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Community comes together to honor fallen Marine with parade

Due to coronavirus restrictions on large gatherings, his family couldn't honor the fallen Marine's life with a formal funeral or memorial.

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (KNBC) - The community of Simi Valley rallied together to do a drive-by parade past the house of a family whose son was killed in Iraq.

Marine Gunnery Sergeant Diego Pongo was killed in action March 8.

Due to coronavirus restrictions on large gatherings, his family couldn't honor his life with a formal funeral or memorial.

After Diego’s brother Andres and his wife Andrea posted online asking for support from the community, the city showed up in a big way.

Thousands of people drove past the family's home to pay their respects to the fallen hero.

Numerous emergency vehicles cruised by the home to honor Sergeant Pongo's life, too.

Diego's father is extremely thankful for the celebration of life. "Thank you for coming, thank you very much,” he told KNBC. “We miss our son so much."

"People keep reaching out to us showing us their support,” said Andres, “and how much they want to be there for us."

Sergeant Pongo was 34.