A hearse bearing the remains of U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Rylee McCollum passes through Jackson on Friday, Sept. 10, 2021. The Marine died at the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Aug. 26, 2021. (Angus M. Thuermer, Jr./WyoFile)

Thousands of mourners lined blocks and blocks of downtown Jackson on Friday to honor Lance Cpl. Rylee McCollum as a hearse carried the Marine’s remains home.

A procession of emergency vehicles and motorcycles escorted the victim of an ISIS suicide bomber in Afghanistan to a mortuary. The Jackson Town Square was virtually silent at times as the procession passed.

A band played the National Anthem and the Marines’ Hymn. The crowd chanted “USA! USA!” before and after the procession passed.

One policewoman estimated 7,000 to 10,000 people turned out. Wyoming’s federal delegation — U.S. Sens. John Barrasso and Cynthia Lummis and U.S. Rep. Liz Cheney — and Gov. Mark Gordon paid their respects at the Jackson Hole Airport where McCollum’s casket arrived before the procession.

McCollum, who graduated from high school in Jackson in 2019, died Aug. 26, 2021.

Angus M. Thuermer Jr. is the natural resources reporter for WyoFile. He is a veteran Wyoming reporter and editor with more than 35 years experience in Wyoming. Contact him at angus@wyofile.com or (307)...

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  1. A nice small-town tribute.

    And quite the moment in Jackson where their greatest life concern is usually over how big their new climbing gym is.

    Anyone know who arranged for all the motorcycles?

  2. I can’t thank Jackson and the other Wyomingites who honored Rylee enough. Seldom do the American people put everything aside for such a wonderful turnout. In addition, Tunnels to Towers Foundation has announced they will be building a new house for Gigi and their baby; and, it appears GoFund Me will exceed a million dollars for Gigi and their baby – over 10,000 Americans contributed. As a twice wounded disabled vet I thank you from the depths of my heart. And please, say a prayer for Rylee and his family. Lee