September 4, 2013
An Orange County soldier was laid to rest Tuesday, but not before hundreds gathered to remember him.
Friends, family and fellow servicemen and women filled the old Locust Grove Middle School gym for Master Sergeant George Bannar's funeral.
The 37-year-old was killed in enemy fire in Afghanistan on August 20. It was his fifth deployment to the country.
Those inside say the mood was powerful and solemn as many of Bannar's brothers in arms shared stories about his exploits and what a wonderful person he was.
"All the individuals in army uniform were very powerful and you can see combat infantryman badge, many medals, and some of those fellas had tears in their eyes. These are tough, tough soldiers and they were very emotional," said veteran Dick Bradie.
But there were some laughs as friends told stories about the man they described as a jokester, unpredictable and always smiling.
Following the service, a long funeral procession made its way to Culpeper National Cemetery for Bannar's burial.