WEST JEFFERSON, Ohio (WCMH) – Jacob Drake flew his last flight home Tuesday afternoon. He was missing at sea for several weeks. It was a moment in time that was especially hard on Drake’s family and friends. Drake’s fiance’s grandmother, Brenda Coffey, said her granddaughter is struggling.
“You just don’t know how sad it is and how heart-wrenching it is,” said Coffey.
Coffey said she and her granddaughter last saw Drake in December.
“She loved him and she’s got a lot of family and friends to support her,” said Coffey.
Drake was a petty officer aboard the U.S.S John Mccain when it was struck by a tanker near Singapore. He was one of 10 sailors killed in the accident three weeks ago. Police officers from all over Central Ohio, along with members of the volunteer Ohio Patriot Guard, escorted him to the funeral home in West Jefferson. Ray Schwabe didn’t let the pouring rain stop him from revving up his motorcycle.
“He is a true American hero. He gave his life defending our country. There’s no greater honor,” said Schwabe.
As this flag sits at half-staff, Drake’s aunt Virginia Boyerziech said reality about what happened to her nephew is sitting in but his family is getting by.
“One day at a time and know that he’s in a better place. That was what his life was and what he wanted to,” said Boyerziech.