(Middleville, Mich.) "This was a tragedy for our family," Bobby
Rousch said a few days after his brother Nick, an Army corporal, was buried
with full military honors in Mount Hope Cemetery in Middleville. Nick was
killed Aug. 16 near Herat, Afghanistan, when the Humvee he was in was
overturned by a roadside bomb.
"But there are some amazing things happening because of it," Bobby went on. He
is an '07 Cornerstone grad and former member of the Golden Eagles golf team.
have had calls from people all over the country that saw the funeral, and we
are getting questions about our faith and how God has helped us through these
difficult times. How amazing would that be if our loss helped bring people to
Christ? I've already had people we've met through our ordeal asking questions,
and I think they will follow up and really try to reach out to Jesus."
Thousands of area residents lined the streets when Nick's coffin was moved from
Grand Rapids' Gerald R. Ford Airport to the funeral home in
Middleville."It was pretty amazing," Bobby said. "One thing I will never
forget is looking up to where the work is progressing on the new roof at the
airport, and here were groups of construction workers standing near the edge
with their hats off and their hands over their hearts.
"There were thousands of people along the route, kids and adults, many with
flags or signs. It seemed as if the whole world had come to a stop and
everybody had come out to remember Nick and honor him for his service and
Friends from First Baptist Church pitched in to make things easier for the
Rousch family. "They made meals for us, got our shirts ironed for the funeral.
We even got a car to drive for the week with air conditioning. We don't have a
large church, maybe 500 people for a Sunday service. The church had hit a
little bump, we were losing families, then this happened, and everybody came
together. It was really good to see that happen."
Faith had always been a big part of Bobby Rousch's life, and he admits that
faith played a large role in getting his family through such a trying
week. "I don't know what we would have done without our faith," he said.
"I remember one night when we were sitting together talking about what we'd
been told by the Army liaison people. At that time they didn't have a lot of
information for us, and we were struggling.
"My grandfather, who is pastor of a small church in Lowell, made the best
point. He said we had to rely on the sovereignty of God. We don't know why this
happened, but we didn't have to know. We just had to rely on God to be faithful
to us. And he has been."
Rousch has a great- uncle who is a Vietnam vet who went through a tremendous
loss when his platoon was ambushed. He was the only one to make it back alive.
When he returned he was harassed at the airport and ridiculed for wearing the
uniform."It has been very traumatic for him for more than 30 years,'
Rousch said. "But he was in the bus with in the procession us coming from the
airport. Afterwards he said it restored his faith in America. It was pretty
cool to hear that from him. It was like a door opened, or a weight had been
lifted off his shoulders after 30 years."
At military funerals, a rifle volley is fired, then Taps is played as a final
salute. "That was so emotional," Rousch said. "It's like it brings
everything to a close, you realize that all of this is real."
Bobby Rousch will continue to rely on his faith through the difficult days
ahead."It won't get any easier," he said. "All I can do is hope that somehow
there are people who are brought to Christ because of what we have had to go