A song, military awards, a somber morning for the friends and family of James Carter at Frazer Memorial United Methodist Church. Carter died when his helicopter crashed in Afghanistan. The Army says Carter was shot down during a test flight. Another soldier on board also died.
"How the mighty have fallen. He loved the Word of God and the God of the Word," says pastor Carl Livingston.
Beginning with state Senator Quinton Ross, James Carter's family received the Alabama flag, the Distinguished Service Medal, the Gold Star Banner and the Bronze Star. All this on top of the military awards he had won including the Air Medal with Valor and the National Defense Service Medal.
Carter was only a month away from coming back home for a break.
"He died way too young. He loved God and he loved his family," Livingston said.
Carter spent nearly 25 years in the Army and had made tentative plans to retire once his deployment was over. Carter served several tours of duty in Germany, Bosnia, Iraq and his final stop Afghanistan.
The Chief Warrant Officer had just completed a Master's Degree and built his 'dream home' in Tennessee shortly before he died.
Today they buried James Carter. He would have turned 43 next month.