Sunday, July 01, 2007

Daniel Riordan laid to rest

About 700 mourners of Army 1st Lt. Daniel P. Riordan packed into St. Catherine Laboure Catholic Church in Sappington on Saturday, one week after the soldier from Sunset Hills was killed in Iraq.

Boy Scouts hoisting American flags and Knights of Columbus from Missouri and Illinois stood at attention as a six-member honor guard from the Army Corps of Engineers carried Riordan's casket into the church about 10 a.m.

After the ceremony, more than 100 Patriot Guard Riders led the procession to Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery. Residents lined parts of the procession route.

"You have to stop what you're doing and show your respect," said Joellen Braun, who stood along Lindbergh Boulevard with her neighbor, brother and two nephews. "Take a moment. He gave a life."

Riordan's twin brother, Nick, and his father, Rick, gave eulogies.

The family released a statement Saturday that read, in part: "The outpouring of love has been overwhelming. Everyone has shared such wonderful memories they have of Danny."

Family members and close friends gathered after the funeral for a Texas-style barbecue in Riordan's honor.

Born in Forth Worth, Texas, Riordan, 24, graduated from Vianney High School in 2001 and from Southeast Missouri State University in Cape Girardeau in 2005.

A roadside bomb killed Riordan, who had been in Iraq since October, and three of his men in Taji, about 20 miles north of Baghdad.

Ed Barron of Oakville, an assistant scoutmaster with local Boy Scout Troop 662, said that Riordan, who grew up participating in Boy Scouts, had often attended campouts to help lead the boys. The troop was at Saturday's funeral "to show respect," Barron said.

From the Post Dispatch

Related Link:
Daniel P. Riordan dies 'of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle'