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Comedian to host benefit to help bury vet whose ashes were found in storage

Former U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Bobby Henline talks to members of Team Offutt during a Special Airman’s Call May 24 inside the Bennie Davis Maintenance Facility at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. Henline gave both a moving story of his injuries and healing process before transitioning into his stand-up comedic act. (U.S. Air Force photo by Josh Plueger)

Comedian Bobby Henline will appear in Fayetteville on Friday night to help an Army veteran be escorted and properly buried at his final resting place.

Henline is a former Army staff sergeant with the 82nd Airborne Division who is a war veteran, burn survivor and motivational speaker.

He will be participating in a meet and greet from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday and a show from 8 to 9 p.m. at Paul’s Place, 719 Starling St., according to his Instagram page.

Tickets for the meet and greet are $20 and will include food provided by Kickback Jack’s, and tickets for the comedy show are $25.

The benefit will help cover costs to take Cpl. James William Gartland “to his final resting place” in Pennsylvania, said Stacey Buckner, an organizer with the event.

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Buckner, who works with veterans through her Off-Road Outreach homeless veterans nonprofit organization, recently received a call from a woman in South Carolina who had purchased a storage unit and found Gartland’s cremated remains.

Along with his remains are a brief biography stating that he was born May 1, 1948, joined the Army after graduating from high school in 1966 and died Aug. 21, 2016.

Buckner tracked down Gartland’s brother in Pennsylvania, who was under the impression that his brother had been buried after his death and did not know how his cremated remains ended up in a storage unit.

That is why Buckner is working with local organizations to ensure Gartland is properly escorted back to his home state and has a proper burial.

The Combat Veterans Motorcycle Club and Patriot Guard will escort Gartland from North Carolina through Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, Buckner said.

The ride is scheduled to start at 8 a.m. Oct. 12 at Fort Bragg Harley Davidson.

Buckner said Friday’s benefit will help cover costs of the ride and for Gartland’s burial.

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© 2019 The Fayetteville Observer