By David Spunt
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The family of a fallen U.S. Marine from Gloucester County told Eyewitness News they were surprised, but honored when asked if their son could be featured on the back of a beer can.
Ken and Donna Iannelli of Clarksboro lost their son Ryan in September 2011. He was a helicopter pilot, and his chopper crashed in Helmand Province, Afghanistan on September 28.
“I just had a knock on the door about 3:30 in the afternoon and it was two Marines,” his father Ken told Eyewitness News.
The Iannelli’s said their son wanted to become a U.S. Marine and discovered religion at a young age.
“He made a commitment to serve Jesus,” Donna Iannelli said.
The Iannelli’s were surprised when they took a phone call from a fellow U.S. Marine named Seth Jordan. He owns a company called Dog Tag Brewing based in Bozeman, Montana. Jordan asked if he could tell Ryan’s story on the back of one of his beer cans.
The Iannelli family agreed, and Ryan is now one of several members of the U.S. Military on the back of Jordan’s cans.
“It’s about the fallen heroes,” Jordan told Eyewitness News.
Captain Iannelli’s name is now in seven states including Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Burlington County is the only county that sells Dog Tag in the Philadelphia area, but Jordan said that will soon change.
Proceeds from the beer go to different military charities. The Ianelli’s started a ministry named after their son to help others. They are in the early stages of planning that ministry.
“I always told God I trust you with my son and I do. I know I’ll be with Ryan again,” Donna Iannelli said.