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LEAVENWORTH, Kan. — Family and friends of beloved WWII Veteran Jerry Ingram got to say their final goodbyes to the marine.

Ingram is remembered for his service to the country.

He lied about his age to join the marines following the attack on Pearl Harbor.

“When the news came, it was quite, you know, it was hard, but I know where Jerry sat and I know he’s finally at peace and he’s reunited with his brothers that he served in arms and combat with. I know he’s at peace and that’s all that really matters,” said Friends in Service of Heroes Founder Paul Chapa.

He was dearly loved by his friends and family.

“He was a great friend and he will be dearly missed,” said WWII Veteran Max Deweese.

He was given a hero’s farewell by singing his favorite tune one last time, The Marine’s Hymn, along with a 21 gun salute.

A salute to who some say is a true American hero.

When Ingram was 17, he served as a tank commander on Iwo Jima with the fourth marine division. He was the sole survivor of the 36-man tank unit deployed on the island.

“He was devoted to the core, loved it. He’s just a nice friend to have, a man that would probably do anything for you if he could,” DeWeese said.

Ingram not only survived Iwo Jima, but he also survived the Hilton Hotel fire in Las Vegas about 40 years ago. He had been trapped in an elevator and managed to crawl out.

“Resiliency was just, you know, his middle name, it really was but, you know, through everything that he went through, all the hardships, all the pain and agony, he always had a kind word for a stranger. He always had something positive to say, he never ever let his injuries and the pain slow him down,” Chapa said.

While Ingram is gone, his memory, humor and service to the country will never be forgotten.

“Mr. Jerry Ingram. What an incredible man he was. You know, just someone I really admired. You know, one of our nation’s defenders. They really don’t make them like Jerry anymore, but I was really honored to call him a friend,” Chapa said.

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