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Tentative date for services set for Airman

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By JENNIFER HORTON
The Wilson Post

Services are tentatively scheduled for 1 p.m., Saturday, May 4, at First Baptist Church, Lebanon for a local man serving in the military overseas who died in a swimming accident in an off-base pool in Gunsan, South Korea.

1st Lt. Joshua Hovies died Friday, April 19, according to a news release from the United States Air Forces 8th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Office.

The news release noted that Hovies cause of death was still under investigation and that additional information would be released as it became available.

Hovies graduated in December 2010 from Auburn University in Auburn, Ala., where he attended as the recipient of a scholarship from the ROTC. Upon his graduation, he was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force and was assigned to Incirlik Air Base, Turkey.

He was later assigned to Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea, where he was training to apply to the Air Forces elite Special Forces corps. He was doing long distance underwater exercises, his mother, Alicia Hovies said, when he passed out. CPR (cardio-pulmonary resuscitation) was applied as Joshua was rushed to the hospital. He was pronounced dead on arrival.

His remains are expected to be returned to the airport in Nashville in the next few days and will then be brought to Lebanon via military escort. Hovies funeral will be conducted with full military honors and he is to receive a 21-gun salute. Wilson County Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

We are extremely saddened by the loss of one of our finest young officers, said Col. Douglas Nikolai, 8th Fighter Wing vice commander. Our thoughts and prayers are with Lt. Hovies family and close friends.

Family friend Pierce Dodson said the Hovies family attends First Baptist Church, Lebanon. He remembered Hovies, who was 26, attended a Bible study he conducted and said he was the kind of person who makes a pretty deep impression. He was a fine young man.

Hovies and his brother, Benjamin, were featured in an article that was published in The Wilson Post on March 9, 2011. Benjamin at the time was attending the United States Merchant Marine Academy in Kings Point, N.Y., and was to graduate in June 2011 with a commission in the U.S. Marine Corps.

1st Lt. Joshua Hovies was born in Bellingham, Wash., on Oct. 19, 1987. The first 13 years of his life were spent in Thailand where his parents served as missionaries.

Lt. Hovies was home schooled, active in political and current events. He earned his Eagle Scout award serving in troop 302. He also volunteered in the campaigns of numerous political races.

Lt. Hovies is survived by his parents, Tom and Alicia Hovies of Lebanon; his sister Mary Beth (Mrs. Colin) Kappel of Murfreesboro; his brother 2nd Lt. Benjamin Hovies USMC (and wife Savanna); his grandparents, Al and Nancy Kent; and relatives Tom and Teresa Oduor, Joy, Job, Josiah and Joanna and the Dennis and Janet Beam family of Adams, Tenn. He was preceded in death by grandparents, Floyd and Dorothy Jones.

This story was first reported Monday, April 22, at www.wilsonpost.com.

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