Navy serviceman laid to rest in emotional service


ST. CHARLES, Mo. – Service members and family members paid their respects Saturday for Hospital Corpsman Third Class Bailey Tucker at Baue Funeral Home Cave Springs in St. Charles.  

“He wanted to save people he wanted to be the person that jumped out of that helicopter and rescued people and do the work that he was doing so that others could live,” Tucker’s cousin Kelly Karavousanos said.

Tucker died tragically in a helicopter crash Aug. 31 outside of San Diego during a routine flight operation. 

Tuckers body was returned to St. Louis Lambert International Airport Friday, Oct. 22, then escorted to Baue Funeral Home Cave Springs.  

California is where one sailor met Tucker nearly two years ago. 

“I got to San Diego, and he was one of the first people I hung out with. We went skateboarding with him and we just hung out more and more,” Aviation Structural Mechanic Third Class Tanner said.  

He said he was emotional making the trip, but nothing would stop him from making it to Saturday’s service.  

“We made every effort to get down here. Tucker was more than a brother to us; I mean we did everything with that man,” Tanner said.  

Hospital Corpsman Troy Ray was stationed in Texas, Florida, and California with Tucker and looked up to him.

Like his fellow sailor,  Ray said paying his respect for Tucker was necessary.  

“It’s a very rewarding and family-connected life in the Navy, and we need to be there for each other to pick each other up when we’re all down,” Ray said.  

Karavousanos said the family is thankful to have him with them after the heartbreaking incident. 

“The Navy and all of the people that went into the rescue operation put their lives on the line to bring him back to his Mom, and for him to be with her I think there is peace in that,” Karavousanos said. 

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