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					                                                            2005
                Spec. Dwayne J. McFarlane Jr.




                Hometown: Cass Lake, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 20 years old


                Died: January 9, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 2nd Battalion, 15th Field Artillery Regiment, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.


                Incident: Killed by a makeshift bomb while on patrol in Baghdad.


Army Spc. Dwayne J. McFarlane Jr.
Died January 09, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


20, of Cass Lake, Minn.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 15th Field Artillery Regiment, 10th
Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y. killed Jan. 9 when his dismounted patrol was hit
by an improvised explosive device in Baghdad.

Fort Drum soldier killed by roadside bomb near Baghdad

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — Spc. Dwayne James McFarlane Jr. had seen soldiers die all around him in Iraq,
but he put on a brave face for the aunt and uncle who raised him.

―He knew, he understood the dangers,‖ his uncle, Don Bellanger, said Monday. ―He was aware of
them, but he was always on the upbeat. He‘d say, ‗Don‘t worry about me.‖‘

McFarlane, 20, of Cass Lake, was on foot near Baghdad on Sunday when a roadside bomb went
off, Pentagon spokesman Khalid Walls said. McFarlane, the 11th Minnesota soldier to die in
military operations in Iraq, was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 15th Field Artillery Regiment, 10th
Mountain Division (Light Infantry), at Fort Drum, N.Y.

Walls didn‘t immediately have details of the attack.

―(They) said Dwayne died instantly and didn‘t suffer, which made me feel a little better because I
was very worried about that,‖ Bellanger said. ―I kept thinking back to when he was a little boy and
he would come to me when he was hurt.‖

Bellanger began raising McFarlane when he was 6 years old, after his parents gave him up,
Bellanger said.

He said McFarlane joined the Army to get money for college. ―He liked school,‖ Bellanger said. He
said after the military McFarlane wanted to move to California for college, maybe to learn to work
on computers or design cars. ―That‘s what he was striving for,‖ Bellanger said.

―He never did ... drugs, he was very respectful to all races. He never criticized anybody,‖ Bellanger
said.

McFarlane graduated from Cass Lake-Bena High School in 2002, where he participated in track
and was a member of the 2000-01 basketball team that went to the state tournament. The school
observed a moment of silence Monday for McFarlane and lowered flags to half-staff.

Sue Chase, an English teacher at the school, recalled McFarlane‘s leadership abilities and
described McFarlane as a boy with a ―little bit of mischief in him.‖
Jennifer Voge, a guidance counselor at the school, described McFarlane as a well-liked, humorous
student who had it together.

―Dwayne was somebody who always just did what he was supposed to do,‖ she said.

She didn‘t specifically recall his decision to enter the Army, but did say, ―He wanted to serve his
country.‖

Family, friends honor Cass Lake soldier killed in Iraq

CASS LAKE, Minn. — Spc. Dwayne James McFarlane Jr. was remembered Tuesday as an
honorable warrior during funeral services that contained a mix of military and native Ojibwe
traditions.

―Gigawaabamin ishpiming. We will see you again in heaven. There is no word in our language for
goodbye,‖ said John Rock, who officiated the funeral with the Rev. Harold Eaglebull.

McFarlane, 20, died Jan. 9 when a roadside bomb went off while he was on foot patrol near
Baghdad.

The Cass Lake man was the 11th Minnesota soldier to die in military operations in Iraq. He was
assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 15th Field Artillery Regiment, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry),
at Fort Drum, N.Y.

―The reason why we‘re here is to show our final respect for Spc. Dwayne James Bellanger
McFarlane, and to the family that is here. You can see that love, you can see that trust, that
respect and the caring by his family — his larger family here,‖ Eaglebull said of the hundreds
gathered at the gym at Cass Lake-Bena High School, where McFarlane graduated in 2002.

Eaglebull said McFarlane became a warrior in the modern way by joining the Army and serving his
country.

Cass Lake American Legion 284 Chaplain Dan Gumphrey described McFarlane as ―one of those
men who came back in spirit. He is here. He is among us. He is in our hearts as we sit here to
honor him.‖

Brig. Gen. James L. Terry presented McFarlane‘s aunt and uncle — who raised him since he was
6 years old — and his older brother with medals and keepsake boxes.

Leech Lake Honor Guard Member Kenny Perrault presented the family with a warrior‘s eagle
feather and an eagle feather tipped in red, to symbolize a wounded warrior.

— Associated Press



               Sgt. Michael C. Carlson




               Hometown: St. Paul, Minnesota, U.S.


               Age: 22 years old


               Died: January 24, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


               Unit: Army, 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry, 1st Infantry Division, Vilseck, Germany


               Incident: Killed when their Bradley Fighting Vehicle overturned in a region northeast of Baghdad.


It wasn't just Mike Carlson's 235-pound frame that earned him the nickname "Shrek." His heart was big, too. The
nickname followed him to the Army, where he earned an Army Commendation Medal with Valor for ripping open a
metal door to an Iraqi home and helping them capture a sniper. "He was proving his Shrekness on that one," said his
mother, Merilee. Carlson, 22, of St. Paul, Minn., was among five soldiers who died Jan. 24 when their Bradley Fighting
Vehicle rolled over into a canal. He was based in Vilseck, Germany. Always a big kid, Carlson played organized football
from the age of 8. In high school, he was a standout center and defensive tackle. He had talked about enlisting in the
Army, but his parents encouraged him to try college first. He spent a year at Concordia University, and made the
dean's list, but still wanted to serve his country. "He came and said, 'Mom, I did the year of college, and I want to
go,'" his mother said. He is also survived by his father, Daniel Carson.




Michael Curtis Carlson

Carlson, Michael Curtis - Sergeant, U.S. Army 1st Infantry Division Feb. 14, 1982-Jan. 24, 2005 Sergeant Michael C.
Carlson died on Jan. 24, 2005 in Iraq serving his country and fighting for freedom. Michael Carlson is survived by his
parents, Daniel and Merrilee Carlson (Bedbury); brother Daniel Carlson; grandfather Harry Carlson, the love of his
life, Crystal Beck; other relatives, friends, classmates and fellow soldiers and patriots. He was preceded in death by
his grandparents Myrl & Elsie Bedbury and Nadine Carlson. Michael was born in Spooner, Wisconsin and attended
Webster Elementary until 1990 when the family moved to St. Paul. He attended East Consolidated, Farnsworth,
Cleveland Jr. High, and Cretin-Derham Hall (Class of 2000) and Concordia University. St. Paul. Michael participated in
Boy Scout Troop 42, learned to play football at the L.E.S. program on the East Side of St. Paul, wrestled at Cleveland
and Cretin and played football at Cretin. He also played handbells at Arlington Hills Lutheran Church. Michael chose
to serve his country and enlisted in the U.S. Army on May 19, 2001, as an infantryman. Boot Camp was at Ft. Benning,
Georgia. He was then assigned to the 1st ID, 2-2, A Company at Vilseck Germany. During 2003 his Unit spent 6
months in Kosovo. In February 2004, Michael's Unit was deployed to Iraq where he was attached to the 82nd
Engineering Battalion. The family would enjoy receiving the 'Michael stories' from friends. These may be sent to
sgtmichaelcarlson@gmail.com. Funeral Service 11 AM Saturday at ARLINGTON HILLS LUTHERAN CHURCH, 1115
Greenbrier St., St. Paul. Visitation 2-8PM Friday at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorial preferred to Cretin-
Derham Hall, LES Football Program, Arlington Hills Lutheran Church Latino Ministry or The Freedom Fund. Anderson
Funeral Home 651-776-2761.


             Published in Pioneer Press from February 3 to February 4, 2005




                          Michael Curtis Carlson
                                  Sergeant, United States Army



              NEWS RELEASE from the United States Department of Defense
                                          No. 103-05
                                    IMMEDIATE RELEASE
                                         Jan 31, 2005
 Media Contact: Army Public Affairs - (703) 692-2000 Public/Industry Contact: (703)428-0711
                              DoD Identifies Army Casualties

  The Department of Defense announced today the death of five soldiers who were
   supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. The soldiers died January 24, 2005, in
  Mohammed Sacran, Iraq, when their Bradley Fighting Vehicle overturned. They
   were assigned to the 2d Battalion, 2d Infantry, 1st Infantry Division, Vilseck,
                                       Germany.

                                           Dead are:

          Staff Sergeant Joseph W. Stevens, 26, of Sacramento, California
              Sergeant Michael C. Carlson, 22, of St. Paul, Minnesota
                  Sergeant Javier Marin Jr., 29, of Mission, Texas
              Specialist Viktar V. Yolkin, 24, of Spring Branch, Texas
           Private First Class Jesus A. Leon-Perez, 20, of Houston, Texas

                             This incident is under investigation.

For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703)
                                     692-2000.
                          Posted on Sun, February 06, 2005

                         Soldier, 22, 'lived the life he sought'
                 St. Paulite's life ended fulfilling a childhood dream

                              BY BILL SALISBURY
                            Courtesy of the Pioneer Press

  Hundreds of friends, family members, schoolmates and fellow soldiers packed into
Arlington Hills Lutheran Church on the East Side on Saturday morning to pay their
final respects to Army Sergeant Michael Carlson, the first soldier from St. Paul to be
                              killed in the war in Iraq.

Carlson, 22, who died with four other soldiers January 24, 2005, when their Bradley
ighting Vehicle rolled over into a canal in the town of Mohammed Sacran, Iraq, was
 remembered as a strong, passionate, fun-loving young man whose life ended as he
                          was fulfilling a childhood dream.

In a eulogy for his younger brother, Daniel Carlson said Michael wanted to be "part
  of something greater than himself." He read a paper that his brother wrote while
   attending Cretin-Derham Hall High School in which he dreamed of becoming a
                     "soldier liberating people from oppression."

               "He lived the life that he sought," Daniel Carlson said.

The church was filled to capacity as an Army honor guard wheeled the slain soldier's
 coffin down the center aisle. Many members of the congregation wept as the coffin
                               rolled by. Others saluted.

  At Cretin-Derham Hall, Carlson earned the nickname "Shrek" as a big, affable
defensive tackle on the school's football team, recalled his coach, Richard Kallok. He
played on the Roman Catholic school's 1999 state championship team and also was a
                                 heavyweight wrestler.

 Kallok ticked off a list of traits that distinguished Carlson. "He had a desire to give
the best all the time," whether it was on the wrestling mat, the football field or in art
       class making clay pots and covering himself with dirt from head to toe.

Brimming with enthusiasm, Carlson "always jumped in with both feet," Kallok said.

 He was a courageous and disciplined football player who practiced hard, bounced
     back from mistakes and showed confidence in adversity, the coach said.

 "Mike did what was right, no matter what the cost. He truly walked the walk," he
                                      said.

Carlson won an Army Commendation Medal for valor for ripping open a metal door
on a suspected insurgents' house in Iraq so his comrades could pursue a sniper. But
   he didn't tell his family about the honor. That demonstrated his humility and
                               integrity, Kallok said.

Carlson's former commander, Major Thomas Johnson, said he was a dedicated man
who excelled at his skills, took care of his comrades, believed in their cause and was
  one of the best soldiers he ever commanded. "He's a true hero," Johnson said.

      The Army recognized his heroism by awarding him a Bronze Star Medal
                                 posthumously.

To honor Carlson, Governor Tim Pawlenty ordered flags to be flown at half-staff on
                           state buildings Saturday.

Among those in attendance at the service were St. Paul Mayor Randy Kelly and U.S.
 Rep. Betty McCollum. In addition to church members, many Cretin-Derham Hall
  faculty and students and soldiers in uniform attended. Members of the school's
                 Reserve Officer Training Corps served as ushers.

 The church hand-bell choir, in which Carlson once performed, saluted him with a
                                      hymn.

  Carlson was born February 14, 1982, in Spooner, Wisconsin. He grew up on St.
     Paul's East Side, where he participated in Boy Scouts and youth sports.

    After graduating from Cretin-Derham Hall in 2000, he attended Concordia
    University for one year at his parents' request before enlisting in the Army.

  An infantryman, he served in Vilseck, Germany, and Kosovo before his unit was
deployed to Iraq in February of last year. He was scheduled to leave Iraq this month.

     In addition to Carlson's brother, his parents, Daniel and Merrilee Carlson,
         grandfather Harry Carlson and fiancée Crystal Beck survive him.

 Carlson will be buried Tuesday at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington,
                                       D.C.
                            Posted on Sun, Dec. 18, 2005
                         Like son, mother makes difference
                              By JOE SOUCHERAY

 The Carlsons, Daniel and Merrilee and two sons, Daniel and Michael, moved from
   the East Side of St. Paul to Hastings in the summer of 2004. Michael was not
  available to haul furniture or put the washing machine on his back — which he
might have been capable of — as he was at the time Sergeant Michael Carlson of the
United States Army, serving in Iraq and loving it, the task, the people, the mission.

Carlson, 22, was among four soldiers who died when their Bradley Fighting Vehicle
 rolled over in a canal in the town of Mohammed Sacran. That was January 24 of
 thisyear. He had three weeks left in the country. Carlson became the first soldier
                       from St. Paul to die in the war in Iraq.

During the move from St. Paul to Hastings, there being no Michael around to help,
 his older brother scooped up the stuff in Michael's room, including school papers,
 among them a credo written during Michael's senior year at Cretin-Derham Hall.
The three-page paper was posted by the Wall Street Journal on Memorial Day. It is
                                worth looking for.

In part, the paper read: "I sometimes dream of being a soldier in a war. In this war,
                  I'm helping to liberate people from oppression.''

That was written in the spring of 2000. That was written before September 11, 2001;
      Carlson was at his final inspection at boot camp on September 11, 2001.

                            Where did that come from?

"We don't know,'' Merrilee Carlson said the other day. "This young man truly loved
                                     his country.''

   But in high school he was not even in ROTC, which his school offers. He was a
  football player, a good one, a good student, a hale fellow well met. He was called
"Shrek," for his size and his affability. He was remembered well by his teachers and
                                 coaches and buddies.

              But where did that come from, that abiding call to serve?

   "Plus,'' Merrilee said, "he loved being a grunt. He was uncomfortable being a
            leader. I think it unnerved him when he became a Sergeant.''

  Merrilee Carlson was at her job with National Oilwell Varco, where she is the
engineering administrative services supervisor. National Oilwell Varco has a laying
            on of hands all the way back to American Hoist & Derrick.

              "We design off-shore oil rigs and cranes,'' Merrilee said.

This woman, this mother of the first soldier from St. Paul killed in Iraq, has not been
 getting quite the media attention that has been given to, say, Cindy Sheehan, whose
  theatrical gullibility has been taken advantage of by an obsequious gang of cable
                                 television newshounds.

"Cindy Sheehan has driven me to be vocal,'' Carlson said. "We can't leave this work
 undone in Iraq. We can all argue about how we might have gotten there. But we're
  there and we need to see it through. Michael died while en route to take out what
they had been told was a bomb-making facility. This was during Iraq's first attempt
 at the election. He would have been entirely thrilled to see 80 percent of the eligible
                   voters turn out to vote in the election this week.''

    If not Cindy Sheehan specifically, it has been pessimism in general that has
compelled Merrilee Carlson to speak highly and cheerfully of her son. After all, he
was her son. It is not conceivable to her that there are mothers of dead soldiers who
                     would want the United States to cut and run.

"I suppose we could have taken the beaches at Normandy,'' Merrilee said, "and then
 decided it was too expensive or too difficult to keep going. I wonder what the world
                               would look like today.''

As a Gold Star mother, the mother of a soldier who died in Iraq, Merrilee has joined
     Families United for Our Troops and Their Mission. They have a Web site,
                          www.unitedforourtroops.com.

The other night she showed up on talk radio. She will take care to see that Gold Star
     families interact with Blue Star families, those with soldiers active in Iraq.

 "I cannot let the value of these great young people get discredited,'' Merrilee said.
 "These are just great American kids who believe they are serving their country in
                                the best possible way.''

  Michael Carlson was buried at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, a
long way from Spooner, Wisconsin, where he was born, and the East Side, where he
                                     grew up.

 "Michael always wanted to go to Washington,'' Merrilee said. "In his last letter to
his fiancée he told her that they would go to Washington. He got there. He got there
                   the hard way, but that's where he wanted to be.''

                             Sunday, December 18, 2005:

 The Carlsons, Daniel and Merrilee and two sons, Daniel and Michael, moved from
   the East Side of St. Paul to Hastings in the summer of 2004. Michael was not
  available to haul furniture or put the washing machine on his back — which he
might have been capable of — as he was at the time Sergeant Michael Carlson of the
 United States Army, serving in Iraq and loving it, the task, the people, the mission.

 Carlson, 22, was among four soldiers who died when their Bradley Fighting Vehicle
rolled over in a canal in the town of Mohammed Sacran. That was January 24 of this
 year. He had three weeks left in the country. Carlson became the first soldier from
                            St. Paul to die in the war in Iraq.

During the move from St. Paul to Hastings, there being no Michael around to help,
 his older brother scooped up the stuff in Michael's room, including school papers,
 among them a credo written during Michael's senior year at Cretin-Derham Hall.
The three-page paper was posted by the Wall Street Journal on Memorial Day. It is
                                worth looking for.

In part, the paper read: "I sometimes dream of being a soldier in a war. In this war,
                  I'm helping to liberate people from oppression.''

That was written in the spring of 2000. That was written before September 11, 2001;
         Carlson was at his final inspection t boot camp on Sept. 11, 2001.

                             Where did that come from?

"We don't know,'' Merrilee Carlson said the other day. "This young man truly loved
                                  his country.''

   But in high school he was not even in ROTC, which his school offers. He was a
  football player, a good one, a good student, a hale fellow well met. He was called
"Shrek," for his size and his affability. He was remembered well by his teachers and
                                 coaches and buddies.

              But where did that come from, that abiding call to serve?

   "Plus,'' Merrilee said, "he loved being a grunt. He was uncomfortable being a
            leader. I think it unnerved him when he became a Sergeant.''

  Merrilee Carlson was at her job with National Oilwell Varco, where she is the
engineering administrative services supervisor. National Oilwell Varco has a laying
            on of hands all the way back to American Hoist & Derrick.
             "We design off-shore oil rigs and cranes,'' Merrilee said.

This woman, this mother of the first soldier from St. Paul killed in Iraq, has not been
 getting quite the media attention that has been given to, say, Cindy Sheehan, whose
  theatrical gullibility has been taken advantage of by an obsequious gang of cable
                                 television newshounds.

"Cindy Sheehan has driven me to be vocal,'' Carlson said. "We can't leave this work
 undone in Iraq. We can all argue about how we might have gotten there. But we're
  there and we need to see it through. Michael died while en route to take out what
they had been told was a bomb-making facility. This was during Iraq's first attempt
 at the election. He would have been entirely thrilled to see 80 percent of the eligible
                   voters turn out to vote in the election this week.''
     If not Cindy Sheehan specifically, it has been pessimism in general that has
 compelled Merrilee Carlson to speak highly and cheerfully of her son. After all, he
was her son. It is not conceivable to her that there are mothers of dead soldiers who
                     would want the United States to cut and run.

"I suppose we could have taken the beaches at Normandy,'' Merrilee said, "and then
 decided it was too expensive or too difficult to keep going. I wonder what the world
                               would look like today.''

As a Gold Star mother, the mother of a soldier who died in Iraq, Merrilee has joined
     Families United for Our Troops and Their Mission. They have a Web site,
                          www.unitedforourtroops.com.

The other night she showed up on talk radio. She will take care to see that Gold Star
    families interact with Blue Star families, those with soldiers active in Iraq.

"I cannot let the value of these great young people get discredited,'' Merrilee said.
"These are just great American kids who believe they are serving their country in
                               the best possible way.''

  Michael Carlson was buried at Arlington National Cemetery near Washington, a
long way from Spooner, Wisconsin, where he was born, and the East Side, where he
                                     grew up.

 "Michael always wanted to go to Washington,'' Merrilee said. "In his last letter to
his fiancée he told her that they would go to Washington. He got there. He got there
                   the hard way, but that's where he wanted to be.''




      Michael died with 4 other men, one of which Viktar Yolkin is originally from Belarus Russia.
       Viktar is buried in Germany. He loved the United States and served with pride and honor.
           Mike on the right and Viktar on the left. This is the one time Mike gave up his gun
                                   Christine – so Viktar could hold it.
                                  Photos Courtesy of the Carlson Family

                             CARLSON, MICHAEL CURTIS
                                   SGT US ARMY
                              DATE OF BIRTH: 02/14/1982
                              DATE OF DEATH: 01/24/2005
                           BURIED AT: SECTION 60 SITE 8096
                          ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY




                               Photo Courtesy of Holly, August 2005




             Photos & Valentine's Day Remembrance By Holly February 2006
Posted: 6 February 2005 Updated: 21 August 2005 Updated: 23 December 2005 Updated: 2 January 2006 Updated: 11
                                   February 2006 Updated: 18 February 2006
                                         Updated: 28 September 2009
                  Sgt. 1st Class Mickey E. Zaun




                  Hometown: Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, U.S.


                  Age: 27 years old


                  Died: January 28, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                  Unit: Army, Army Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg, N.C.


                  Incident: Killed in a vehicle accident in Mosul.


                  Mickey Zaun began his Army career just after he turned 18, and loved everything _ and everyone _
                  involved with it. He thrived alongside a strong circle of friends among his fellow soldiers, including his
                  former wife, Melissa Benoit, an Army paratrooper stationed in Germany, friends said. Zaun "seemed
                  comfortable with people of all ages. I never saw anything make him angry," said his former sister-in-
                  law, P.J. Eberhardt. "He treated everybody like they were his brothers and sisters." Zaun, 27, of
                  Brooklyn Park, Minn., died Jan. 28 in Mosul, Iraq, from injuries sustained in a collision between two
                  armored vehicles. He was based at Fort Bragg. "To us he's one of our kids," said Julie Eberhardt, of
                  Jamestown, N.D., Zaun's former mother-in-law. "We're going to love and miss that kid forever." Zaun
                  is survived by his parents, Cheryl and Kenneth Zaun.


Mickey E. Zaun


                      Zaun SFC. Mickey E. Zaun, age 27, of Fayetteville, North Carolina, formerly of the Minneapolis,
                      MN area. Died January 28, 2005 in Iraq. Survived by father, Ken Zaun of Buffalo, MN; mothers,
                      Cheryl Zaun of Eden Prairie, MN and Danne Zaun of Buffalo, MN; sisters, Sabrina Mintz of
                      Bothell, WA and Sharee Koelsch of Eden Prairie, MN; grandmothers, Bonnie Zaun of Hopkins,
                      MN and Sylvia Griffin of Hackensack, MN; great-grandmother, Evangeline Zaun of Mora, MN;
                      aunt, Gayle Lunak of Mpls., MN; uncles, James Griffin Jr. of Hackensack, MN and Doug Zaun of
                      Las Vegas, NV; Man's best friend, Geronimo; fellow soldiers and service members. Private
funeral services were held Friday February 4, 2005 at The Peterson Chapel, Buffalo, MN. Interment with full military
honors were held at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery. The Peterson Chapel Buffalo, Minnesota.




                 Published in Star Tribune on February 6, 2005



                  This is a dedication to one of my best friends and Chemical Dragon, Sergeant First Class Mickey E.
                  Zaun who passed away January 28, 2005. I miss you Mickey!
SFC Mickey E. Zaun, 27, was a Chemical Operations Specialist assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters
Company, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, at Fort Bragg N.C.
Zaun died Jan. 28, 2005, from injuries sustained during a collision between two armored vehicles in the
vicinity of Mosul, Iraq.


     A native of Brooklyn Park, Minn., Zaun entered the Army as a chemical operations specialist on Aug.
10, 1995, just four weeks after his eighteenth birthday.
After completing basic training and the Army‟s Chemical Operations Specialist Course, he was assigned to
the 21st Chemical Company, 82nd Airborne Division, at Fort Bragg. In October 1997, Zaun moved to the
82nd‟s 307th Forward Support Battalion. There, he served as the company noncommissioned officer for
Company B and later Company C. He was promoted to sergeant in March 1998.


    Zaun‟s first tour in Army special operations began in December 1999 when he moved to Fort Carson,
Colo., for a two-year tour of duty with the 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne). He was also promoted to
staff sergeant that month. He initially served as the recon/decontamination team sergeant with the unit‟s
Headquarters and Headquarters Company before moving to the group‟s 3rd Battalion to serve as the
battalion‟s Nuclear, Biological and Chemical NCO.


 In May 2002, was assigned to Korea to serve as an NBC Operations NCO with Division Chemical, 2nd
Infantry Division. He returned to both Fort Bragg and the Army special operations community in March
2003 as an NBC Operations NCO with HHC, USASOC. He was promoted to sergeant first class in April
2004.


Zaun‟s military education includes the Jumpmaster Course, the Basic Airborne Course, the Defense
Hazardous Material Course, the Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course, the Primary Leadership
Development Course and the Chemical Operations Specialist Course.


     His awards and decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, Bronze Star Medal, the Army
Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense
Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service
Medal, the Korean Defense Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer
Professional Development Ribbon, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Master
Parachutist Badge and the Driver and Mechanic Badge.


     Zaun is survived by his mother, Cheryl Zaun of Eden Prairie, Minn.; his father, Kenneth Zaun of
Buffalo, Minn.; and his sisters, Sabrina Mintz and Sharee Keolsch, also of Buffalo.

Minnesota soldier dies in Iraq vehicle accident

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — A 27-year-old soldier from Brooklyn Park is the latest Minnesotan to die in Iraq,
the Department of Defense announced Monday.

The soldier died in a vehicle crash, the Department of Defense said.
Sgt. 1st Class Mickey E. Zaun, 27, of Brooklyn Park, died Friday in Mosul, Iraq, from injuries
sustained in a collision between two armored vehicles. Zaun was assigned to the U.S. Army
Special Operations Command in Fort Bragg, N.C.

Zaun‘s former mother-in-law said he loved serving in the military.

―We‘re going to love and miss that kid forever,‖ Julie Eberhardt, of Jamestown, N.D., told the Star
Tribune. Zaun was formerly married to Eberhardt‘s daughter, Melissa Benoit, an Army paratrooper
stationed in Germany. ―We have great respect for him.‖

The accident remains under investigation.


From the family of SFC Mickey E. Zaun, USASOC

Two-and-a-half miles named for fallen soldier Mickey Zaun
At Fort Leonard Wood, MO, www.wood.army.mil on Friday, January, 25, 2008, a prominent
and heavily-traveled Post Troop Trail was dedicated to my/our Mickey for his steadfast
commitment to fitness, the Army, and the Chemical Corps. Mickey's Memorial Ceremony
was sincere, heartfelt, and wonderfully orchestrated. Plus, all Army Personnel warmly and
with deep respect embraced us (Sharee, Janelle, Amanda, and me) as if we were part of
their family, and proudly we are. A special ceremonial treat was that five of Mickey's Special
Forces "Brothers in Arms" were in attendance. It felt good to be reunited with these high
quality men.

Mickey earned his position as Chemical Operations Specialist from the highly respected
U.S. Army CBRN School (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear), which is located at
Fort Leonard Wood - www.wood.army.mil/usacmls. This school only accepts the top 1%
across all Branches of Service: Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. There are only 55
Chemical Operations Specialists, one stationed in each state and the others located elsewhere. Chemical Operations
Specialists not only serve the Armed Forces but also assist in detection and clean-up of civilian hazardous disasters
such as identifying, dismantling, and decontaminating meth labs. I was told that Mickey was truly "elite of the elite." I
                                                             swell with pride for my son, and he lives in my heart daily.

                                                              At Mickey's dedication, Joseph Baker, CBRN Technical
                                                              Staff Member, asked me if I'd like a copy of his book that
                                                              features Mickey, "Looking Out from Under the Hat"
                                                              www.dorrancebookstore.com. Joseph served as Mickey's
                                                              Drill Sergeant while he went through Basic Training at
                                                              Fort McClellan, Alabama. Along with Mickey's Basic
                                                              Training Graduation Book, Joseph sent me the book he
                                                              authored, and I must share his inscription, "Robert F.
                                                              Kennedy said, each time someone stands up for an ideal,
                                                              or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against
                                                              injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope" and "Mickey
                                                              is one of those ripples of hope." Joseph told me that
                                                              Mickey attacked every task thrown before him with vigor
                                                              and often asked for more and that he was incapable of
                                                              being forgotten. Words this mother loved to read and
                                                              hear.

The Guidon, which is Fort Leonard Wood's authorized newspaper, featured a very nice story on Mickey's Troop Trail
Dedication.


       Post Troop Trail
         dedicated
                                               Wednesday, 30 January 2008
By Allison Choike
GUIDON staff

• Two-and-a-half miles named for chemical Soldier

Thousands of Soldiers run the main Troop Trail on post every year, and part of it was dedicated to a fallen
Soldier, Friday, memorializing his love for physical fitness and dedication to the Army and the Chemical
Corps.

Sgt. 1st Class Mickey Zaun was recognized in a ceremony that dedicated the first two-and-half miles of the
Troop Trail running from the corner of Iowa Avenue and South Dakota Avenue to the installation's water
tower.

Zaun, 27, died in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Jan. 28, 2005, from injuries sustained during a head-
on collision of two armored vehicles, near Mosul, Iraq.

Family, friends and fellow comrades gathered to pay tribute to a chemical Soldier who was devoted to the
Army and eventually followed his dream to become a Special Forces Soldier.

The United States Army Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear School commandant and
regimental command sergeant major came up with the idea to name the trail in honor of Zaun because of
his decorated career and love for physical fitness.

"Zaun really represented the (chemical) corps well in his duties in being a team member in special
operations. He went above and beyond the call of any Soldier, in which the mission he took on as a 74
Delta," said Regimental Command Sgt. Maj. Patrick Alston, USACBRNS.

Alston said Zaun never said "no" to a mission that was presented to him, and doing something special at
Fort Leonard for him was something that needed to be done.

"This kid never said no to anything that the corps asked him to do ... we just knew in our hearts the right
thing to do was to make sure that we left a legacy in the means of some tangible substance for his name to
be carried on," Alston said.

Alston said Zaun's family was touched by the idea and believe that his legacy will help to motivate other
Soldiers.

"I was overjoyed when I heard about this idea. I thought, 'oh my gosh, they love my boy.' My boy really
loved his job. So all of this is really a treat for me," said Cheryl Zaun, Mickey's mother.

Cheryl said her son always wanted to be in the Army, even as a small child playing with G.I Joe action
figures.




Soldiers from the Chemical Basic and Advanced Noncommissioned Officers Course are the first to
 run on the newly dedicated Sgt. 1st Class Mickey E. Zaun Memorial Troop Trail, Jan. 25. Photo by
                                          Allison Choike.

Brig. Gen. Thomas Spoehr, USACBRNS commandant, said because of Zaun's actions and those like him,
there are fewer threats to our nation and world today.

"Sgt. 1st Class Zaun died a hero, although if he were with us today, he would just shake his head and say, '
I was just doing my job.' Then he would probably name a dozen other Soldiers he thought deserved
recognition instead. This is the kind of man he was, modest, generous and always putting the lives of
Soldiers in front of his own," Spoehr said.

Cheryl agreed.

"I know that he is smiling down from heaven and probably thinking what the big fuss is all about," Cheryl
said.

Overall, Spoehr said he wants younger Soldiers going through one of their most life-altering changes, basic
training, to be motivated by a Soldier like Zaun.

"I am convinced that they (Soldiers) will draw strength from his example. Sgt. 1st Class Zaun loved the
military, and was an inspiration to other in his pursuit of physical fitness. I can think of no better area on this
installation to dedicate to his memory," Spoehr said. "He will live forever in the hearts of his family, friends
and comrades, and now with this trail's dedication, he will become known to others."
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 February 2008 )


Sgt. 1st Class Mickey E. Zaun
               Age: 27
               Marital status: Single
               Home of record: Brooklyn Park, Minn.
               Unit: Headquarters U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg
              Circumstances: He was traveling in an armored vehicle when it crashed into another vehicle near Mosul, Iraq.
              Date of death: January 28, 2005

Sgt. 1st Class Mickey E. Zaun of Brooklyn Park, Minn., was traveling in an armored vehicle when it crashed
into another vehicle near Mosul, according to a statement from the U.S. Army Special Operations
Command. The accident was not related to hostile activities.

Zaun, who was 27, was a chemical operations specialist assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters
Company, U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg.

Zaun joined the Army on Aug. 10, 1995, a month after his 18th birthday. After completing basic training and
the Army‘s Chemical Operations Specialist Course, he was assigned to the 21st Chemical Company in the
82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg.

His first assignment with special operations began in 1999, when he was assigned to the 10th Special
Forces Group at Fort Carson, Colo. After a tour in Korea, Zaun returned to Fort Bragg and the special
operations community in March 2003.

Zaun‘s many awards include the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal.

He is survived by his mother, Cheryl Zaun of Eden Prairie, Minn.; his father, Kenneth Zaun of Buffalo, Minn.;
and two sisters, Sabrina Mintz and Sharee Keolsch, both of Buffalo.



              1st Lt. Jason G. Timmerman




              Hometown: Tracy, Minnesota, U.S.


              Age: 24 years old


              Died: February 21, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


              Unit: Army National Guard, 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry Division, Montevideo, Minn.


              Incident: Killed by a roadside bomb blast in Baghdad.


              For the Rev. Paul Hadusek, the best story about Jason Timmerman involves a clothes dryer. A few
              years ago, Timmerman was selling his and a woman stopped by to ask about it. She mentioned that
              her dryer had broken. So Timmerman went to her house and repaired hers, rather than making a
              sale. Timmerman, 24, of Tracy, Minn., died Feb. 21 when a bomb detonated near his convoy in
              Baghdad. He was based in Montevideo. "He had a wonderful personality, just related to everyone
              and had such a big smile," said Roman Catholic Sister Teresita Schaefbauer. "He was very, very giving
              all the time I knew him." Timmerman built houses with Habitat for Humanity, served meals at a soup
              kitchen, helped with a Goodwill truck, sponsored a foster child overseas and helped paint the church.
              Timmerman was a high school math and computer teacher last year. He received a bachelor's degree
              in math education in 2002 and a master's in computer and education technology in 2004, both from
              Dakota State University. At the time of his deployment, he was a computer technician at Northstar
              Mutual Insurance Co. He is survived by his wife, Teresa.


1ST. LT. JASON TIMMERMAN

BY DAVID HAWLEY Pioneer Press

'Great tragedy'
leaves hole in
middle of small
Minnesota town
COTTONWOOD, Minn. — Jason Timmerman was as an "all-American kid" who had enough confidence in high school
to date the superintendent's daughter.

A farm kid, Timmerman was part of the large, close-knit Belgian farming community in southwest Minnesota. The
news of his death, one of three Minnesotans killed in Iraq on Monday, has hit the village where he grew up hard.

"We are a small rural community," said the Rev. Paul Hadusek, the priest at the family's Belgian Catholic Church, St.
Clotilde's in nearby Green Valley. "Jason was known, liked and admired by so many. It is a great tragedy."

On Tuesday, the rural lane leading to the farm of his parents, Gary and Pat Timmerman, carried a steady procession
of cars as dozens of relatives and friends paid their respects. A flag in the windswept yard flew at half-staff in front of
a small display that included an antique plow and a sign that read, "Support Our Troops."

Timmerman's younger brother, Travis, also is a member of the 151st Field Artillery in Iraq. Travis Timmerman was not
with his brother when the bombing took place on Monday. Relatives said Travis Timmerman was expected to arrive
home this week.

An older brother, Craig Timmerman, is studying for the priesthood in Rome, and flew home from Italy on Tuesday,
Hadusek said.

Jason Timmerman, 24, joined the National Guard in 1997, the year before he graduated from high school, said
Palmer Anderson, former superintendent of schools in Cottonwood, a town of about 1,000 residents near Marshall in
southwest Minnesota.

"He was an exemplary type of student," Anderson said. He was very involved in school activities, including the Future
Farmers of America and varsity football, where he was a lineman.

"He was part of a class of students who prided themselves in knowledge and clean competition," Anderson said. "It
was an impressive class."

Timmerman used his military pay with the Guard to help finance college studies at Dakota State University in
Madison, S.D., where he received a master's degree in computer and education technology in 2004.

In his online college profile, Timmerman talked about doing community service projects as a student that included
working on Habit for Humanity homes in the Twin Cities and serving meals at Loaves and Fishes.

"The majority of the people there were just like anyone else, except they had one misfortune that knocked them off
their feet," he wrote.
While working on his graduate degree, Timmerman taught math at a middle school in Madison and later was a math
teacher at Lake Benton High School near Pipestone, Minn.

Less than a year ago, he married Theresa Hildebrand, and the two settled in Tracy, a community southeast of
Marshall, where Theresa taught high school math.

Timmerman was hired by Northstar Mutual Insurance Co. in Cottonwood, northeast of Marshall, to work as a
computer technician.

His parents spent Monday night with their daughter-in-law after learning about Jason Timmerman's death, the Rev.
Hadusek said. Her parents drove through the night from their Canadian home and arrived early Tuesday to be with
their daughter, Hadusek said. Dozens of relatives of the Timmerman family live in the Marshall area.

Jason Timmerman's younger brother Travis also is a member of the 151st Field Artillery in Iraq. Travis Timmerman
was not with his brother when the bombing took place on Monday.

Published in Pioneer Press on February 23, 2005


Minnesota Guardsman killed in Iraq

Associated Press

COTTONWOOD, Minn. — An Army National Guard soldier from Minnesota has been killed in Iraq.

1st Lt. Jason Timmerman, of Cottonwood, died Monday, according to Carmen Brunsvold, who
leads a Marshall-based Guard support group.

Brunsvold told the Independent of Marshall that she spent Monday evening with Timmerman‘s
parents, Gary and Pat Timmerman.
Lt. Col. Denny Shields, a Guard spokesman, said information on military fatalities had to come
from the Department of Defense. The Defense Department cannot release information until 24
hours after the family has been notified, said Staff Sgt. Christina Delai.

The military reported three soldiers were killed Monday in Baghdad when a roadside bomb
detonated as they were evacuating a fellow soldier.

Timmerman graduated from Lakeview High School and had gotten married last year, the
Independent reported.

Before Monday, 13 Minnesota service members had died in military operations in Iraq.

Soldier killed in Iraq honored

MARSHALL, Minn. — Clara Schilling didn‘t know Jason Timmerman. She just thought it was
important to pay her respects as Timmerman, one of three Minnesota National Guardsmen killed in
Baghdad, was laid to rest on Tuesday.

Schilling drove from Redwood Falls to the Church of the Holy Redeemer, joining a tide of people
honoring Timmerman that included Gov. Tim Pawlenty and the state‘s two senators. She stayed
just long enough to leave her card and donation.

―I had six in the (military) myself,‖ Schilling said. ―In the military, the boys go up against some tough
problems. I just feel so bad. Mine all came home.‖

Timmerman, 24, a first lieutenant from Tracy, Sgt. Jesse Lhotka, 24, of Alexandria, and Staff Sgt.
David Day, of St. Louis Park, died Feb. 21 when a roadside bomb exploded. All were members of
the same Montevideo-based Guard unit. Services for Lhotka and Day were planned later in the
week.

Funeral attendees parked and walked several blocks, or took shuttle buses, to get to Holy
Redeemer. Many were family members, friends and co-workers of Timmerman, his wife Teresa, or
his parents, Gary and Pat Timmerman.

The family asked reporters to stay away from the service. Pawlenty, on his way into the church,
said he simply wanted ―to express our gratitude‖ to Timmerman‘s family.

Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., called Timmerman ―a true American hero.‖

The church, with a capacity of 1,000, couldn‘t hold all those who wanted to attend. Some of those
turned away at the front doors included members of Timmerman‘s Guard unit.

―This is just phenomenal,‖ said Steve Doom, a Timmerman relative from Cottonwood. ―I can‘t
believe the number of people. ... It‘s really been a show of support for him and his family.‖

Ahead of Tuesday‘s service, Anisa Spray and Becky Brunsvold carried a flower arrangement —
designed as an American flag — down the sidewalk outside the church. Three members of
Brunsvold‘s family are Guard members serving in Iraq; one of them, Quentin Brunsvold, is Spray‘s
boyfriend.

―It‘s a very big eye-opener,‖ Brunsvold said of the men‘s deaths. ―I never thought that this would
happen. It opens your eyes (and) makes you think this is real.‖

―Every time you talk to them now is precious,‖ Spray said.

Chris Pesch of Cottonwood, yet another member of the Montevideo unit, said he joined the Guard
about 4" years ago to earn money for college. He thought more about flood-fighting than combat,
he said.

For now, he hasn‘t been called up.

―You try not to think of it,‖ Pesch said. ―I could get called up tomorrow.‖

— Associated Press
                Staff Sgt. David F. Day




                Hometown: Saint Louis Park, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 25 years old


                Died: February 21, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army National Guard, 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry Division, Montevideo, Minn.


                Incident: Killed by a roadside bomb blast in Baghdad.


Army Staff Sgt. David F. Day
Died February 21, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


25, of Saint Louis Park, Minn.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry
Division, Minnesota Army National Guard, Montevideo, Minn.; killed Feb. 21 when an improvised
explosive device detonated as he was assisting injured soldiers in his command in Baghdad. Also
killed were Army 1st Lt. Jason G. Timmerman and Army Sgt. Jesse M. Lhotka.

Day ‗found his way with duty, honor and courage‘

Army Command Sergeant Major Erik Arnie talked about Staff Sgt. David F. Day at a flag-pole
dedication ceremony in his honor on July 9 during Pioneer Prairie Days in Minnesota. — Ed.

The date of 21 February 2005 has been etched into the small communities of Western Minnesota,
such as Appleton, Marshall and Morris, for all eternity. For it was on that day that the lives of three
young, brave men from Charlie Company, 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, were sacrificed for
their country and their comrades half a world away.

On that morning 1st Lt. Jason Timmerman, Staff Sgt. David Day and Sgt. Jesse Lhotka were
conducting what was supposed to be an ordinary mission. The mission turned out to be anything
but ordinary.

First Lt. Timmerman, Staff Sgt. Day and Sgt. Lhotka were traveling in the 2nd Echelon of Charlie
Company on mission. They had departed the company area at approximately 7 a.m. First Lt.
Timmerman and Staff Sgt. Day were in the same Humvee with their driver. Sgt. Lhotka was in
another Humvee, with his driver and gunner, that lost control somehow, left the road and began to
roll, injuring two soldiers. The small convoy stopped and did what it was trained to do, provide
security around the scene and begin assisting the injured. Staff Sgt. David Day, the squad leader
of most of those on the scene, did exactly what he was trained to do, take care of his men. After a
medevac was called in, the first injured soldier was carried to a helicopter. The second soldier was
being carried on a stretcher by 1st Lt. Timmerman; Staff Sgt. Day, Sgt. Lhotka and a soldier from
another unit who had also stopped to provide security. As they carried the soldier across the road
towards the helicopter an explosion occurred within a few feet of the group. Three soldiers from
Western Minnesota died that morning and two others were seriously wounded.

Many of you did not personally know Staff Sgt. David Day — but you did. You know of the boys
who grew up from this area; playing ball in the park, riding bikes to the store with a buck from
mowing and excitement on what awaited, swimming and fishing in the Pomme de Terre, playing
cops and robbers throughout the neighborhood, chasing the fire trucks when they came flashing
by, going to Scout camp; and pretending the enemies of America were in the backyard and he was
an Army sergeant stopping them in their tracks.
You know of the young men, desiring to be their own man, going off to vocational school or college
or joining the service or going to work in the elevator and eventually finding their own way. You
know of the those men finding their sweethearts. Oh yes, you know Dave Day — but he was more.

Dave found that serving and protecting was his calling. Whether a police officer with the St. Louis
Park Police Department, or a soldier in the Minnesota Army National Guard, or a son and a
husband, Dave Day was dedicated to serving and giving back to those who had given to him. Staff
Sgt. Day lived out his childhood imaginings and found his own way with duty, honor and courage.

Duty: an act or course of action required of one by position, custom, law or regulation. Moral
obligation: the compulsion felt to meet such obligations. These are just a few of the definitions
listed in most dictionaries.

On the morning of 21 February 2005, Staff Sgt. Day was performing his duty. More than just the
duty that he swore to the day he pledged the oath to serve his president and country. He was
doing the duties of a warrior. ―I will always place the mission first.‖ He was out on a mission;
helping to protect and secure the new state of Iraq. He did not hesitate to accept this mission when
the Charlie Company commander issued it, therefore placing the mission ahead of himself. ―I will
never accept defeat.‖ He did not accept defeat; when one of his own teams lost a vehicle, he
reacted quickly to recover his soldiers and vehicle and attempted to continue on with the assigned
mission.

Honor: personal integrity maintained without legal or other obligations;

―I will never quit.‖ He certainly did not quit just because something had gone wrong — he obligated
himself to carry on as did the rest of his squad from Company C to set up security around the
perimeter of the scene and help his comrades.

Courage: Some say that courage is the lack of fear. I say courage is having fear, but knowing and
understanding your fear — using it to motivate you and knowing how to put it aside when duty
calls. Staff Sgt. Day certainly overcame any fears when he assessed the situation and reacted in a
way to assist his men. ―I will never leave a fallen comrade.‖

It is right that we pay tribute to Staff Sgt. David Day and place a memorial within his community —
but not just as a reminder of a boy, a man, a son and a husband, but that of a servant with duty,
honor and courage — to those he loved dearly and those he served bravely.

I am honored and proud to be a part of this event. And to Amy, David and Vickie — on behalf of
the 1st Battalion 151st Field Artillery, the community of Morris, the state of Minnesota and the Army
National Guard, the St. Louis Park Police and friends — thank you for letting all of us know Dave.

He will be forever remembered!

Minnesota towns honor fallen soldier

MORRIS, Minn. — Two by two, a procession of 110 squad cars with lights flashing drove slowly
and silently through this western Minnesota city.

A Blackhawk helicopter flew over the procession, flying low enough to create a stir of dust.

And when a white hearse carrying Staff Sgt. David Day drove by, people laid down pink, red and
peach roses on the streets of Morris in tribute to a Minnesota soldier who laid down his life last
week in Iraq.

Day, 25, a Morris native who was a St. Louis Park police officer, was one of three members of the
same Minnesota National Guard unit who were killed Feb. 21 by a roadside bomb in Baghdad.
Separate funerals were held earlier in the week for 1st Lt. Jason Timmerman of Tracy, and Sgt.
Jesse Lhotka of Alexandria. Gov. Tim Pawlenty and first lady Mary Pawlenty attended all of the
funerals.

After the procession passed Thursday, the crowd dissipated, leaving a line of roses behind them.

―It kind of just overwhelms you, there‘s so much support here,‖ said Carolyn Smith, who held an
American flag.

Day, the youngest child of David and Vicki Day, was remembered as a hardworking, good-
humored and courageous young man.
An estimated 1,000 people packed Assumption Catholic Church for Day‘s funeral. Their ranks
included more than 250 law enforcement members from 70 agencies, including 65 from the St.
Louis Park Police Department, which swore in Day in February 2004, and the staffs of the Morris
police and Stevens County sheriff‘s departments. Day had also worked as a community service
officer in Morris.

Seating and closed-circuit televisions were set up in the church basement and at St. Mary‘s School
to accommodate the large numbers.

The Rev. Alan Wielinski shared family stories about Day and reiterated that Day had ―laid down his
life for his friends.‖ The three soldiers were killed while coming to the aid of injured comrades.

―The selfless service of David, and countless other soldiers like him, gives witness to some of the
very best of human qualities: courage, faithfulness, selflessness, steadfastness, loyalty and love
unto death,‖ he said.

Stevens County Sheriff Randy Willis said Day was a ―great kid.‖

―A lot of people are liked. A lot of people are respected. But it‘s hard to be both,‖ Willis said. ―He
pulled it off.‖

Capt. Kirk DiLorenzo of the St. Louis Park Police Department worked with Day for two years. He
stood on the church steps while Day‘s coffin was brought in and out.

―All of the officers are heartbroken,‖ he said.

Day married his longtime girlfriend, Amy Gulbrandson, 12 days before his deployment in October.
Sgt. 1st Class James Howe was Day‘s first sergeant and knew Day for about five years.

―He‘s not only a good soldier, but a good individual, a great person,‖ Howe said before the funeral.
―The kind of guy you‘d want your daughter to marry.‖

Before the procession, Brian Brummond, of Morris, spoke of his ―very hard emotions.‖ His son,
Joshua, 23, is in Day‘s unit — the Montevideo-based 151st Field Artillery — and was assigned to
gather the personal belongings of Day, Timmerman and Lhotka to be sent back home.

―He said it was one of the hardest things he‘s had to do,‖ Brummond said.

— Associated Press

David Day was raised in the western Minnesota town of Morris until he moved to St. Louis Park and became a police
officer. Day, also a member of the Minnesota National Guard deployed to the war zone of Iraq just 12 days after
marrying his longtime girlfriend, Amy Gulbrandson.

Staff Sgt. Day was a member of Charlie Company in Morris. A unit of the 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry
Division, based out of Montevideo serving in Baghdad Iraq when he was tragically killed on February 21, 2005, during
a convoy mission. Staff Sgt. Day was in one of the lead Humvee's with his driver and gunner when one of the vehicles
behind them somehow lost control and rolled. The small convoy stopped and did what it was trained to do, provide
security around the scene and begin assisting the injured. Staff Sgt. David Day, the squad leader of most of those on
the scene, did exactly what he was trained to do, take care of his men. Staff Sgt. Day had his Humvee set sideways in
the road, so his driver and gunner could set a perimeter, and then he ran back to the accident and gave assistance to the
injured soldiers. After a medevac was called in, the first injured soldier was assisted to a helicopter. The second soldier
was being carried on a stretcher by 1st Lt.Timmerman; Staff Sgt. Day, Sgt. Lhotka, a medivac soldier from the
helicopter, and two soldiers from another unit who had also stopped to provide security. As they were crossing a guard
rail with the soldier an explosion occurred underneath them. Day, Timmerman and Lhotka were all killed and the two
of the soldiers from the other unit were severely injured. The soldier they were carrying on the stretcher received
severe injuries, however, he survived.

For their actions, Staff Sgt. David F. Day, Lt. Jason Timmerman, and Sgt. Jesse Lhotka received the Bronze Star and
Purple Heart.

110 police squad cars filled the town of Morris as David Day was laid to rest.
                Sgt. Jesse M. Lhotka




                Hometown: Alexandria, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 24 years old


                Died: February 21, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army National Guard, 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry Division, Montevideo, Minn.


                Incident: Killed by a roadside bomb blast in Baghdad.


When Jesse Lhotka showed up for a blind date holding a single white rose, his future wife thought he was too young
for her _ six years her junior. But he proved to be extraordinarily mature, having helped his single mother raise five
younger siblings. The couple wed in September, just before Lhotka left for Iraq. "Jesse, you are the best thing that
ever happened to me," his widow, Stacey, said in a letter read at his funeral. Lhotka, 24, helped evacuate two soldiers
whose Humvee had flipped over before he became one of three Minnesota National Guardsmen killed by a roadside
blast Feb. 21. The Alexandria, Minn., native was based in Montevideo, Minn. As a kid, Lhotka built tree forts, created
plays and invented games for his siblings. He played football in high school and was class president during his
sophomore and senior years. He joined the National Guard in 1999, and it helped pay his way through St. Cloud State
University. He graduated with a degree in finance and was working as a credit analyst for a leasing company before
leaving for Iraq. In a letter read at his funeral, his mother thanked him for all of his love and respect, and for bringing
Stacey into the family. "I still have six children, and now one angel," she wrote.




'He was the absolute life of any crowd'

BY ALEX FRIEDRICH
Pioneer Press
ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — Stacey Lhotka was dreaming about her husband, Jesse, on Sunday morning when the phone
rang. It wasn't even 8 a.m. in Minnesota. He was always laughing about forgetting the time change since he had been
stationed in Iraq.

It would be the last time the newlyweds would talk.

Sgt. Jesse Lhotka was killed the next day by a roadside bomb in Baghdad. On Tuesday, she gathered with her family
to grieve and share their memories of a man with a sense of humor and determination to succeed. But all she
remembers about that phone conversation two days earlier is that it was a "great call."

The 24-year-old Lhotka grew up in Appleton, Minn. As a kid, family members recall, he was prankster and a master
creator and organizer, building tree forts, creating a play, or a inventing a game for his siblings — for which he'd
make and change the rules as he pleased, of course.

At Lac Qui Parle High School he played football and was senior class president. He was even voted a homecoming
attendant. His fellow classmates voted him "Class Clown."

He joined the National Guard in July 1999. It helped pay for school.

Lhotka met his wife through a fellow Guard member, a man who's serving in Lhotka's unit in Iraq. It was a blind date,
but that didn't deter Lhotka, a romantic.

"He greeted me at the door with a white rose," she said.

He was about six years younger than her, so Stacey Lhotka thought he was "too young at the time."
But Lhotka turned out to be very mature for his age. Since the age of 14, his father-in-law said, Lhotka helped his
single mother raise his five younger siblings.

Mother Beverly Lhotka called him "the best big brother."

He also turned out to be a husband who had respect for old-fashioned ways and yet was not afraid to show
sensitivity.

Stacey's father, Dave Walters, a 53-year-old who runs a trucking business in nearby Sauk Centre, recalled Lhotka's
gratitude when he took the young man on a four-wheeling trip with some friends last spring.

Lhotka opened up to him on the way back home, Walters said. Lhotka told him his dad had never taken him hunting
or four-wheeling, he recalled. Lhotka told Walters, "I've never gotten to do stuff like this. I just loved it."

Walters enjoyed the time alone with Lhotka so much that he eased up on the gas pedal to give them more time to
talk.

"That's when we first bonded," Walters said.

When it came time to propose to Stacey, Lhotka visited Walters at his shop, and as good as asked for his daughter's
hand in marriage. The two spent almost four hours having a heart-to-heart talk in the shop about the ins and outs of
marriage in the face of a possible deployment to Iraq.

Lhotka finally proposed to Stacey when they were about to depart for a send-off party in Appleton in early
September. A sister said he presented her with a dozen roses and a note asking her to "share my life with me."

They were married Sept. 18, 2004. At the wedding, Walters said, "we put (Iraq) on the back burner, but it was always
on everyone's mind."

After he was deployed, Lhotka was able to take a five-day leave in mid-December, where he spent an early Christmas
with his family.

He often e-mailed and called home, and after Iraqi elections, he called almost every day.

He never complained, family members said. The food was good, he said, and they recall he was always focused on
how they were doing.

Stacey was drawn to him because of his lust for life, she said.

"He was the absolute life of any crowd he was in," she said. "He was the biggest socializer." He was supposed to
serve until about April 2006, but the newlyweds had hoped his deployment would end sooner.

"He (once) said, 'When I return, our lives will be perfect,'" Stacey recalled Tuesday.

Published in Pioneer Press on February 23, 2005


Army Sgt. Jesse M. Lhotka
Died February 21, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


24, of Alexandria, Minn.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 151st Field Artillery, 34th Infantry Division,
Minnesota Army National Guard, Montevideo, Minn.; killed Feb. 21 when an improvised explosive
device detonated as he was assisting injured soldiers in his unit in Baghdad. Also killed were Army
1st Lt. Jason G. Timmerman and Army Staff Sgt. David F. Day.

Minnesota town mourns soldier killed in Iraq

Associated Press

APPLETON, Minn. — A soldier who died while aiding his injured comrades was remembered for
his love of others on Wednesday by a community that honors its war dead by naming its streets
after them.

The crowd of 800 who turned out to pay their respects to Sgt. Jesse Lhotka was too large for Zion
Lutheran Church, where the service were held, so over 200 had to watch on a screen at the former
Appleton High School.

―He absolutely loved people,‖ the Rev. Vickie Haverkamp said during her eulogy. ―And everyone
around him loved him.‖

Lhotka, 24, of Alexandria, an Appleton native, was among three Minnesota National Guardsmen
with the Montevideo-based 151st Field Artillery killed by a roadside blast on Feb. 21 in Baghdad,
Iraq

Lhotka was credited with saving the life of a fellow solider from nearby Benson whose Humvee had
flipped, and had just helped evacuate another soldier, when he was killed along with Staff Sgt.
David Day, 25, of St. Louis Park, who grew up in Morris, and 1st Lt. Jason Timmerman, 24, of
Tracy.

―Jesse, you are the best thing that ever happened to me,‖ said his widow, Stacey Lhotka, in a letter
that Haverkamp read to the mourners. The Lhotkas got married last September, just before he
shipped out.

The pastor also read letters from Lhotka‘s mother, Beverly, and sister, Sonja.

His sister talked about a brother she remembered for ―a comforting smile that could warm the
freezing rain‖ and ―big brown eyes (that could) take away the pain.‖

His mother thanked him for all of his love and respect, and for bringing Stacey into the family. ―I still
have six children, and now one angel,‖ she wrote.

More than 100 uniformed troops with the 151st Field Artillery joined in offering a military salute to
Lhotka and his survivors. Two AH64 Blackhawk helicopters flew low over the church as the
mourners gathered around his casket after the service.

Maj. Gen. Larry Shellito, adjutant general of the Minnesota National Guard, and Brig. Gen. Jon
Trost, an Appleton native, were among those joining Gov. Tim Pawlenty and local legislators in
paying their respects.

The community will add Lhotka‘s name to the list of 35 war heroes remembered on a monument
dedicated just last year. Appleton is also expected to name a street in his memory, continuing a
tradition the community has followed since World War II.
Geneva Hayes, an Appleton resident since 1937 who welcomed veterans from World War II, Korea
and Vietnam, was part of the town‘s ―Home Town Calling‖ group that supported the veterans and
their families. Hayes said the town has experienced sadness like this before, but this time is
different.

Lhotka had been a part of the community until just such a short while ago, and everyone had
thought so much of him, she explained.

―That is what the town is sad about,‖ she said.

Funds are being collected for a memorial fund at the Farmers and Merchants Bank
of Appleton. The proceeds will be used to assist Lhotka‘s siblings with their
educations.


                Spec. Travis R. Bruce




                Hometown: Byron, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 22 years old


                Died: March 23, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 170th Military Police Company, 504th Military Police Battalion, Fort Lewis, Wash.


                Incident: Killed by a mortar round while on guard duty in Baghdad.


Travis Bruce wrote home about the close calls, like the night someone dressed like an American soldier tossed a
bomb into a nearby tent. The Military Police officer was apprehensive about his second tour in Iraq. The first time, he
guarded U.S. administrator Paul Bremer and other VIPs. This time, he guarded Saddam Hussein's palaces. "He
thought he was really lucky to get out of there (alive) the first time," said Jerry Bruce, an uncle. Travis Bruce, 22, of
Byron, Minn., was killed March 23 in Baghdad, Iraq, when a mortar round detonated near his position. He was based
at Fort Lewis. In high school, Bruce loved playing sports, especially football and baseball, and worked at a rib joint for
extra money. The 2002 graduate enlisted in the Army to help pay for college and followed his father and grandfather
in becoming a military policeman. "He just wanted to better himself," said his mother, Vickie Bruce. He was hoping to
return to the United States soon so he could begin training as a K-9 officer in Texas. He is also survived by his father,
Kenneth Bruce.




                Capt. Kelly C. Hinz




                Hometown: Woodbury, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 30 years old


                Died: May 2, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Marines, Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 323, Marine Aircraft Group 11, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine
                Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.
                Incident: Killed when his F/A-18 Hornet aircraft crashed in Iraq.


                Nearly a year after his father died, Kelly Hinz sent his brother an e-mail with an important message.
                "He wanted to make sure that we had flowers sent to his wife, Molly, for Mother's Day, and some for
                Mom, because my dad always sent her flowers," said his brother, Ben. "He was definitely devoted to
                his family." Hinz, 30, of Woodbury, Minn., died May 2 in a midair collision of his F/A-18 Hornet fighter
                plane. He was based at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar. Hinz had been living in San Diego with his
                wife, Molly, and their 7-month-old daughter, Abby. The oldest of four boys, Kelly Hinz was a member
                of the state champion alpine ski team at his military prep school and came back after graduation to
                work as an assistant coach. He attended the University of Colorado at Boulder and graduated from
                the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul in 1997 with a degree in business administration. He became
                a private pilot and entered the Marines. His death came nearly a year after his father, a former Navy
                pilot, died in a World War II-era plane he was flying during an air show in Wisconsin.




Kelly C. Hinz


                     Hinz Kelly C. Hinz, age 30 of Woodbury, MN. Husband to Molly Milbert-Hinz and Father to
                     Abby. Captain, U.S. Marines - Lost to us while serving in combat operations in Iraq. Also
                     survived by his Mother, Patricia and three brothers. Visitation: Thursday May 12th 5:00-8:00
                     PM at the St. Paul Seminary Chapel located at SE corner of Mississippi River Blvd and Summit
                     Ave. Parking available east of Chapel. Memorial Services: Friday May 13th 10:00 AM at the
                     University of St. Thomas Chapel located at SW corner of Selby and So. Cleveland Ave. Private
                     family internment to follow services. Memorials preferred to the Abby Hinz College Education
Fund, P.O. Box 45161, San Diego, CA, 92145. Further inquiries call Wulff Woodbury Funeral Home; 651-738-9615.




                Published in Star Tribune on May 11, 2005


Captain Kelly C. Hinz, USMC
Star Tribune -- MINNEAPOLIS / St PAUL, May 5, 2005 -- Capt. Kelly C. Hinz, 30, whose hometown is Woodbury,
Minn., was one of two U.S. Marine pilots killed in a plane crash over south central Iraq on Monday, his family said
Thursday. His death came less than a year after his father -- Donald Hinz, a former military pilot -- was killed when
his vintage fighter plane crashed during an air show in Wisconsin. Kelly Hinz and the other pilot killed this week --
Maj. John C. Spahr, 42, of Cherry Hill, N.J. -- had deployed with an F/A-18 "Hornet" fighter group aboard the USS
Carl Vinson, and the ship lost contact with them at 10:10 p.m. Monday, said a statement from the U.S. Central
Command headquarters. There was no initial indication of hostile fire in the area at that time, the statement said,
and the incident is under investigation. Capt. Kelly C. HinzAfter growing up in Minnesota, Hinz and his wife, Molly,
lived with their 7-month-old daughter Abby in San Diego, Calif. His mother, Pat Hinz, continues to live in
Woodbury. One of his three brothers, Ben, is an F/A-18C pilot based in California. The other brothers are Kurt and
Luke. The family issued a statement on Thursday and has declined to comment beyond that. Hinz graduated from
St. Thomas Academy in Mendota Heights in 1993 and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul in 1997. "I am
praying for the Hinz family, for them to have faith in God," said Bill Miley of Hayward, Wis., who coached Kelly
Hinz on an Alpine ski team that won a state high school championship in 1993. Miley and others gave Kelly Hinz
credit for bolstering the family's spirits after his father's accident in late May 2004. "It was very important to Kelly
and his family that they live his father's legacy," Miley said. "This young man was an unbelievable person. ...
Everyone he touched walked away feeling better." Donald Hinz is memorialized on a website for the Red Tail
Project -- which celebrates the Tuskegee Airmen, African-American fighter pilots of World War II. "Don had a
passion for telling a vastly unheralded part of American history in a way that didn't include patting himself on the
back," said Stan Ross, who coordinates the Red Tail Project and worked on it with Don Hinz. "That's the way he
carried himself, and that's the way he raised his family," Ross said Wednesday. "I learned a lot from him, and I
know his sons did, too." Kelly Hinz shared a love of flying with his father and his brothers, said former high school
and college friends. "He got those boys hooked on flying from Day One," said Randall Mardell, who was captain of
the championship ski team. Hinz's interests didn't stop with flying or skiing, his friends said, but he was remarkably
well rounded and accomplished. "This is the guy we would want over there fighting for us," said Mardell, who now
lives in Irving, Texas. "He is the poster, better than anything you see on TV. A good-looking guy, an athlete. ... I
know it's a cliché, but he is exactly the kind of guy every mother dreams her daughter will marry." At St. Thomas
Academy, Hinz lettered on the rifle team as well as the Alpine ski team, said Mary Culbertson, the school's
communications director. He served on the Honor Guard, and he also contributed to a literary magazine, the
school newspaper and the yearbook. Later, when he was at the University of St. Thomas (where he earned a
bachelor of arts degree in business administration with a specialty in entrepreneurship), he worked as the high
school's assistant Alpine ski coach. "Kelly probably wasn't the best skier on the hill, but he was the prettiest,"
Miley said. "His flow and his style was an art." During college, he got up before dawn to report for work at his
father's former company, Eagle Sanitation, before attending classes and training for skiing and other athletic
activities, said Jerrod Amadick, a former roommate who now lives in Eagan. "He had his morals straight, he had his
family straight, he had his faith straight," Amadick said. "He was one of those guys who set a goal and just did it."
"He called me on the night before he left," Miley said. "He said, 'I feel great. This is what I have trained for.' He was
so excited to go and take part in the operations over there that when I hung up the phone, I felt positive for him."
Military officials have released few details that would shed light on what went wrong with the flight of the fighter
jets. The planes were about 30,000 feet over south-central Iraq when they lost contact with their base, the
Associated Press reported. Pentagon officials said one F/A-18 fuselage had been found about 15 miles from
Karbala in south-central Iraq, and that Spahr was found strapped in his ejection seat some distance from the
wreckage. They provided no information about the recovery of the second pilot except to say that the body had
been found. Spahr was an instructor at the Navy's so-called Top Gun school for fighter pilots in Nevada and later
served aboard the USS Constellation during combat operations in 2003 in Iraq, according to a Navy biography.

Marine Capt. Kelly C. Hinz
Died May 02, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


30, of Woodbury, Minn.; assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 323, Marine Aircraft Group
11, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Calif.; embarked aboard the
aircraft carrier Carl Vinson killed May 2 when the F/A-18 Hornet aircraft he was piloting crashed in
Iraq while flying in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Minn. native killed in Iraq plane crash

By Amy Forliti

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — Before Capt. Kelly Hinz took his last flight with the Marine Corps, he sent his
brother an e-mail with an important message.

―He wanted to make sure that we had flowers sent to his wife, Molly, for Mother‘s Day, and some
for Mom, because my dad always sent her flowers,‖ Hinz‘s brother, Ben, said Thursday, choking
up. ―He was definitely devoted to his family.‖

Hinz and another pilot died Monday when their single-seat F/A-18 Hornet jets collided over south-
central Iraq, according to information from the family and authorities. The two men were based at
Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego.

Hinz, 30 had been living in San Diego with his wife, Molly, and their 7-month-old daughter, Abby.

Hinz‘s death comes nearly one year after his father, former Navy pilot Donald Hinz, died when a
World War II-era plane he was flying made an emergency landing during an air show in Wisconsin.

Donald Hinz‘s love for flying was catching. Kelly, the oldest of four boys, became a private pilot
and then entered the Marines; Ben, the next son in line, is also a Marines fighter pilot based at
Miramar; Kurt, the third brother, has his private license: and Luke was planning to get his license
this summer, said Ben Hinz.
―Although Dad never forced it, it was just there. It was just a part of our life,‖ said Ben Hinz, 27. He
said holidays and family get-togethers often revolved around flying.

The four Hinz brothers all attended St. Thomas Academy, a military prep school in Mendota
Heights. Kelly Hinz graduated from the high school in 1993, and officials there still remember his
dedication to community service and to his family.

―He had the utmost respect for his father, Don, and I‘m not at all surprised that he went into
aviation,‖ said Jack Zahr, the school‘s director of athletics and activities. ―He was the kind of
person that you knew was going to be successful in whatever he chose to do.‖

During his senior year, Hinz was a member of the state champion alpine ski team. He also
participated in a religious group, was a member of the honor guard and volunteered for the Meals
on Wheels program. After graduation, he came back to work as an assistant coach on the team.

Hinz attended the University of Colorado at Boulder from 1993-94 as a mechanical engineering
major, the school said. In 1995, he went to the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, where he
earned a degree in business administration with an emphasis in entrepreneurship in 1997.

He entered the military in July 1996 and joined his current unit on Sept. 3, 2003. He received
awards including the Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbon, the National Defense Service
Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, according to Sgt. Joshua Stueve of Marine
Corps Air Station Miramar.

A statement from the family said Hinz and another pilot, identified by authorities as Maj. John C.
Spahr, 42, of Cherry Hill, N.J., died Monday when their single-seat F/A-18 Hornet jets collided.

Authorities said the planes had launched from the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson and lost contact
with communications Monday night. A statement by Central Command said there was no indication
of hostile fire at the time.

The Hinz family said initial reports suggest a sandstorm and lightning may have led to the collision.




              Chief Warrant Officer 4 Matthew Scott Lourey




              Hometown: East Bethel, Minnesota, U.S.


              Age: 40 years old


              Died: May 26, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


              Unit: Army, 1st Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.


              Incident: Died from injuries sustained on May 26 when their Kiowa OH-58 helicopter was attacked and crashed in
              Buhriz.




                         Matthew Scott Lourey
                        Chief Warrant Officer, United States Army


               NEWS RELEASE from the United States Department of Defense
                                         No. 532-05
                                    IMMEDIATE RELEASE
                                        May 28, 2005
 Media Contact: Army Public Affairs - (703) 692-2000 Public/Industry Contact: (703)428-0711

                            DoD Identifies Army Casualties

  The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were
supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. They died on May 27 from injuries sustained
 on May 26, 2005, in Buhriz, Iraq, when their OH-58 (Kiowa Warrior) came under
    small arms attack and crashed. Both soldiers were assigned to the Army's 1st
   Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North
                                     Carolina.

                                    The soldiers are:

             CW4 Matthew Scott Lourey, 40, of East Bethel, Minnesota
             CW2 Joshua Michael Scott, 28, of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin

For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703)
                                     692-2000.



                                       May 31, 2005

 The Iraq war hits close to home because many soldiers from the Moose Lake area
                                  serve abroad.
                              BY JANNA GOERDT
                     COURTESY OF THE NEWS TRIBUNE

 MOOSE LAKE, MINNESOTA - In a community that has and continues to give so
   much to the United States military, Monday marked a day of remembering.

Hundreds of people gathered in the Moose Lake High School gymnasium Monday
morning for an emotional Memorial Day program. The event included a slide show
filled with images of local military personnel who have been killed in the Iraq war
                          and those who continue to serve.

   ``I think part of the reason I made it through what I did was to be here today,
  honoring these men and women,'' Walt Anderson, a Vietnam War veteran and
  member of the Moose Lake American Legion Post 379, told the crowd. ``You all
               have not forgotten the sacrifices of the unsung heroes.''

 As Anderson finished speaking, the gymnasium lights went dark and a single flute
                             began playing ``Taps.''

 Pictures of troops flickered across a large screen -- troops who have and continue to
serve in the Middle East and elsewhere. Mary Rose Varo of Cromwell sang ``Unsung
                   Hero,'' a song she composed to honor the troops.

   The Cloquet and Moose Lake area communities have endured much loss. Four
soldiers, including Army Chief Warrant Officer Matt Lourey, formerly of rural Pine
                         County, have died in the Iraq war.

 Lourey died in a helicopter crash north of Baghdad on Thursday. His picture was
included with those of Levi Angell of Cloquet, Moises Langhorst of Moose Lake and
Matthew Milczark of Kettle River -- all of whom died in the Middle East within one
                            month of each other in 2004.

 Kay and Ray Graftaas of Barnum attended the event in memory of their nephew,
                              Matt Milczark.

 ``It shouldn't have happened,'' Kay Graftaas said. She was Milczark's godmother.
                          ``He didn't get a chance at life.''

       Milczark was just 18 when he died in a noncombat shooting in Kuwait.

       ``It just never leaves your mind,'' Kay Graftaas said in a shaky voice.

Despite the losses, the communities continue to give, though some have grown weary
 of the steady media attention. Several American Legion members said they didn't
  publicize Monday's events because they wanted to guard local families' privacy.

Among soldiers serving in the military were pictures of Matthew Giersdorf of Moose
Lake, serving with the Army in Fort Lewis, Wash. He has been there a year and may
                  be deployed in January, said his mother, Carla.

``Your heart bursts with pride and sorrow at the same time thinking about it,'' Carla
                                  Giersdorf said.

   There were pictures of Kathy Loban's son, Dan, also from Moose Lake. He is a
dentist with the Marine Corps serving in Fort Campbell, Ky., and will be leaving for
  Iraq in October. He is destined to serve in Baghdad, leaving behind a wife and a
                                      young son.

  Yet even in her concern for her own son's future, Kathy Loban took a moment to
                          think of other people's children.

``I am amazed that there are so many kids around here in the armed forces,'' Kathy
                      Loban said, speaking of the slide show.

               ``It helps to put names to faces,'' Carla Giersdorf said.

After the service, the American Legion Honor Guard marched to the Moose Lake
Area Veterans Memorial Park for traditional Memorial Day services, with much of
                              the crowd following.

The honor guard fired a rifle salute, and a lone bugler again played ``Taps,'' which,
         after a moment, was echoed in the distance by another bugler.

 Former Moose Lake Mayor Clayton Hartman spoke of the town's strong military
                history as he circulated among those gathered.

``The fact that there are a lot of soldiers from Moose Lake who gave their lives, that
just brings it all closer to home, that the war is real,'' said Hartman, a World War II
                                          veteran.

As Moose Lake residents think of past losses and the ongoing war, ``there has been a
    great deal of sorrow, some reflection and some hope that this war on global
                     terrorism will be resolved,'' Hartman said.
   The location of a public memorial service for Chief Warrant Officer Matthew
  Lourey has been changed. The memorial is now scheduled for 1:30 p.m. today at
   East Central High School in Finlayson, Minnesota, according to the Minnesota
                                 National Guard.

Lourey, the son of Minnesota State Senator Becky Lourey and Gene Lourey, died in
                            a helicopter crash in Iraq.

Lourey will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia with full military
                                     honors.

Governor Tim Pawlenty also declared all state and U.S. flags at the state Capitol will
 fly at half-staff today in honor of Lourey and the late U.S. Rep. Joseph Karth, who
                                 passed away last week.
                                     3 June 2005
                            Mourning Matthew Lourey

  Nearly 1,200 people, including 100 state lawmakers, filled the East Central High
   School gymnasium today to honor a fallen soldier and to support a colleague.

  Chief Warrant Officer Matthew Lourey was killed last week when his helicopter
       crashed in Iraq. He was serving his second tour of combat duty there.

             His mother is State Senator Beckey Lourey, DFL-Kerrick.

  Among the speakers was Senate Majority Leader Dean Johnson, DFL-Willmar.
  Johnson is also a two-star general and the top chaplain of the Minnesota Army
                                 National Guard.

 "One day we will understand," Johnson told the group of mourners. "Not today -
           probably not tomorrow, but one day we will understand."

Matthew Lourey's widow, Army Captain Lisa Lourey, said her husband was a great
                    storyteller and sometimes a "goofball."

  But most of all, she said, he was a dedicated husband and a loyal and committed
                                     army aviator.

Lourey will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia on June 10, 2005.
                         Senator To Be At Lourey's Burial
                                  June 10, 2005

 Senator Dean Johnson will represent the state of Minnesota Friday at the burial of
   U.S. Army Warrant Officer Matthew Lourey at Arlington National Cemetery.

Johnson is a Brigadier General in the National Guard and the State National Guard
                                     Chaplain.

 Lourey was the son of Minnesota Senator Becky Lourey. He was killed last month
                   when his helicopter was shot down in Iraq.




Johnson also will be out of the state for two days next Tuesday and Wednesday. He'll
   be taking his turn to receive the bodies of soldiers killed in Iraq and escort the
  caskets to the hearses with the military honor guard at Dover Air Force Base in
                                        Delaware.

  Johnson said his rotation was planned two months ago when it was thought the
    Legislature would be done with its work. Johnson says there will be budget
           negotiations on Monday, Thursday and Friday of next week.
                       Antiwar Activist Bids a Son Farewell
      Minnesota State Senator Never Asked Lorton Soldier to Refuse His Duty
                                By Brigid Schulte
                            Courtesy of the Washington Post
                               Saturday, June 11, 2001

 Becky Lourey walked the nearly two miles in the sweltering heat of the afternoon
 yesterday from the Old Post Chapel at Arlington National Cemetery to the freshly
 dug grave in Section 60, Number 8,187, where her son, Matthew, was to be buried.

Lourey, one of the most liberal state senators in Minnesota, had been one of the most
  outspoken critics of the war in Iraq. She circulated a petition opposing the U.S.
 decision to go to war unilaterally. She publicly sparred with Secretary of Defense
                                Donald H. Rumsfeld.




               Army Captain Lisa Lourey breaks down. To her right is Minnesota State
                           Senator Becky Lourey and Eugene D. Lourey

And at a Democratic campaign rally last year, as Matthew was preparing to return
voluntarily for a second tour of duty in Iraq, she railed against President Bush. "I
 don't want any more chicken hawks making these decisions, lying to us about the
                                 reasons," she said.

 Yesterday, she walked slowly and deliberately behind a military band and the clip-
  clopping horses pulling a caisson with Matthew's coffin. She walked, along with
  Matthew's wife and nine of his brothers and sisters, their children and dozens of
black-clad friends and mourners because, they said, it was one way they could honor
                                        him.

Army Chief Warrant Officer Matthew Scott Lourey, 40, of Lorton and East Bethel,
 Minn., died May 27, a day after his OH-58 Kiowa Warrior helicopter came under
 small arms attack and crashed in Buhriz, just north of Baghdad, according to the
                             Department of Defense.

Chief Warrant Officer Joshua Michael Scott, 28, of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, also died
in the helicopter crash. Counting the two men -- members of the 1st Squadron, 17th
 Cavalry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, based at Fort Bragg, N.C. -- a total of
 1,685 U.S. soldiers have died and nearly 13,000 have been wounded since military
                              operations began in Iraq.

                  This had always been Becky Lourey's worst fear.

   Yesterday, Matthew Lourey's father, Eugene, a one-time code breaker for the
 National Security Agency, sat graveside in a makeshift chair on the green artificial
  turf, shaking and sobbing into a handkerchief. He cried as officers presented a
Bronze Star, Purple Heart and neatly folded flags to Becky Lourey and Matthew's
                                   wife, Lisa.

Matthew Lourey's father and brothers had asked him not to go back. He was one of
 the older pilots in the Army. He had been offered a cushy desk job. The war, they
                           said, was all about oil and greed.

But Becky Lourey never asked him. "I knew he wouldn't be happy any other way,"
she said. She knew that once a soldier is called, it's the soldier's duty to serve. She is
opposed to what she calls the "irresponsible leadership" of the commander in chief
                                 who made the call.

In e-mails Matthew sent her, he, too, described feeling uneasy about the war. But he
             loved the Army, she said. And he looked out for his men.

  "Just because we opposed the war doesn't mean Matthew died in vain," Becky
 Lourey said. "Ever since he died, we've come to find out how many lives he saved,
  how many people he taught. He flew cover for Iraqis when they went to vote."

At a memorial service in Minnesota a few days ago, Matthew's wife, a captain in the
   Army's finance branch who works at the Pentagon, said flying was his dream.

  He joined the Marines after high school. When they wanted him to be a cook, he
quit, became a bush pilot and later signed up for the Army and flight school. He was
  so determined to stay in the sky that when high cholesterol might have grounded
 him, he became a vegetarian and marathon runner. "He died never sacrificing his
               dreams," his wife told the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.

   Military officers left the family alone with the silver coffin that soon would be
   lowered into the ground. Becky Lourey, a woman who bore four children and
 adopted eight, a politician who voted on a resolution to support the troops but not
                                 President Bush, wept.
                         LOUREY, MATTHEW SCOTT
                               CW4 US ARMY
                          DATE OF BIRTH: 07/28/1964
                          DATE OF DEATH: 05/26/2005
                       BURIED AT: SECTION 60 SITE 8187
                      ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY




                         Photo Courtesy of Holly, August 2005
              Courtesy of Barbara McGlynn, Valentines's Day February 2006


 Posted: 3 June 2005 Updated: 11 June 2005 Updated: 21 August 2005 Updated: 11 February
                                          2006




                Chief Warrant Officer Corey J. Goodnature




                Hometown: Clarks Grove, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 35 years old


                Died: June 28, 2005 in Operation Enduring Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Hunter Army Air Field, Ga.


                Incident: Killed on a rescue mission when the MH-47 helicopter he was aboard crashed in the vicinity of
                Asadabad.


Corey J. Goodnature


                    Corey J. Goodnature died protecting our freedom on June 28, 2005 in Eastern Afghanistan. Corey
                    was a quiet man who was dedicated to serving his country and family. He loved being outdoors,
enjoyed hunting and fishing with his boys. Since childhood, he lived up to the family name, carrying a gentle
demeanor, yet strong presence. Corey was a devoted husband, a loving father and a dedicated Night Stalker. Corey
served his nation for 14 years spending seven of those years doing what he particularly loved- flying with fellow Night
Stalkers and supporting Special Operations Forces. Corey is survived by his wife Lori Goodnature of Savannah, sons,
Shea and Brennan of Fort Leavenworth KS., his parents, Deb and Don Goodnature of Clarks Grove MN., his sister,
Amy Purdy of Alden MN., his grandmothers, Deloris Goodnature and Lola Partlow of Albert Lea MN., and many other
family members and friends who loved him and will miss him dearly. Corey died doing something he deeply believed
in and is a true hero to our nation, his family, and friends. We are all grateful for Corey's undeniable dedication and
sacrifice as well as that of those he served and died with. This dedication and sacrifice allow all of us to enjoy our
freedoms and liberty in this great nation. Funeral Services will be Friday, July 8, 2005 at 11 a.m. at the Isle of Hope
United Methodist Church. Burial will be in Minnesota on July 16, 2005. Savannah Morning News, July 6, 2005 Please
sign our Obituary Guestbook at www.savannahnow.com
Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Corey J. Goodnature
Remember Our Heroes


Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Corey J. Goodnature, 35, of Clarks Grove, Minnesota.


CW3 Goodnature died while conducting combat operations when the MH-47 helicopter that he was aboard
crashed in the vicinity of Asadabad, Afghanistan in Kumar Province. He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion,
160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), Hunter Army Air Field, Georgia.


He was born Feb. 13, 1970 in Minnesota. Chief Warrant Officer Three Goodnature graduated from the
University of Minnesota with an Associate's Degree in Aerospace Engineering in 1991, and joined the Army
in October of 1991. He served as a parachute rigger at the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare
Center at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He attended the Warrant Officer Basic Course at Fort Rucker,
Alabama. Upon graduation from Flight School in 1995, Chief Warrant Officer Three Goodnature’s first
assignment was flying UH-1s in Korea. In 1996 he was assigned to Camp Wheeler, Hawaii. He assessed for
the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) in 1998 and was assigned to the 3rd Battalion,
160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) at Hunter Army Air Field, Georgia as an MH-47D
Chinook pilot.


Chief Warrant Officer Three Goodnature's military schools include: the U.S. Army Rigger’s Course,
Warrant Officer Advanced Course, U.S. Army Instrument Examiners Course, the Electronic Warfare
Officers Course, the CH-47D Aircraft Qualification Course, the Special Operations Training Course,
Airborne School, the Air Assault Course, and Survival Evasion Resistance Escape Course and the CH-47D
Instructor Pilot Course.


His awards and decorations include: the Air Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army
Achievement Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Armed
Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on
Terrorism Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Korean Defense
Service Medal, the Overseas Service Ribbon and the Senior Army Aviator Badge, the Airborne Badge, the
Air Assault Badge and the Rigger Badge. He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star
Medal, the Air Medal with “V” device, the Meritorious Service Medal and the Combat Action Badge.


He is survived by his wife Lori of Savannah, Georgia; and two sons, Shea and Brennan, of Fort
Leavenworth, Kansas.


Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Corey J. Goodnature was killed in action on 06/28/05.

DATE POSTED: JULY 1, 2005

PRESS RELEASE: Helicopter crash kills three officers, five special operations Soldiers

U.S. Army Special Operations Command Public Affairs Office

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, July 1, 2005) — An MH-47D Chinook helicopter crashed June 28, 2005
near Asadabad, Afghanistan, killing three special operations officers and five special operations Soldiers from the
160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) while conducting combat operations in support of Operation
Red Wing.

Maj. Stephen C. Reich, 34, of Washington Depot, Conn., Chief Warrant Officer Chris J. Scherkenbach, 40, of
Jacksonville, Fla., Warrant Officer Corey J. Goodnature ,35, of Clarks Grove, Minn., Sgt. 1st Class Marcus V. Muralles,
33, of Shelbyville, Ind., Sgt. 1st Class Michael L. Russell, 31, of Stafford, Va., Staff Sgt. Shamus O. Goare, 29, of Ohio
and Sgt. Kip A. Jacoby, 21, of Pompano Beach, Fla., were killed when the helicopter was struck by an enemy rocket
propelled grenade in the country’s Kunar province. All were assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 160th Special Operations
Aviation Regiment (Airborne) based at Hunter Army Airfield, Ga.

Sgt. 1st Class James W. Ponder, III, 36, of Franklin, Tenn., was killed as a result of the crash. He was assigned to
Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 160th SOAR(A) based at Fort Campbell, Ky.

The officers and Soldiers were deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

Afghan National Army and Coalition forces remain actively engaged in Operation Red Wing, an effort to defeat
terrorists operating in Kunar province. The operation is part of a larger spring campaign by U.S. and Afghan forces to
kill and capture fighters from hideouts in the east and south of Afghanistan.

The MH-47 conducts overt and covert infiltrations, exfiltrations, air assault, resupply, and sling operations over a
wide range of environmental conditions. With the use of special mission equipment and night vision devices, the air
crew can operate in hostile mission environments over all types of terrain at low altitudes, and during periods of low
visibility.

                                  http://www.coreygoodnature.org/




In memory of Corey Goodnature




On June 28, 2005 a team of Navy SEALs came under intense fire in the rugged mountains of eastern
Afghanistan. In answer to their urgent radio calls for assistance, a special group of men leapt at the
challenge. The men assigned to the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, based in Savannah,
responded to the call. Two aircraft departed their firebase with a SEAL security team in an attempt to rescue
the stricken SEALs. During landing, the lead aircraft was hit by Taliban and Al-Qaeda fire and crashed on
the mountainside below. All eight aircrew along with eight fellow Navy SEALs were instantly killed.

Chief Warrant Officer Three Corey Goodnature was the Flight Lead Pilot of that aircraft. Corey and his
fellow soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice in an attempt to save others from harm. He and his crew
responded to the challenge that day because that was their very nature. He‟d rather die than quit, and he
proved it that day. The 160th motto — “Night Stalkers Don‟t Quit!” — is how Corey lived his life. His
devotion to that ethos and his fellow warriors was embodied in his death.

Purpose of the scholarship fund

The purpose of the Corey Goodnature Memorial Scholarship Fund is to establish a permanent fund to
provide scholarships in Corey‟s name to youth wishing to further their education. In 2008, the fund provided
$8,000 in local scholarships and $4,000 to the Night Stalker Association Fund.
The Corey Goodnature Memorial Scholarship Fund is a tax exempt charitable organization under Section
501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Your donation to the Scholarship Fund is tax deductible for federal
and state income tax purposes.

__ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __
Please DETACH and RETURN payment with this form.
Make checks payable to CGMSF
Mail to: Randy Goodnature, 1011 W Clark Street, Albert Lea, MN 56007
Name ______________________________ Donation Amount __________
Street Address:_______________________ Date: ____________________

City, State, Zip:______________________ Check Number:_____________

http://www.coreygoodnature.org/shirts.html

Corey’s biography

CW3 Corey J. Goodnature died June 28, 2005, in eastern Afghanistan when his MH-47D helicopter was shot
down by enemy fire during combat operations. He was born Feb. 13, 1970 in Albert Lea, MN.

Goodnature graduated from the University of Minnesota with an Associate‟s Degree in Aerospace
Engineering in 1991, and joined the Army in October of 1991. He served as a parachute rigger at the U.S.
Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center at Fort Bragg, N.C. He attended the Warrant Officer Basic
Course at Fort Rucker, AL. In 1996 he was assigned to Camp Wheeler, HI. He assessed for the 160th Special
Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) in 1998 and was assigned to the 3rd Battalion 160th SOAR(A) at
Hunter Army Air Field, GA as an MH-47D Chinook pilot.

Goodnature’s military schools include:

      Electronic Warfare Officers Course
      CH-47D Aircraft Qualification Course
      Air Assault Course
      Survival Evade Resist Escape Course
      CH-47D Instructor Pilot Course

His awards and decorations include:

      The Air Medal
      Senior Army Aviator Badge
      Army Commendation Medal
      Army Achievement Medal
      Army Good Conduct Medal
      National Defense Service Medal
      Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
      Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
      Korean Defense Service Medal
      Afghanistan Campaign Medal
      Iraq Campaign Medal
      Overseas Service Ribbon

He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Bronze Star Medal and
an Air Medal with Valor device and the Combat Action Badge.

He is survived by his wife Lori of Savannah, GA; and two sons, Shea and Brennan, of Naples, Italy; his
parents Don & Debbie Goodnature of Clarks Grove, MN; and sister Amy Purdy (Ben) of Alden, MN.




               Sgt. Bryan J. Opskar
                Hometown: Princeton, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 32 years old


                Died: July 23, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Marines, 2nd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, 2nd Marine Expeditionary
                Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.


                Incident: Killed when his vehicle was struck by a makeshift bomb while conducting combat operations near
                Rutbah.


On Bryan J. Opskar's wedding day, his bride-to-be went to their condo a few hours before the ceremony and found
her groom crying. "He didn''t cry often, so I knew something was up," recalled Leandra Opskar. She asked him what
was the matter. He replied that he was just so overwhelmed and overjoyed that he was marrying her. They
embraced. "It was the best 15 minutes ever," she said. Bryan Opskar, 32, of Princeton, Minn., was killed July 23 when
his vehicle was struck by an explosive in Rutbah. He was based at Camp Lejeune. He graduated high school in 1991
and played junior hockey for two years before attending Concordia College, where he joined the hockey team for two
seasons. Opskar was engaged last Thanksgiving and married on New Year's Eve. He and Leandra knew each other for
12 years after working together at a local grocery store. "He had me at paper or plastic," Leandra said. Opskar was an
avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt, fish and golf, family members said. He owned two Harley-Davidson
motorcycles, his wife said. "I think what I'll miss most about him are his smile and his giggle," Leandra said.

Bryan Opskar




Iraq war claims Minnesota Marine
Roadside bomb kills newly married Princeton native, 32

When Bryan Opskar married his high school sweetheart last New Year's Eve after a storybook romantic reunion,
everybody in the church knew that Leandra Dougherty was marrying a Marine.

"You knew this guy was in some kind of disciplined lifestyle," recalled Bret Triplett, who coaches high school hockey
in Princeton, Minn., 50 miles north of the Twin Cities.

Opskar and his younger brother, Chris, had been hockey stars at Princeton High School, and their parents, Earl and
Betty Opskar, spent their working lives there as a shop teacher and a school secretary.

"It was his mannerisms and his behavior that impressed you," Triplett said of watching the 32-year-old Marine at his
wedding. "He had a lot of respect for himself and for others."
The Opskars took a short honeymoon before Bryan Opskar shipped out for Iraq to continue his second tour. The
couple lived in Moorhead, Minn., and Leandra had a teaching job in Fargo, N.D., but was planning to move to North
Carolina to be with her husband when he returned home, Triplett said.

Sgt. Bryan James Opskar was killed Saturday when an improvised explosive device struck his vehicle near Ar Rutbah in
Iraq, the Defense Department reported. No other official details were provided about the roadside bomb, but Triplett
said Earl Opskar told him that his son was hit in the head by a piece of shrapnel and likely died instantly.

Including Opskar, 22 Minnesota members of the military have died in Iraq since 2003.

Opskar, who was born in Princeton and graduated in 1991, ran into Leandra, a former high school girlfriend, when he
got a short leave last fall to attend his brother's wedding.

"The story goes that they stayed up all night talking and then Bryan had to report back to duty," said Triplett, who is a
close friend of the family. "He got another leave around Christmas, came home and proposed, and they were
married within five days."

The two knew each other after working together at a grocery store. "He had me at paper or plastic," Leandra Opskar
told the Associated Press.

"We only had seven months together," she said of their marriage. "I wouldn't trade those seven months for
anything."

Family members spent Monday going through pictures and reliving memories. They brought out a display of family
photos that was put together for the wedding.

On Saturday, the day Opskar was killed, he phoned home to talk to his wife. She missed the call, and he left a
message.

"He said he couldn't wait to get home and he would talk to me later," Leandra Opskar said.

Opskar also played on the Princeton varsity football team. One of his football coaches, Doug Patnode, remembered
Opskar as an intense competitor who was "a real friendly guy" — but only off the field and the ice.

"Bryan was always motivated, really committed, and focused on whatever he was doing," Patnode said. "I'm sure he
brought that to the Marine Corps. I spoke to him last summer after his dad retired and he was helping him move out
his things. To me, he just seemed Marine through and through."

After graduating from high school, Opskar played junior league hockey for several years before attending Concordia
College in Moorhead, where he played as a defenseman on the Cobber hockey team during the 1993 and 1994
seasons.

"He was a disciplined, hard-working young man who had a great attitude and was well liked by his teammates," said
Steve Baumgartner, hockey coach at Concordia.

"We knew that he was going to be a Marine, because he talked about it a lot," Baumgartner said. "He kept saying,
'This is what I want to do.' "

Opskar left Concordia after his sophomore year and enlisted in the Marines in 1998. He eventually re-enlisted and
commanded a light armament vehicle with the 2nd Marine Division out of Camp Lejeune, N.C.

"He loved being a Marine," his mother, Betty, told the AP.

Triplett said the family has been told Opskar's body will be returned to the United States this week. A funeral is
planned at Trinity Lutheran Church in Moorhead and a memorial service will be in Princeton.

"It's a hard thing," Triplett said. "He was a good guy, always looking to help out. He was just a good one."

Published in Pioneer Press on July 26, 2005


Bryan J. Opskar

Opskar Bryan J., age 32, US Marine Corps, killed in action in Iraq on July 23, 2005. Survived by wife, Leandra; parents,
Erling and Betty, and brother, Christopher (Rebecca). Services will held on Tuesday in Moorhead, MN and on
Thursday at 10:30 AM in Immanuel Luth. Church, Princeton, MN. Arr. by Korsmo Funeral Service, Moorhead.

Published in Star Tribune on July 29, 2005



Marine Sgt. Bryan J. Opskar
Died July 23, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


32, of Princeton, Minn.; assigned to the 2nd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd Marine
Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; killed July 23 when his vehicle was
struck by an improvised explosive device while he was conducting combat operations near
Rutbah, Iraq.
Marine killed while on patrol in Iraq

By Dave Kolpack

Associated Press

FARGO, N.D.— Friends and family of Sgt. Bryan Opskar say the North Carolina-based Marine
from Moorhead, Minn., lived life at a fast pace. He liked to ride motorcycles in the summer and
snowmobiles in the winter.

―He liked action,‖ said Opskar‘s younger brother, Chris. ―He was always the guy to keep the party
going.‖

Opskar, 32, a native of Princeton, Minn., was killed in Iraq on Saturday when a roadside bomb
exploded. A military spokesman said he was conducting combat operations near Rutbah, Iraq.

―It‘s a pretty down day in Princeton,‖ said Susan Bartholomew, a longtime family friend.

Opskar was engaged last Thanksgiving and married on New Year‘s Eve to Leandra Dougherty of
Fargo. The two of them had known each other for 12 years after working together at a local
grocery store.

―He had me at paper or plastic,‖ Leandra said.

―We only had seven months together,‖ she said of their marriage. ―I wouldn‘t trade those seven
months for anything.‖

Family members spent Monday going through pictures and reliving memories. They brought out a
display of family photos that was put together for the wedding.

―He would hate this, by the way,‖ Leandra said, pointing out pictures.

Opskar, a member of the 2nd Marine Division from Camp Lejeune, N.C., enlisted in the Marines in
1998. He joined his unit in March 2004 as a commander on a light armored vehicle. The unit
patrolled major supply routes looking for explosives.

Opskar phoned home earlier that day to talk to his wife, but she missed the call. He left a
message.

―He said he couldn‘t wait to get home and he would talk to me later,‖ Leandra said.

Opskar received more than a dozen military awards, including the combat action ribbon and two
good conduct medals, a military spokesman said. He also was selected for a special Army training
class as a master gunner.

―He loved being a Marine,‖ said his mother, Betty.

Opskar was an avid outdoorsman who loved to hunt, fish and golf, family members said. He owned
two Harley-Davidson motorcycles, his wife said.

―I think what I‘ll miss most about him are his smile and his giggle,‖ Leandra said.

Opskar was born Feb. 14, 1973, in Princeton. ―He was my Valentine,‖ Betty said. He started
playing hockey when he was in first grade, a passion he would continue into college.

He graduated from Princeton High School in 1991. He participated in junior hockey for two years
before joining Concordia‘s team in 1993, playing for two seasons.

Concordia head coach Steve Baumgartner called Opskar an overachiever who led by example.

―He had a good work ethic and good discipline,‖ the coach said. ―His attitude really stood out. He
was well-respected by his teammates.‖

He often talked to his teammates and coaches about joining the military, Baumgartner said.

―He wanted to serve his country,‖ Baumgartner said. ―A lot of our players knew that‘s what he was
going to pursue. I remember that he was very committed about doing that.‖
Opskar is the 24th Minnesotan to die in the Iraq war. He died instantly of a shrapnel wound, his
mother said.

―It was just a matter of time before this hit closer to home than it has so far,‖ Cook said on Monday.

―You‘re not supposed to lose your child,‖ said Opskar‘s father, Erling. ―It‘s tough.‖

Protesters, mourners, gather at service for Marine

PRINCETON, Minn. — The extra folding chairs weren‘t enough to hold the overflow crowd at
Immanuel Lutheran Church, where about 400 people turned out Thursday for a memorial service
for a Marine killed in Iraq.

Sgt. Bryan Opskar, 32, died July 23 when a roadside bomb exploded. He was the 24th Minnesotan
to die in the Mideast during the Iraq war. He grew up and played hockey in Princeton, and most
recently lived in Moorhead.

American flags, passed out as people entered the church, rippled in the crowd. Every seat was
filled and people stood against the back wall. A pair of Marines stood near Opskar‘s parents, Betty
and Erling.

A display in the church recalled Bryan Opskar‘s youth, his marriage and his years in the Marines.

Diann Bellmont of Cold Spring, the mother of a Marine, described the service as simple. ―He lived
life the way he wanted to, as a Marine, strong, courageous and faithful,‖ she said.

Before the service, nine picketers from the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan., picketed
across the street. The group, including children as young as 10, wore T-shirts and displayed signs
with anti-American and anti-gay messages.

Westboro member Fred Phelps said the church believes the war and the deaths of U.S. troops are
God‘s punishment for a nation too accepting of gays.

―This is God‘s punishment of this nation, mocking what the Bible says about this vile issue,‖ Phelps
said.

Officers from the Princeton Police Department and the Minnesota State Patrol separated the
picketers from those attending the service.

A funeral service for Opskar was held Tuesday in Moorhead. – Associated Press




Sgt. 1st Class Michael A. Benson




                Hometown: Winona, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 40 years old


                Died: August 10, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 1st Battalion, 314th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 78th Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.


                Incident: Died of injuries received Aug. 2 when a makeshift bomb struck his convoy in Baghdad.


During his two decades in the Army, Michael A. Benson would often come home and tell stories about traveling all
over the world. Few of those locations were vacations. "He used to rattle off a long list of names of places and then
we would realize those were all places where bad things were happening," said his mother, Norma Benson. Benson,
40, of Winona, Minn., died Aug. 10 at a Maryland hospital of injuries he sustained Aug. 2 in Baghdad when a bomb
struck his convoy. He was based at Fort Drum. Benson graduated high school in 1983 and joined the Army two years
later, hoping to make a career out of it. He earned a host of decorations, including the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.
Over his Army career, Benson mastered the intricacies of infantry weapons, the life of a paratrooper and he served
for years as an Army recruiter. His ex-wife, Robyn Benson, said Michael was "super smart" and routinely aced any
exam the military required him to take. He also liked to cook and do creative writing. "There wasn't anything he
couldn't do," she said. He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth.


Michael A. Benson
Friday, August 12 2005 @ 08:08 AM MDT




St Paul Pioneer Press -- Despite attempts to save his life at two military hospitals, a Winona,
Minn., native severely wounded in a suicide bombing in Iraq last week died Wednesday.




Army Sgt. 1st Class Michael A. Benson, 40, was taken off life support after doctors told family members he
wouldn't recover from his brain injury, according to family members.

Benson was a 19-year veteran of the Army and was part of the 1st Battalion, 314th Regiment stationed at
Fort Drum, N.Y. His unit arrived in Iraq in March with a mission to help train members of the country's
police force.

Brother David Benson, who still lives in Winona, said the family was despondent over the death and
wouldn't comment.

"We've decided that we didn't want to speak on this at this time," he said. "I don't think there's anybody
who really wants to do it."

Michael Benson was a highly decorated soldier; his awards included a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart. He
is the 23rd Minnesota soldier to die in Iraq during the war. And while outstate Minnesota accounts for 47
percent of the state's population, it accounts for 74 percent of those deaths.

Officials at Fort Drum said Benson was wounded Aug. 2 while riding in the gunner's turret of a Humvee
that was the second vehicle in a three-vehicle convoy going through Baghdad. The unit was attacked by a
suicide bomber driving a car that was carrying an improvised explosive device.

Fort Drum spokesman Ben Abel said all three vehicles were damaged, and the soldiers were targeted by
small arms fire. He said he wasn't sure how many others were wounded.

In an article that appeared in the Winona Daily News on Wednesday, written before the family was
notified of Benson's death, the soldier's mother said the Army had told her few details of the attack.

Benson suffered severe head injuries and was first treated at a military hospital in Germany, then flown to
the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

"The doctor called and said there's no way he's going to survive this brain injury," Norma Benson told the
Daily News. "It's all machines keeping him alive now."

Michael Benson's family, including his wife, Elizabeth, of Colchester, Vt., decided to have life support
disconnected.

Michael Benson graduated from Winona Senior High School in 1983 and enlisted in the Army in December
1985. Throughout his military career, he was stationed in Hawaii, North Carolina, New York and Italy. He
also served in the first Gulf War, Operation Desert Storm, where he helped clear minefields in northern
Iraq.

Norma Benson told the Daily News that her son's stories of his experiences were often enough to frighten
her.

"I guess I have been dreading it for 18 years," she said of her son's injury. "He's been in other war
situations and he'd tell you about it afterward and you'd sit there with eyes wide open. We'd hear about
war in other situations and wonder if he was there."



                Pfc. Elden D. Arcand




                Hometown: White Bear Lake, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 22 years old


                Died: August 21, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 360th Transportation Company, 68th Corps Support Battalion, 43rd Area Support Group, Fort
                Carson, Colo.


                Incident: Died when his tractor pulling a 7,500-gallon tanker accidentally rolled over in Mosul.


Through her grief, Elden D. Arcand's mother won't focus on losing him at such a young age or turn her life over to
grief. After all, her son is likely "bouncing off the walls" of heaven. "I thanked God for Elden's life, for giving him to me
as a son," said Kelly Freudenberg. "I thanked him for his death." Arcand, 22, of White Bear Lake, Minn., died Aug. 21
when his vehicle rolled over in Mosul. A 2001 high school graduate, he was based at Fort Carson. Pastor Mike
Haseltine noted that Arcand was named for a great-uncle who died during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II and
who, like Arcand, died one month shy of his 23rd birthday. Kim Hetzer, a cousin, described Arcand as a young man
who loved sports and the outdoors. "He loved to be outside," she said. "He loved dogs." Arcand requested the
assignment in Iraq, and had passed on a chance to come home on leave in September or October, preferring to bank
his time for a later leave. "Mom, I want to make a difference in this world," his mother recalled him telling her.
Arcand also is survived by his father, David Arcand.




Crash in Mosul kills Minnesota soldier
by Dan Olson, Minnesota Public Radio
August 24, 2005
Pfc. Elden D. Arcand, 22, of White Bear Lake was killed Sunday in Mosul, a city in northern Iraq. (Courtesy of Kelly
Freudenberg)
The mother of Elden Arcand says he enlisted in the Army so others wouldn't have to serve. His Forest Lake family
learned Monday the 22-year old Army Private First Class was killed in Iraq. He is the 26th Minnesotan to die as a
result of injuries sustained in the war.

Forest Lake, Minn. — Kelly Freudenberg says her son enlisted in the Army soon after graduating from Forest Lake
High School and was considering re-enlisting. She says he wanted to be assigned to Iraq so that others wouldn't have
to serve.

"He said, 'Mom, if I join and I go over there that means someone else gets to come home and be with their family.'
He just had great heart," she says.

The Defense Department says Elden Arcand's fuel supply truck overturned on a road Sunday night in the northern
Iraq city of Mosul. Officials say he was thrown from the vehicle, and it rolled onto him. Another soldier, 38-year old
Staff Sgt. Brian Morris of Centreville, Michigan also died in the crash.

Freudenberg says her son told her the American troops have the support of the people he saw on his missions.

"He was very proud to be over there. He believed in what he was doing, and I do know he said this to me. The Iraqi
people, one of the missions he was going on, all the people, the kids were standing alongside the road as they were
going by and they all were smiling at them and waving at them and they were happy they were there. And they love
our troops being over there, and their greatest concern is that our troops are going to leave," she says.

A growing number of mothers of U. S. military personnel killed in Iraq are protesting this country's continued
involvement. Freudenberg says she won't be joining them even though she says she understands their feelings.

"You know, my reaction is one of compassion and love and sympathy with them. It hurts. We've lost our babies.
Irreplaceable. These women are hurting. This is their way of showing their hurt. I can't speak against them. I'm not
going to join them in that manner because I do believe in the war, I do support President Bush, but I hurt for them, I
pray for them, they need our prayers, they're hurting mothers," she says.




                Spec. Jacob T. Vanderbosch




                Hometown: Vadnais Heights, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 21 years old


                Died: October 3, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Army, 3rd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.
                Incident: Killed when a makeshift bomb exploded near his Humvee during combat operations in Haqlaniyah.


After Jacob T. Vanderbosch got his two front teeth knocked out during a wrestling match, he used to wiggle his
temporary teeth just to make people laugh. "He had this sneaky smile," said his aunt, Lee Ann Charest. "Jake never
had any fear and that was what I was always afraid of." Vanderbosch, 21, of Vadnais Heights, Minn., was killed Oct. 3
by a roadside bomb in Haqlaniyah. He was assigned to Fort Bragg. Vanderbosch was a 2002 high school graduate
with a love of water-skiing, golf, Texas Hold 'Em and deer hunting. He sometimes slept in his deer stand, his father
said. "I'd call over to him in his stand, 'Wake up!'" He'd say he wasn't sleeping. I'd say, 'I can hear you snoring from
here.'" A classmate, Nick Lagos, said Vanderbosch became his best friend when the two entered the ninth grade. "I
wasn't the most popular kid, but it didn't matter to him at all," said Lagos. "He was probably the most outgoing
person I've ever known. He would never exclude anybody from anything." He is survived by his parents, Mary and
Scott. "He gave us some gray hairs, but he was maturing so much," said Scott

Jacob T. Vanderbosch


                  Vanderbosch, Jacob T.
                  Beloved Son, Brother
                  Grandson, Nephew & Friend

                    Age 21, of Vadnais Heights, U.S. Army-82nd Airborne. Preceded in death by grandparents, Harry &
                    Mary Kopesky; great-grandmother, Gertrude Stewart. Survived by parents, Mary Ann and Scott;
brothers, Joe and Ryan; sister, Jennie; grandparents, Donald and Marlene Vanderbosch; god-parents, Neil
Vanderbosch and Julie Vanderbosch; aunts, uncles, cousins and many friends. 2002 graduate of WBL High School.
Service Thursday, 11AM at ST. MARK'S EV. LUTHERAN CHURCH, 2499 No. Helen St., No. St. Paul. Interment Forest
Lawn Memorial Gardens. Visitation Wednesday, 4-8PM at SANDBERGS FUNERAL HOME, 2593 E. 7th Ave. at Charles
St., No. St. Paul, and 1 hour before service Thursday at church. Memorials preferred to the Vanderbosch's home
church, Lakeview Lutheran, Maplewood.
"Jake" you are a hero, and loved by all."
Sandberg Family F.H. 651-777-2600


             Published in Pioneer Press on October 11, 2005


Army Spc. Jacob T. Vanderbosch
Died October 03, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


21, of Vadnais Heights, Minn.; assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment,
82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; killed Oct. 3 when an improvised explosive device
detonated near his Humvee during combat operations in Haqlaniyah, Iraq. Also killed were: Pfc.
Roberto C. Baez and Sgt. Bryan W. Large.

*****

Paratrooper ‗never had any fear‘

Associated Press

VADNAIS HEIGHTS, Minn. — Lee Ann Charest remembers the toothless grin her nephew, Spc.
Jacob Vanderbosch, wore for a time after he knocked his two front teeth out during a wrestling
match. After he got his temporary teeth, he used to wiggle them just to make people laugh.

―He had this sneaky smile,‖ Charest said. ―Jake never had any fear and that was what I was
always afraid of.‖

Vanderbosch, 21, was among three soldiers killed Monday when a bomb exploded in Haqlaniyah,
Iraq, near the Humvee he was riding in. He had called home to talk to his parents early that
morning before leaving on what would have been a 22-day mission, his parents said.

Mary and Scott Vanderbosch said they will always remember their son‘s bravery. He had only
been in Iraq for a few weeks when he was killed.

―His dad asked him once what he was afraid of,‖ Mary said. ―He was fearless.‖
The other soldiers killed were Sgt. Bryan W. Large, 31, of Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, and Pfc. Roberto
C. Baez, 19, of Tampa, Fla. They were all assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry
Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.




                Master Sgt. Brett E. Angus




                Hometown: St. Paul, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 40 years old


                Died: November 26, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Marines, Marine Wing Support Squadron-372, Marine Wing Support Group-37, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, 1st
                Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.


                Incident: Killed by a makeshift bomb while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in the vicinity of
                Camp Taqaddum.


Brett E. Angus was perhaps called to be a Marine. With his father and his uncle both in the military, he grew up
surrounded by family members who wanted to serve their country. "He believed strongly in duty and honor. He was
a lifelong Marine. That was his life," said his uncle, David Angus. Angus, 40, of St. Paul, Minn., died Nov. 26 when a
bomb exploded near Camp Taqaddum while he was on a combat mission. He was assigned to Camp Pendleton. His
uncle said Angus was scheduled to get out of the service after 20 years, but the military offered him a bonus and
promotion to master sergeant if he stayed in. "He expressed no qualms about going. He felt that this was his job,"
said David Angus. He loved to travel and was able to see the world with the Marines. He also was an off-road
enthusiast who enjoyed excursions in his Toyota Land Cruiser. The soldier's father, Russell Angus, said he and his son
were "quite affectionate" toward each other, but that they weren't close. "I was kind of hoping he'd retire soon so he
and I could get to know each other better," he said. He also is survived by his wife, Masami.


Angus, Master Sergeant Brett E., USMC

                  On November 26, 2005 - Age 40

                  While on active duty in Iraq

                   Brett was preceded in death by his mother, Cheryl Kari. He will be sadly missed by his beloved wife,
                   Masami; sister, JoLynn Kari (Chris Alex-ander); father, Russell; step-father, Terry Kari; grandfather,
                   Dale "Grampy" Peterson; grandparents, Vera and Earl Christy; and loving aunts, uncles, cousins and
        friends. Memorial service 10:30 AM Friday, December 2 at J.S. KLECATSKY & SONS FUNERAL HOME, 1580
        Century Pt. (Yankee Doodle Rd. @ Coachman), Eagan. Gathering of family and friends 1 hour prior to the
        service at the funeral home. Memorials preferred to the American Cancer Society, 2520 Pilot Knob Rd. Suite
        150, Mendota Heights, MN 55120.
Marine Master Sgt. Brett E. Angus
Died November 26, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


40, of St. Paul, Minn.; assigned to Marine Wing Support Squadron-372, Marine Wing Support
Group-37, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.;
attached to 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, II Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward); killed Nov. 26 by an
improvised explosive device while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in the
vicinity of Camp Taqaddum, Iraq.

Slain Marine followed in his family‘s footsteps

By Elizabeth Dunbar

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — Master Sgt. Brett E. Angus was perhaps called to be a Marine. With his father
and his uncle both in the military, he grew up surrounded by family members who wanted to serve
their country.

He loved to travel and was able to see the world with the Marines. He even met his wife while
working in Japan. Angus had been in Iraq for less than a year before he was killed Saturday by an
improvised explosive device.

―He expressed no qualms about going. He felt that this was his job,‖ said his uncle, David Angus.
―We were very proud of him. ... Our family supported him in his decision.‖

Angus, 40, died while conducting combat operations near Camp Taqaddum, Iraq, Department of
Defense officials announced Monday. He is the 28th Minnesotan to die as a result of injuries
sustained in the Mideast during the Iraq war.

A Marine spokeswoman said no other information was immediately available, but earlier reports
said a Marine died when his vehicle struck a roadside bomb.

Angus grew up in St. Paul and joined the Marines after high school, said David Angus. He was a
career Marine based at Camp Pendleton, Calif., and lived near there with his wife, his uncle said.

During the war, Angus was connected to the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing.

―That was his calling in life,‖ said David Angus, a Vietnam-era veteran. Brett Angus‘ father, Russell,
was drafted and served in Vietnam, David Angus said.

―The whole family has a sense of duty when it comes to our service in the country and that‘s
(Brett),‖ David Angus said.

David Angus said his nephew visited Minnesota before heading to Iraq. He said his nephew
wanted to do what was asked of him, even though some family members disagreed with the war.

In addition to traveling, Brett Angus enjoyed driving his Toyota Land Cruiser off road, his uncle
said. Garie Chavez, operator of a Web site devoted to Land Cruisers, said Angus had recently
contacted him about a part for his vehicle.

Chavez was selling T-shirts in honor of Angus and was taking donations for the family. As of
Monday evening, Chavez estimated he had collected about $300 in donations, excluding T-shirt
sales.


Master Sgt Brett Evan Angus

December 21st, 2009
Born: August 30, 1965
Died: November 26, 2005 in Al Anbar, Iraq


Master Sgt. Brett E. Angus of St. Paul, Minnesota grew up in St. Paul surrounded by family
members who wanted to serve their country. His father and his uncle had served in the
military and it was no surprise that Brett would have a strong belief in duty and honor. The
Marines became his life when he joined after high school. After serving 20 years in the
military, Brett was scheduled to get out of the service, but the military offered him a bonus
and promotion to master sergeant if he stayed in. He expressed no qualms about going to war
and felt that this was his job. He loved to travel and was able to see the world. He also was
an off-road enthusiast who enjoyed excursions in his Toyota Land Cruiser. Brett was preceded
in death by his mother, Cheryl Kari. He is survived by his wife, Masami, sister, JoLynn, father,
Russell; step-father, Terry Kari, grandfather, Dale “Grampy” Peterson, and grandparents,
Vera and Earl Christy. He died at age 40 from an improvised explosive device while
conducting combat operations against enemy forces in the vicinity of Camp Taqaddum, Iraq.


Marines
Marine Wing Support Squadron-372
Marine Wing Support Group-37
3rd Marine Aircraft Wing
I Marine Expeditionary Force
Camp Pendleton, California


Burial information is unknown at this time




             Cpl. Anthony T. McElveen




             Hometown: Little Falls, Minnesota, U.S.


             Age: 20 years old


             Died: December 1, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


             Unit: Marines, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force,
             Twentynine Palms, Calif.
                Incident: Killed by a makeshift bomb while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah.


Anthony T. McElveen was always welcome when he returned to his high school. "I was always happy to have him
come back and talk to us because he really was a fantastic man," said Randy Tabatt, who was McElveen''s social
studies teacher. "He was friends with everybody that met him." McElveen, 20, of Little Falls, Minn., was killed Dec. 1
by an explosive in Fallujah. He was a 2003 high school graduate and was assigned to Twentynine Palms. While in high
school, McElveen played hockey, was active in martial arts and played alto saxophone in ninth to 12th grades,
performing in the marching band and wind ensemble. "He seemed to be the type of person who could take negative
stuff and turn it into a positive," said hockey coach Tony Couture. In February, he married a woman with whom he
had much in common. Carrie Cluka also was a goalie at the high school and is building a career in the military.
"Anthony was one of those individuals that knew what responsibility and duty was, and that living in this country
meant having a sense of duty and responsibility, and he obviously took that to the nth degree," Tabatt said.

Marine Cpl. Anthony T. McElveen
Died December 01, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


20, of Little Falls, Minn.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I
Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif.; attached to 2nd Marine Division, II Marine
Expeditionary Force (Forward); killed Dec. 1 by an improvised explosive device while conducting
combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah, Iraq. Also killed were Staff Sgt. Daniel J. Clay,
Lance Cpl. John M. Holmason, Lance Cpl. David A. Huhn, Lance Cpl. Adam W. Kaiser, Lance Cpl.
Robert A. Martinez, Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen, Lance Cpl. Andrew G. Patten, Sgt. Andy A.
Stevens, and Lance Cpl. Craig N. Watson.

Marine killed in Iraq to be honored in Little Falls

The Associated Press

LITTLE FALLS, Minn. — Friends and family will gather Dec. 11 and 12 to remember a Minnesota
Marine who was killed last week in Iraq.

A wake for Cpl. Anthony McElveen was planned for Dec. 11 at Shelley Funeral Chapel in Little
Falls. McElveen‘s funeral will be held at 10 a.m. Dec. 12 at the Camp Ripley Funeral Chapel.

McElveen‘s parents have invited the public to both services.

McElveen and nine other Marines died Dec. 1 when an explosion was set off as the troops were
leaving a promotion ceremony in an abandoned flour mill.

McElveen, 20, had been assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Division, based at Twentynine
Palms, Calif. He was attached to the 2nd Marine Division from Camp Lejeune, N.C., when he died.

Wake held for Minnesota Marine

The Associated Press

LITTLE FALLS, Minn. — Relatives and friends gathered Dec. 11 to remember Cpl. Anthony
McElveen of Little Falls, one of 10 Marines who died Dec. 1 in a roadside bomb attack in Iraq.

―He was quiet in class, but well-known throughout the school,‖ said Nicole Olson, of Brainerd, who
had known him since third grade. There were many Tonys in school, Olson said, but he was known
by the nickname ―Ant.‖

McElveen, 21, was the one who wanted to make people feel comfortable, she told the St. Cloud
Times. In middle school, she said, he would play matchmaker, trying to set people up. He was
always smiling and had a gentle and polite demeanor, she said.

Olson graduated with McElveen from Little Falls High School in 2003. She stood with several other
classmates outside of the Shelley Funeral Chapel around cars with ―R.I.P. Anthony‖ tributes on
their windows.

Keri Pitman, of Little Falls, was in ninth grade when McElveen was a senior. He was a great friend
and had many friends, she said.

McElveen‘s death did not shake her plan to join the National Guard, she said.
―I think this makes me stronger — knowing what I have to look forward to, what are the things that
could happen,‖ she said.

Many of McElveen‘s teachers and school advisers said he was emboldened by his decision to join
the Marines.

―He was so proud when he told me he was going to join the Marines,‖ said Mary Larson, a teacher
at Little Falls High School.

McElveen‘s funeral is scheduled for Dec. 12 at the Camp Ripley Chapel.

Killed in the same attack near Fallujah was Lance Cpl. Scott Modeen, 24, of New Hope. His
funeral was scheduled for Dec. 12 at Sacred Heart Church in Robbinsdale.

Cpl. Anthony T. McElveen, LittleFalls, Minn.

McElveen graduated from Little Falls High School in Collegeville, Minn., the school he returned to in June
to see his little sister graduate, according to a Minnesota Public Radio story.

McElveen‟s high school social studies teacher, Randy Tabatt, told MPR that McElveen was “a hardworking
and dedicated student who loved to talk about politics,” and who knew his wanted to be a Marine by the time
he was a junior.

He also loved music, playing saxophone in his high school band for four years, his former teacher said.

When McElveen, 20, came back to visit his alma mater last year, he wore his Marine uniform.

“When he came through the hallways people were in awe of him,” Tabatt told the radio program. “When he
came into the classroom and spoke the students were very respectful of what he had to say.”

McElveen, who was on his second tour in Iraq, was married in February. His wife, another native of Little
Falls, serves in the U.S. Navy, MPR said.



                 Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen




                 Hometown: Hennepin, Minnesota, U.S.


                 Age: 24 years old


                 Died: December 1, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                 Unit: Marines, 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force,
                 Twentynine Palms, Calif.


                 Incident: Killed by a makeshift bomb while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah.


Before Scott T. Modeen returned to Iraq for another tour, he and his buddy, Chris Hayne, went to their favorite bar and
made a promise to each other. "He reached into his pocket and pulled out a $20 bill. And he ripped it carefully and
clean right down the middle. He signed half of that bill and gave me the other half, and I signed it and wrote him a
little letter on it. I told him not to read it until he got to the sands of the desert," said Hayne. "He gave me the other half
and he said, ''When I get back, and I promise I'm gonna come back, we're going to tape this back together and we're
having shots with it right here.''" Modeen, 24, of Hennepin, Minn., was killed Dec. 1 by an explosive in Fallujah. He
was assigned to Twentynine Palms. Modeen, a 2000 high school graduate, asked frequently for letters, Vikings scores
and care packages with Oreos and Snickers bars. "If he was needed in any situation, any situation at all, he was always
the first to react, to be there, and try to help someone out," said Hayne. Modeen is survived by his parents, John and
Kimberly.

Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen
Modeen enlisted after the Sept. 11 attacks, and was on his second tour of Iraq, according to The New York
Daily News.

The 24-year-old Marine came from a large family, including nine brothers and sisters and 26 aunts and
uncles.

Within two days of the announcement of his death, friends, family and strangers had filled 17 pages of an
Internet guestbook, www.legacy.com, with condolences and memories — including of the Perkins
Restaurant where his mother also worked; and the time the young Marine had friends in stitches by chasing a
household mouse with a three-iron.

“Scott had the biggest heart of anyone I‟ve ever known,” wrote Jill Day, a friend.

Modeen‟s uncle and aunt, Marcie and Ed Robichaud, wrote, “Those people [who fought in World War II]
would in our lifetime be called the „Greatest Generation.‟

“We believe Scott‟s sacrifice is no less great than that of these past heroes and patriots, and he will stand
beside them in what we believe is eternal life.”

Scott T. Modeen


                     Modeen, Scott T. LCpl. USMC F. Co. 2/7 age 24, of Robbinsdale. Bravely died serving his country
                     in Iraq on December 1, 2005. Survived by his "pops" John (Georgie) Modeen of Inver Grove
                     Heights; mother, Kimberly (Tom Knopik) Modeen of Blaine, and loving sister, Nicole (Sam) Fedo
                     of Forest Lake. Also survived by 3 step-brothers and 3 step-sisters; godparents, Jerry & Bonnie
                     Modeen of Bloomington and many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends. Mass of Christian Burial
                     10 AM Monday at The Church of the Sacred Heart, Robbinsdale. Interment with full military
                     honors at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery. Visitation Sunday, 4-8 PM, with 7 PM prayer service
at Gearty-Delmore Robbinsdale Chapel, 3888 West Broadway. Your memory and sacrifice will not be forgotten.
"Semper Fi" Gearty-Delmore 763-537-4511



                  Published in Star Tribune from December 9 to December 11, 2005


Marine Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen
Died December 01, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


24, of Hennepin, Minn.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I
Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif.; attached to 2nd Marine Division, II Marine
Expeditionary Force (Forward); killed Dec. 1 by an improvised explosive device while conducting
combat operations against enemy forces in Fallujah, Iraq. Also killed were Staff Sgt. Daniel J. Clay,
Lance Cpl. John M. Holmason, Lance Cpl. David A. Huhn, Lance Cpl. Adam W. Kaiser, Lance Cpl.
Robert A. Martinez, Cpl. Anthony T. McElveen, Lance Cpl. Andrew G. Patten, Sgt. Andy A.
Stevens, and Lance Cpl. Craig N. Watson.
Thursday, December 01, 2005

Marine Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen
Remember Our Heroes
Marine Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen, 24, of Hennepin, Minn.
Lance Cpl Modeen was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine
Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif.; attached to 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary
Force (Forward); killed Dec. 1 by an improvised explosive device while conducting combat operations
against enemy forces in Fallujah, Iraq.


Modeen, a 24-year-old lance corporal, joined the Marines after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and
was in his second tour of duty in Iraq.


"Scott was the kind of person who could make you laugh whenever you were around him," said a
statement from his family. "After 9/11, he joined the Marines and was proud to be defending our
freedom. He was proud to be a Marine."


by Sue Webber - Sun Newspapers


A memorial billboard tribute to Lance Cpl. Scott Modeen, 24, of Robbinsdale, was unveiled Jan. 5 in
Crystal. Modeen was one of 10 Marines killed Dec. 1, 2005, in Iraq. (Bill Jones Sun Newspapers)


A month-long tribute to Lance Cpl. Scott Modeen of Robbinsdale was unveiled Jan. 5 in Crystal.


Modeen, 24, was one of 10 Marines killed Dec. 1, 2005, in Iraq. His funeral was Dec. 12 at The Church of
the Sacred Heart in Robbinsdale.


A memorial billboard designed by one of Modeen's friends was installed last week by Clear Channel
Outdoor, on the south side of 42nd Avenue North between Brunswick and Colorado avenues, facing east
above Keng's Chow Mein restaurant.


"We were approached by a friend of Scott Modeen's who asked us to do it," said Jeff Fuller, a
representative of Clear Channel Outdoor. "We felt it was something we wanted to get involved in."


Matt Guertin, a 1999 Cooper High School graduate and friend of Modeen's, came up with the idea and
designed the outdoor board.


"I'd known Scott since ninth grade," said Guertin, an entrepreneur who lives in Golden Valley and owns his
own painting company.


Guertin said he and other friends of Modeen's collaborated on the design idea following the Marine's
funeral. Guertin used his computer graphics skills to create the design and submitted it to Clear Channel
Outdoor for consideration.


Modeen's mother, Kim, said last week she was eagerly awaiting a chance to see the billboard.


In the meantime, she is savoring a last letter from her son that the mailman delivered to her home the
day of Scott's funeral Dec. 12.


"The envelope said, 'Don't open me until Christmas,'" Kim Modeen said.


She waited until Dec. 26 to open her son's letter, she said.


"It was the most grown up, beautiful letter," she said. "I just bawled and bawled. It was a 'Dear Mom'
letter. He told me how much he loved me, that I was in his heart all day, and that he couldn't wait for a
home-cooked meal.


"He said he had a job to do and he was doing it so others could enjoy the holidays with their families."


Her son's letter reminded her that the invisible bubble would keep him safe, said Kim Modeen, who plans
to frame her son's last letter.


Marine Lance Cpl. Scott T. Modeen was killed in action on 12/01/05.




                Staff Sgt. Kenneth B. Pospisil




                Hometown: Andover, Minnesota, U.S.


                Age: 35 years old


                Died: December 14, 2005 in Operation Iraqi Freedom.


                Unit: Marines, 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force,
                Camp Lejeune, N.C.


                Incident: Killed when a makeshift bomb exploded while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in
                the vicinity of Ar Ramadi.


Kenneth B. Pospisil's sister remembers her brother as always being fascinated by chemistry and explosives. "He was
building bombs at the age of 12 in our back yard," said Susan Bean. "It was something he loved to do." Pospisil, 35, of
Andover, Minn., was killed Dec. 14 by an explosive near Ramadi. He was assigned to Camp Lejeune. Pospisil, called
"Pops" by family and friends, was stationed in Hawaii for the past three years. He was sent to Iraq in September to
disarm roadside bombs. "The military and civilian personnel that worked with him had a great respect for him as a
Marine and a person," Dottie DeNard, whose husband, David DeNard, worked with Pospisil, wrote in an e-mail.
Pospisil graduated from high school in 1987. He enlisted in the Army shortly after graduation, but when told the
Army's explosive ordnance school was full, he was allowed to switch to the Marines. Pospisil's accomplishments have
inspired his niece to consider a life as a Marine. "He was who I wanted to be," said Kelsey Duque. "Kids always say
these comic book characters are their heroes, but he was mine."

Staff Sgt. Kenneth B. Pospisil




Minnesota marine killed during combat in Iraq

MINNEAPOLIS - A marine from Minnesota was killed in Iraq when a bomb exploded, the U.S. Department of Defense
announced Thursday.

Staff Sgt. Kenneth B. Pospisil, 35, of Andover, died Wednesday when an improvised explosive device went off while
he was involved in combat near Ar Ramadi. Pospisil was assigned to the 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine
Logistics Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force, based at Camp Lejeune, N.C. Pospisil is the 31st Minnesotan to die as
a result of injuries sustained in the Mideast during the Iraq war. Published in Pioneer Press on December 15, 2005

                       Kenneth "Blake" Pospisil

                       Pospisil, S.Sgt Kenneth "Blake" age 35, formerly of Anoka. Killed in action in Ar Ramadi, Iraq,
                       while serving his country during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Preceded in death by grandparents,
                       George & Frances Pospisil and Clayton & Marie Strouse. Survived by parents, Ken & Jeanne
                       Pospisil of Big Lake; sister, Susan & her husband Major Ed Bean of CA; niece, Kelsey Duque;
                       uncles & aunts, Jim (Celia) Strouse of NC, Mike (Sue) Strouse of TX; godmother, Joan (Norm)
                       Collins of Andover; cousins, other relatives, fellow Marines, and many friends. Funeral service
                       Friday, 11 AM at Mt. Olive Lutheran Church, 700 Western St., Anoka. Interment Forest Hill
Cemetery, Anoka. Visitation 5-8 PM Thursday at Thurston-Lindberg Funeral Home, W. Main St. & Branch Ave, Anoka.
In lieu of flowers, memorials please to the Marine Corps' Toys for Tots Program. Thurston-Lindberg Chapel 763-421-
0220

Marine Staff Sgt. Kenneth B. Pospisil
Died December 16, 2005 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom


35, of Andover, Minn.; assigned to the 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics
Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; killed Dec. 14 by an improvised
explosive device while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in the vicinity of
Ramadi, Iraq.

Minnesota man, longtime Marine, killed in Iraq

The Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS — Minnesota‘s latest casualty in Iraq was a man who loved the Marines, his
mother said Dec. 16.

Staff Sgt. Kenneth B. Pospisil, 35, of Andover, died Dec. 14 when a bomb when off near Al
Ramadi, the U.S. Department of Defense announced.

His mother, Jeanne Pospisil, said military officials told her her son was on his way to disarm the
bomb when it went off.

―He was trained very well in his job,‖ she said. ―He was very careful. He had all the gear on he was
supposed to have when this explosive device went off. We‘re just stunned.‖
Kenneth Pospisil ―loved the Marine Corps‖ and felt he belonged in Iraq, his mother said. ―It was his
whole life, his adult life. He loved his job, the guys he worked with. He was just a Marine.‖

Pospisil was assigned to the 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, II Marine
Expeditionary Force, based at Camp Lejeune, N.C. Jeanne Pospisil said she and her husband,
Ken, visited their only son at Camp Lejeune, where he was stationed before being deployed to Iraq
in September. It was his first tour in country.

Kenneth Pospisil — known as Blake — grew up in Anoka and attended Anoka High School before
joining the Army and getting his GED during basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. A year later,
he joined the Marines.

Pospisil was the 31st Minnesotan to die as a result of injuries sustained in the Middle East during
the Iraq war.

―We all expect our children to come home,‖ Jeanne Pospisil said. ―It‘s hard.‖

				
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