Funeral held for soldier slain in Africa

COOPER CITY, Fla. - The funeral service for the U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa sparked a political spat between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman also honored the three other soldiers who died with him.

Mourners exiting the 90-minute service told reporters that a portrait of Sgt. La David Johnson was joined by photographs of Staff Sgt. Bryan C. Black, 35, of Puyallup, Washington; Staff Sgt. Jeremiah W. Johnson, 39, of Springboro, Ohio; and Staff Sgt. Dustin M. Wright, 29, of Lyons, Georgia. The four died Oct. 4 in Niger when they were attacked by militants tied to the Islamic State.

Mourners said the service at a church in suburban Fort Lauderdale, Florida, also focused on how the 25-year-old Johnson became a locally known bicycle trick rider, a loving husband and doting father before entering the Army in 2014 and becoming a member of the Special Forces.

© 2017 Associated Press


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