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Funeral arrangements set for fallen soldier

Funeral arrangements have been set for Sgt. Lerando Brown, who was killed in the line of duty in Balad, Iraq on March 14.

Brown, a member of the 288th Sapper Company based out of Houston, Miss., was on his first tour of duty. He is the second Pearl River County soldier to be killed during deployment to Iraq.

Sgt. Carley Davis, information officer for the Poplarville Company B 155th, said in a phone interview Saturday that services for Brown will be held at Hart’s Chapel Church, 340 DuPont Harts Chapel Road. Poplarville on Wednesday, March 26. Visitation will be held from 10 a.m. until noon, with funeral services immediately following the visitation.

“After the service, at approximately 2 p.m., the procession will leave from Hart’s Chapel and go through Poplarville by the National Guard Armory. Once the procession passes the armory, it will continue east along Highway 26 through Poplarville and to Wiggins, where it will take Highway 49 South to the Biloxi National Cemetery,” Davis said.

Governor Haley Barbour called Brown’s death a “great loss for the citizens of Mississippi,” in a press release issued on March 19.

In the same release, Maj. Gen. Harold Cross, former adjutant general of Mississippi, said “We are deeply saddened by the loss of another one of our Soldiers in Iraq. We just ask the public to continue to pray for the Brown family and for our forces and their families supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.”

Brown was one of 95 members of the 288th who were mobilized in June, 2007 and who arrived in Iraq in Sept. 2007. The soldiers were conduction engineer support operations.

Brown’s body will be returned to Gulfport on Tuesday, and will continue from there to Owens-Ramsey Funeral Home in Wiggins, where it will remain until service on Wednesday.