Hundreds of mourners attend funeral for homeless veteran
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EVANSVILLE, Wyo. — Hundreds of people gathered at the Wyoming Veterans Cemetery on Tuesday for the funeral of a homeless U.S. Navy veteran that most of them had never met.
It was standing room only at the chapel in Evansville for the funeral of Stephen Carl Reiman, the Casper Star-Tribune (bit.ly/2gDaNRa) reported.
Reiman, 63, arrived in Sheridan on Nov. 8 after a three-day bus ride from a Southern California community for homeless veterans. A few days later he fell ill at a motel and was eventually taken to Wyoming Medical Center in Casper, where he died on Nov. 17, Natrona County Coroner Connie Jacobson has said.
Nobody visited Reiman in the hospital but his sister said nurses there assured her they were with him when he died and he didn't suffer.
"That was so important to me, being a nurse myself. He was remembered even though he was isolated and we had lost touch with him for so long," Diane Reiman told K2 Radio (http://bit.ly/2guRmqW).
"He was cared for in a very special way by a lot of special people."
Jacobson initially had difficulty finding any family and after three days said she hoped people from the community would attend Reiman's funeral to mark his passing.
"One of the reasons I did this was to raise community awareness that we have homeless vets in our own communities," Jacobson said. "They deserve the same recognition and
After a week of searching, Jacobson located Reiman's sister, who said she hadn't heard from her brother in at least two years. Diane Reiman said she didn't know why he had come to Wyoming, but said he worked as a firefighter in Casper for a few years in the late 1970s or early 1980s and enjoyed his time in the state.
She received the flag that had been on her brothers' casket.
Reiman served in the Navy from 1971 to 1975, served with
Jacobson also was able to locate Reiman's daughter-in-law and her daughter — Reiman's only grandchild — but they could not afford to travel to the funeral, she said.
Information from: Casper (Wyo.) Star-Tribune, http://www.trib.com