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Wentzville brewery releases beer and unveils tribute to honor fallen Marine

The Friendship Brewing Company is honoring Wentzville Marine Lance Corporal Jared Schmitz with a memorial statue tribute and a limited-edition beer can.

WENTZVILLE, Mo. — Fallen Wentzville Marine Lance Corporal Jared Schmitz is being remembered by the Friendship Brewing Company with a memorial statue tribute and limited-edition beer, which will contribute to his memorial fund.

Schmitz was one of 13 U.S. service members killed in a suicide bombing at the Kabul airport in Afghanistan on Aug. 26. He was among a group of Marines sent back to Afghanistan to assist with evacuation efforts.

A tribute to the fallen Marine now stands outside a business in his hometown. This week, Friendship Brewing Company unveiled a granite statue, plaque and bench under a new flag pole in his honor. The tribute was funded by donations from Wentzville community members and companies.

The brewery also debuted a new beer. The commemorative 16 oz. cans of a light blonde ale cost $10 with 100% of the proceeds going to the Lance Corporal Jared Schmitz Memorial Fund, which was established by the Schmitz family.

The cans were donated by DigiCan Printing, the grain was donated by Bono Burns Distributing and Friendship Brewing Company provided the brewing and beer.

"Our intent, as ‘old town’ Wentzville folks is to pay tribute to Jared and his family both now and eternally, and to appreciate his great sacrifice and those of all fallen soldiers, as a community," Friendship Brewing Company wrote in a Facebook post.

Schmitz, 20, grew up in St. Charles County and was a 2019 graduate of Fort Zumwalt South. His father told 5 On Your Side his son’s interest in the military started in high school, and he trained before he even was a recruit.

Schmitz was laid to rest in September at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery.