WISCASSET – U.S. and state flags were flown at half staff Tuesday to mark the funeral of a soldier who was killed in Afghanistan earlier this month.

The service for Pfc. Andrew Small, 19, of Wiscasset, was being held at the community center in his hometown.

News photographers were kept away from the center, and an Associated Press reporter approaching the hall was told to leave.

Among dignitaries scheduled to attend was Gov. John Baldacci.

Small was killed when his convoy was attacked with rocket-propelled grenades and machine guns in the northeastern province of Nuristan. Family members said he died while trying to help his squad leader, who had been shot.

Three soldiers died in the Aug. 11 incident, and several others were injured.

Killed along with Small were Army Spc. Rogelio Garza Jr., 26, of Corpus Christi, Texas, and Army Pfc. James White Jr., 19, of Huber Heights, Ohio, the military said.

The soldiers were members of the First Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, Third Brigade Combat Team, of the 10th Mountain Division based at Fort Drum, N.Y.

According to state officials, the Maine Army Guard and the Air Guard have more than 561 soldiers and airmen mobilized or deployed as part of military action in Afghanistan and Iraq.

More than 1,700 soldiers from the Maine Army Guard and over 750 airmen and women from the Maine Air Guard have been given related assignments since September 11, 2001, officials said.

As mourners arrived for the Small service Tuesday, motorcycles filled a portion of the parking lot and an irregular color guard lined the sidewalk outside the hall.

On Sunday, Baldacci joined other officials at a Freedom Salute ceremony at the Augusta Civic Center for 129 members of the 152nd Maintenance Company, five soldiers from the Afghanistan National Army Mission and seven members of the Task Force Sabre.



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