Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery, a wide field between the Pentagon and thousands of headstones from other wars, became the final resting place Thursday for the third Prince William County man killed in combat.
They are among 98 service members killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom — nearly 10 percent of the war’s dead — who are buried at that cemetery.
Army Sgt. Jack Bryant Jr., of Dale City, was laid to rest in a new row of graves Thursday. His plot is only three to the right of Sgt. Brian Medina, a Dale City Marine killed in Fallujah and buried last week.
Bryant — a 23-year-old member of the 3rd Brigade Fire Support Team — was killed by an improvised explosive device in Muqdadiyah, Iraq, when his convoy came under the attack of insurgents last month.
The insurgents launched a rocket-propelled grenade attack immediately after the device detonated.
Bryant made daily trips to bring food and supplies to remote offensive camps, according to his father Jack Bryant Sr.
Section 60 was quiet at 10 a.m. as roughly 50 mourners gathered behind the hearse and a team of soldiers carried Bryant’s casket to his final resting place. Moments later the mourners gathered around Bryant’s grave site, only 15 plots from Army Capt. Humayan S.M. Khan.
Khan, of Bristow, was killed in Baqouba in June.
Sniffles from crying friends and relatives were drowned out when a firing party launched a three-round-volley in honor of Bryant.
Master Sgt. Tammy Leverone played “Taps” on a bugle as an airliner flew low overhead.
Lt. Gen. Larry J. Dodgen, commander of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, presented Bryant’s wife, and high-school sweetheart Kiona, with a flag. Dodgen then presented another to Bryant’s parents, Jack and Linda Bryant.
Dodgen presented Kiona with a bronze star and Purple Heart before taking her arm and escorting her from the burial site at the service’s end.
Bryant was killed two days after returning from a two-week leave, during which he visited Kiona, 22, and the couple’s 2-year-old son, at the family’s home in Germany. They went to Paris and celebrated Thanksgiving early.