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Strong support continues to honor Illinois fallen soldier

This was the fifth annual remembrance since the U.S. Army national guardsman was found dead in Galesburg back in 2018.

ROCHELLE, Ill. — Community members poured out their hearts over the weekend for the family of a fallen U.S. Army national guardsman.

A 5K memorial was held Sunday in Tyler Smith's hometown of Rochelle. 

The 23-year-old was found dead in Galesburg five years ago.

RELATED: Timeline of events: The investigation of Tyler Smith's death remains ongoing

The annual run/walk and afterparty raises money to give back to the community.

"We give grants out to nonprofits," mother Sandy Halsne said. "We've given out ten scholarships. Anything military, police related."

Credit: WQAD
Fundraiser at VFW hall in Rochelle.

His parents said the support provides a bit of relief as they continue pushing for justice.

"It just warms our heart to have that support and know that people still care and people are still out there fighting with us," mother Halsne said. 

Credit: WQAD
Fundraiser at VFW hall in Rochelle.

Tyler is a Western Illinois University graduate who majored in Law Enforcement and Justice Administration.

RELATED: 'I will never give up on him' l Remembering Tyler Smith: 3 years later

The death investigation is ongoing by Illinois State Police. A reward fund is at around $100,000 for any leads that solves the case. Anyone with any information on the case is asked to contact Illinois State Police Special Agent Luke Kuehl at 815-632-4010.


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