Sgt. La David Johnson, were laid to rest on Saturday morning with over 1,200 mourners in attendance at the service.
Johnson died on Oct. 4 in Niger along with Staff Sgt. Bryan C. Black, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah W. Johnson and Staff Sgt. Dustin M. Wright, when they were attacked by militants tied to the Islamic State.
According to the Associate Press, La David Johnson’s pregnant widow, Myeshia, and her two young children and family, dressed in white for the service that was held at the Christ the Rock Community Church in suburban Fort Lauderdale.
After the service ended, Johnson’s sister, Angela Ghent, said that “it don’t feel real” that her brother was killed.
“It hasn’t hit me yet, I haven’t had time to grieve,” Ghent told the AP.
Given that the President has shown very little compassion for the fallen soldier, it’s not surprising that he did not attend the service—he was in Virginia golfing. However, Rep. Frederica Wilson was there to support the family and said a few words about Johnson, a young man she had the pleasure of knowing since he was a child.
When Johnson was younger, his parents enrolled him in the 5,000 Role Models of Excellence Project, an initiative that Wilson started back in 1993 that pairs African-American boys with mentors who prepare them for college, vocational school or the military.
“Johnson died a hero,” Wilson recently told MNBC.
As we previously reported, Johnson’s death sparked a national debate when it was revealed that President Trump told Myeshia over the phone that her dead husband “ .” The conversation, which was overheard on speakerphone by Congresswoman Wilson, became public when reporters asked Wilson what had Trump said to Johnson’s grieving widow.
Since then, the President and his administration have called Wilson a liar, accused of her trying to politicize Johnson’s tragic death and blasted her for sharing a private conversation with the public. Standing strong, Wilson has not wavered from her account of the encounter, which has been confirmed by Johnson’s aunt, who raised Johnson after his mother died when he was five-years-old.
“President Trump did disrespect my son and my daughter and also me and my husband,” Cowanda Jones-Johnson told The Washington Post on Wednesday.
Jones-Johnson declined to go into exact details, but told the newspaper that Wilson’s account of the conversation was accurate.
If there is any silver lining to this story it’s that in the past week, an online fundraiser has raised more than $600,000 to pay for the Johnson children’s education. In the lawmakers have since on the attack and some members of Congress have called for their own investigation into the death of Johnson and his colleagueswrites CBS News,