on Friday who came to honor the sacrifice of a Navy SEAL, the third to be killed in action in Iraq since 2014, who fell in a gun battle with ISIS last week.
Retired Navy officers, motorcycle-riding combat veterans, flag-waving schoolchildren, and mothers with strollers stood in silence, some in tears, as Charles Keating IV was taken to his final rest at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Keating, was promoted to chief petty officer posthumously, and awarded the Silver Star, a Purple Heart and Combat Action Ribbon for his effort to rescue U.S. military advisers who were ambushed by over 100 ISIS fighters.
“He gave his life to protect his brothers,” said Keating's younger brother, Billy, who is also a SEAL.
The mainstream media came under some criticism for highlighting the SEAL’s relationship with his grandfather, a disgraced financier who was sentenced to federal prison for his role in the savings and loan scandals of the 1990s, rather than presenting a full resume of his exceptional service.
The 31-year-old Arizona native, grew up with the goal of becoming a Navy SEAL, the service branch’s elite operations force, and “was a dedicated and professional SEAL, a true warrior,” according to a statement from his Coronado-based SEAL Team 1.
“The legacy he leaves behind, for his fellow SEALs and for those who knew him, is unmistakable. He died bravely, doing what he loved, and what he believed in.”
The high school and college track star left Indiana University to pursue his dream, serving multiple deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.
Keating and his fiancée eloped just before his last deployment, but were planning a wedding ceremony in November when he was expected to arrive home.