Arkansas honors 5 year old "Army Man" with heartbreaking farewell

 
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Arkansas honors 5 year old "Army Man" with heartbreaking farewell

Just a very sad story, but sweet at the same time.

In 2015, Oakley was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a cancer that develops from immature nerve cells, according to a GoFundMe page that raised $52,000 for his medical treatment. Oakley spent most of his brief life in and out of hospitals, fighting the disease.
 
The boy was cleared of cancer two years later, after grueling rounds of chemotherapy, surgeries and a stem cell transplant, but then had a relapse.

"Oakley spent most of this life, fighting to live and did it with a smile on his face," the boy's obituary said. "He often talked of being an 'Army Man,' as he called it, when he grew up."
 
Oakley's mom, Shelby Nimmo, posted photos online of her son wearing a Navy SEALs helmet and full camo and holding a toy rifle.
Now, Oakley will be remembered as perhaps Arkansas' youngest colonel.
 
Here's a brief video from KATV in Arkansas where the family asked real Army Men and other service members to attend his funeral:
 

And turn out they did, as THV11 reports:

And the Arkansas National Guard promoted him to Colonel posthumously, as I alluded to above:

The Arkansas National Guard has promoted "Army Man" River Oakley Nimmo to the rank of Honorary Colonel, with an effective date of June 20, 2019, in honor of his life and passion for the United States military.

The order promoting River assigned him to the Joint Force Headquarters, Camp Joseph T. Robinson, North Little Rock, Ark., with a duty title of ARMY MAN.

The certificate reads: “That reposing special trust and confidence in the patriotism, valor, fidelity and abilities of River Oakley Nimmo, I do hearby appoint him a Honorary Colonel in the National Guard of Arkansas and of the United States to rank as such from the 20th day of June Two Thousand Nineteen. He is therefore carefully and diligently to discharge the duty of the office to which he is appointed by doing and performing all manners of things thereunto belonging. This commission is to continue in force during the pleasure of the Governor of the State of Arkansas for the time being.”

The certificate is signed by Maj. Gen. Mark H. Berry, the Adjutant General of the State of Arkansas, and Gov. Asa Hutchinson, Commander-in-Chief of the Arkansas National Guard.


On behalf of the men and women of the Arkansas National Guard, rest in peace little buddy. To River's family, you're in our thoughts and prayers.

Rest in Peace Oakley.

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.