"They all sign up and sign a blank check and says up to and including my life," said Nigel Heaton, ride captain with the Patriot Guard.
The route is unfamiliar for the roughly 100 Patriot Guard riders who escorted PFC Theodore Glende's body from the Rochester Airport to a funeral home in Henrietta.
For Patriot Guard Ride Captain Nigel Heaton the fallen soldier homecomings have been become routine.
"I have lost count," said Heaton.
Along the roadside, flags flew as the bikers drove by.
"It's just too soon, such a short life," said Stewart Alexander, a cousin.
Stewart and Audrey Alexander stood clasping an American flag, waiting for the 23-year old PFC's hearse to arrive.
To them, he is not just another soldier.
"I kind of expected it in the future, if it ever were to happen but not after he got married and a month over there," said Audrey Alexander, a cousin.
They are cousins.
"Our heart is just torn from us," said Stewart Alexander. "We all think of him as a hero."
"To support him, to let him know that we are here, no matter what," said Audrey.
They said the man they called "Matt" was someone who loved to tell stories and make others laugh.
They said he never judged others.
When enemy fire hit his unit, he was helping a wounded soldier in his group, his family said.
He helped save five lives.
"He sacrificed his own to save his comrades and that's who he was, he was putting everyone else first above him, that's how he was," said Stewart.
Glende married his wife, Alexandra this spring. His cousins said she had just graduated from nursing school.
This was not the homecoming anyone had expected.
"She's been devastated," said Stewart.
"Allie will always be with us always," said Audrey.
But today's support was a proper homecoming for a man who served with honor.
"I am just proud of him. It's about Matt, his dad says it's about Matt ," said Alexander.
Funeral for Glende is at the Interfaith Chapel at the University of Rochester at 1pm on Saturday.