Father: God directed American to fight Islamic State group

Necati Yuzbasioglu, of Manville, R.I., background left, talks with Ben Douthwaite, of Delaware, beside pictures of Keith Broomfield, foreground right, and Kurdish leader Abdullah Ocalan outside Grace Baptist Church in Hudson, Mass., Wednesday, June 17, 2015, before the funeral service for Broomfield. Broomfield was killed in Syria while fighting the Islamic State group. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

HUDSON, Mass. (AP) — The father of the first American believed to have been killed fighting the Islamic State group says his son’s path “wasn’t very straight” but that God straightened it and guided him to Syria.

Keith Broomfield, a U.S. citizen who had no military training, died fighting alongside Kurdish forces. Friends and family gathered Wednesday at Grace Baptist Church in Hudson for his funeral before a private burial.

Friends described the 36-year-old Broomfield as a car and motorcycle enthusiast who embraced his passions headlong. Broomfield’s father said his son was injured in a motorcycle accident but that God took away the pain and righted Keith’s path.

Funeral organizers expect more than 500 people. A group of American Kurds arrived to show support for Broomfield, who was raised in Bolton and lived in Westminster.
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