By Alex DeMetrick

SYKESVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — A sad farewell to a young Army pilot killed earlier this month in Afghanistan.

Alex DeMetrick reports Captain Sara Knutson Cullen was brought home to Carroll County.

Under a spring snow, a sad homecoming for Captain Sara Knutson Cullen, killed two weeks ago in Kandahar Province in Afghanistan at the age of 27.

“She was amazing. Perfect. One of a kind. She was stronger than any person in 27 years should ever be. She helped make each of us the people we are today,” said Cullen’s friend, Katie Owens.

For these friends, it was a connection that stretched from the fourth grade in Eldersburg to Sara’s wedding to Chris Cullen, a former Army pilot, in 2012 to today.

“She didn’t just dream big, she succeeded. She made those dreams happen,” said Ashley Rainey.

Those dreams carried her through the rigors of West Point to the demands of flying Blackhawk helicopters. The crash that claimed her life also took three others.

“She didn’t talk much about it when we got together but she said, `I’m a Blackhawk pilot and that’s pretty cool.’ She loved what she did,” said Amanda Eakle.

“And we’re going to carry all the words of wisdom, all the encouraging things she said to us. She was a great, amazing person,” said Lindsay Holbit.

Knutson Cullen will be buried with full honors at Arlington National Cemetery.

Knutson’s family released this statement on Monday:

“The Knutson and Cullen family would like to express their appreciation and gratitude for the support of the community and the Army during this most difficult time.   The outpouring and love and support in helping to honor the life of Sara as well as the other soldiers who lost their life in Kandahar on March 11th is greatly appreciated by our family.

“Sara was kind, considerate, self-confident and smart.  She had a burning desire to experience and enjoy all that life had to offer.  Sara’s face was like an artist’s canvas.  From the smile that drew you into easy conversation to the look that let you know that she disagreed with you on some point or other.

“Sara was a loving wife, daughter, sister and aunt.  She had a deep love for her country and was proud to serve.”


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