There’s a calm before the storm.
The people of Sebree, Kentucky usually won’t prepare like this.
“Oh yeah I’ll light ‘em up, that’s what he’d want me to do,” Ben Payne says with a smile. He’s talking about his diesel-fed engine on board a monster pick-up truck.
Friends and family honor Aaron Jennings in a unique way for his last ride. He’s the young man killed last weekend at The Pony nightclub in Evansville.
Friday, he was laid to rest with a trail of trucks following close behind.
Police have the man they say is responsible for the senseless crime, but as his family and friends are feeling, nothing will bring Aaron back.
“He was not just my friend, he was my best friend,” Payne says, now choking back tears. “I loved him like a brother.”
The 21-year-old was shot and killed outside The Pony. Police say he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Investigators say Clarence Miller, 33, is charged with Aaron’s murder. He was arrested in Chicago earlier this week and still awaiting his return to Evansville.
“He was my ride or die,” says Aaron’s uncle, Gary Buchanan. “Till the end, no matter what.”
Aaron loved his truck; he had a GMC 1500. His friends love trucks too. While Aaron can’t be here for what’s about to happen, his friends won’t let him go alone.
Some make their journey home a little quieter. Not today, and not for Aaron.
“We’d stop at a stoplight he’d be like, ‘light ‘em up! Blow black smoke!’” Payne says, “That’s what he would want to do.”
And that’s exactly what they do.
A line of trucks lead him to his final resting place, engines roaring, and smoke billowing. A testament of just how much he was loved.
Payne says they saved the best ride for last.
“I will think about him every day of my life.”