People stopped by St. Francis of Assisi church in La Quinta Friday following a procession to pay their respects – another emotional memorial for fallen Marine Cpl. Hunter Lopez.
A viewing was open to the public Friday afternoon. Lopez's casket with an American flag draped over was displayed just below the church's alter. Two marines stood watch over him.
Gaby Morales brought her two daughters. They took part in the procession Friday morning at Amelia Earhart, Lopez's childhood elementary school.
"They came home just talking about Hunter Lopez like they knew him, and they asked if we could come by," Morales said. "They wanted to just pray for Hunter."
Local Congressman Raul Ruiz brought his family inside, hoping to teach his two young girls about memorializing the fallen, and the honor of service and sacrifice for our country.
"It's a lesson that I hope they will take forever and really reflect on this for the rest of their lives," Ruiz said.
Kayla Adkins said Lopez was a year older than her at La Quinta High School. She came to mourn as well.
"It just hits home when someone from home is out there doing good for our community and for the country," Adkins said. "It's just sad to know someone so close to your age has passed away."
A memorial service at the Palm Springs Convention Center and final procession to the burial at Riverside National Cemetery will be held Saturday at 11 a.m.