Soldier who died after tours in war zones is laid to rest in NC with full military honors

North Carolina news

TRYON, N.C. (WSPA) – On Saturday, family and friends laid to rest a soldier in the U.S Army.

Dozens of people filled the pews of McFarland Funeral Chapel in Tryon to honor Sgt. Roderick Lynn Wilkins.

Wilkins was laid to rest with full military honors.

“I probably can’t ever truly get over this,” said one family member.

The Spartanburg, South Carolina native grew up in Pea Ridge, North Carolina at the coast.

Wilkins graduated from Polk County High School in North Carolina in 2002. After graduation, Wilkins joined the Army and served four tours in Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan.

At the end of last month, he passed away in the Netherlands while serving on active duty.

“I think we can all admit that Roderick had probably one of the most beautiful smiles we’ve ever seen. He was always lit up. He has a laugh and an energy that really and truly could brighten a dark room,” said a childhood friend during the service.

“He’d be the life of the party. That smile he had would light a room up to change everything about a situation,” a friend said during the funeral.

Family members say above all Wilkins loved his wife Sherry and two daughters Shalyn and Aslyn.

“The love he had for his daughters is beyond compare and he will continue to live in their hearts for eternity,” Wilkins’ obituary said.

Full military honors were conducted by a U.S. Army squad from Fort Jackson.

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