by Kate E. MacLean
An army private raised in Somerville served in the funeral ceremonies for former president Ronald W. Reagan June 7-11.
“This was my first major event, as far as funerals go. We were working twenty-hour shifts, practicing to make sure that we didn’t get it wrong,” said Pfc. Justin R. Ryan, 18.
Ryan is part of the Military District of Washington Engineer Company based out of Fort Belvoir, Va. Close proximity to Washington, D.C., Ryan said, allows the company to lend support to the government for events like state funerals, for which they are specially trained.
Reagan’s death on June 5 set in motion a plan involving countless military members from all of the armed forces, according to an American Forces statement.