HONORING OUR ARMED FORCES -- (Senate - December 08, 2004)
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MICHIGAN'S FALLEN HEROES
Ms. STABENOW. Mr. President, I rise today to pay tribute to the brave men and women of the U.S. armed forces who have given their lives during the military operations in Iraq. Of the over 1,270 casualties to date in Operation Iraqi Freedom, 42 of these fallen heroes are from or have family in my home state of Michigan. My heartfelt sympathies go out to the families and friends of these great Americans. On behalf of the State of Michigan, I offer my deepest gratitude for the service, sacrifice, and commitment of these men and women in upholding the ideals of this Nation.
These men and women represent the finest of our citizens. They have revealed their unyielding courage, sense of duty, and patriotism. For this, their service to this Nation will never be forgotten.
I would like to honor the following men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces that have Michigan ties and have bravely made the ultimate sacrifice while serving in Iraq:
Army PVT Brandon Sloan, 19, of Bedford Heights, OH, was killed when his unit, the 507th Maintenance Co., was ambushed near Nasiriyah on March 23, 2003. Sloan's mother, Kimberly, lives in Fraser.
Marine MAJ Kevin Nave, 36, formerly of Oakland County's White Lake Township, was killed when he was run over by a military vehicle on March 26, 2003. Nave was a veteran of the 1991 Persian Gulf War and lived in Oceanside, CA. He is survived by his wife and two children.
Army SGT Todd James Robbins, 33, formerly of Pentwater, died after the Bradley fighting vehicle he manned with eight other soldiers was bombed on April 2, 2003, possibly by friendly fire. Robbins, a veteran of the first gulf war, was stationed at Fort Sill, OK. He is survived by a wife and a 13-year-old son.
Army SGT Michael Pedersen, 26, formerly of Flint, was one of six soldiers killed in the crash of an Army Black Hawk helicopter on April 2, 2003, during a fire fight in Iraq. He served as a helicopter crew chief with the Army's 3rd Infantry Division based in Fort Stewart, GA.
Army PFC Jason Meyer, 23, was killed on April 7, 2003, when his personnel carrier came under fire. He graduated from Howell High School in 1999 and joined the Army in 2001. Meyer was based in Fort Stewart, GA, and had celebrated his first wedding anniversary 2 weeks before his death.
Marine PFC Juan Garza, 20, of Temperance was killed by sniper fire on April 8, 2003. Garza graduated from Summerfield High School in 2002 and was married the day after Christmas.
Air Force SSGT Scott Sather, 29, of Clio was killed in action in Iraq on April 8, 2003. He was assigned to the 24th Special Tactics Squadron, based out of Pope Air Force Base, NC.
Army SPC Richard A. Goward, 32, of Midland was killed on April 14, 2003, when his truck entered a dust cloud and collided with another truck in Iraq. Goward was assigned to the Midland-based 1460th Transportation Company of the Michigan Army National Guard. The father of two daughters served on active duty with the Army from 1990 to 1996, then joined the Michigan Guard after the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Army SGT Sean Reynolds, 25, was killed on May 3, 2003, in an apparent accident involving his own weapon in northern Iraq. He grew up in Detroit and graduated from East Lansing High School in 1995. Reynolds was assigned to the Army's 173rd
Airborne Brigade, deployed near Kirkuk. The 173rd is based in Vicenza, Italy.
Army MSG William Lee Payne, 46, who joined the Army shortly after graduating from Otsego High School in 1975, died on May 16, 2003, in Haswah, Iraq. He was killed in an explosion. Payne was an intelligence officer for the 2nd Battalion, 70th Armor Regiment of the 3rd Brigade, 1st Armored Division.
Army SSG Brett J. Petriken, 30, of Flint, a military police officer, was one of two soldiers killed on May 26, 2003, when a heavy equipment transporter crossed a median and struck his vehicle in Samawah, Iraq. He was part of the 501st Military Police Unit of the 1st Armored Division.
Army CPT Paul J. Cassidy, 36, of Laingsburg died in Camp Babylon as a result of non-combat injuries on July 13, 2003. He was part of the 432nd Civil Affairs Battalion based in Ashwaubenon, WI, a suburb of Green Bay. Cassidy, a reservist, was in Iraq performing humanitarian services. He also served as department secretary for the Meridian Township clerk's office.
Army SGT Trevor A. Blumberg, 22, of Wayne County's Canton Township, a paratrooper, died on Sept. 14, 2003, when a roadside bomb hit a convoy and destroyed his Humvee in Fallujah, Iraq. Blumberg was an 82nd Airborne paratrooper with the 1st Battalion of the 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment.
Army SPC Donald L. Wheeler, 22, of Concord died as a result of the injuries he sustained on October 13, 2003, in Tikrit, Iraq, when his unit came under attack from insurgent forces. Wheeler was assigned to A Company, 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, TX.
Army SSG Paul J. Johnson, 29, of Calumet was killed when Iraqi fighters ambushed his patrol in Fallujah, Iraq, on October 20, 2003. Johnson served in the 82nd Airborne Division, based at Fort Bragg, NC. He was a member of the 1st Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment.
Army SPC Artimus D. Brassfield, 22, of Flint was killed in a mortar attack while he played basketball at an outpost on October 24, 2003.
Army SSG Mark D. Vasquez, 35, of Port Huron was killed when the Bradley Fighting Vehicle in which he was riding was struck by an improvised explosive device on November 8, 2003. Vasquez was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division based in Fort Riley, KS.
U.S. Army SSG Paul Neff II, 30, of Fort Mill, SC, on November 7, 2003, in Tikrit. The Black Hawk was shot down by unknown enemy ordnance. Neff was assigned to 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 101st Airborne Division based in Fort Campbell, KY. He is survived by his father in West Branch.
Army PFC Damian S. Bushart, 22, of Oakland County's Waterford Township was killed on November 22, 2004, when a tank collided with his vehicle in Baghdad. Bushart was assigned to A Troop, 1st Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment, 1st Armored Division; Armstrong Barracks, Germany.
Army PFC Jason G. Wright, 19, of Luzerne was killed on December 8, 2003, when his vehicle came under fire while he was providing security at a gas station in northern Iraq. Wright was a mortarman assigned to Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment. He entered the Army in June 2002, and arrived at Fort Campbell, KY, the following December.
Army SSG Thomas W. Christensen, 42, of Atlantic Mine was killed on December 25, 2003, when his living quarters in Baqouba, Iraq, came under mortar attack. Christensen was assigned to the 652nd Engineer Battalion, U.S. Army Reserve, a bridge-building unit based in Harvey. The detachment is a multi-role bridge-building outfit with administrative ties to Ellsworth, WI.
Army SSG Stephen C. Hattamer, 43, of Gwinn was killed on December 25, 2003, when his living quarters in Baqouba, Iraq, came under mortar attack. Hattamer was assigned to the 652nd Engineer Battalion, U.S. Army Reserve, a bridge-building unit based in Harvey. The detachment is a multi-role bridge-building outfit with administrative ties to Ellsworth, WI.
Army PFC Holly J. McGeogh, 19, of Taylor was among three soldiers killed when a homemade bomb exploded on January 31, 2004, along a road near Kirkuk, Iraq, as their convoy passed by. She was assigned to Company A, 4th Forward Support Battalion, 4th Infantry Division, from Fort Hood, TX.
Army SPC Richard K. Trevithick, 20, of Gaines was killed on April 14, 2004, when an improvised explosive device exploded near his convoy vehicle in Balad, Iraq. He was part of the 9th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division out of Schweinfurt, Germany.
Army SFC Bradley C. Fox, 34, who grew up in Adrian, died on April 20, 2004, of wounds suffered March 14 when a roadside bomb detonated near his vehicle. He was serving with the 1st Armored Division.
Army PFC Richard H. Rosas, 21, of St. Louis was one of two soldiers killed on May 25, 2004, when their patrol was hit by an improvised explosive device in Fallujah, Iraq. He was serving with the 3rd Battalion, 62nd Air Defense Artillery, 10th Mountain Division, Light Infantry, based in Fort Drum, NY.
Army SGT Aaron Elandt, 23, of Port Hope died on May 30, 2004, when the Humvee he was in struck a land mine while responding to a mortar attack. Elandt was a cavalry scout with the 1st Armored Division and had been in Iraq for about 14 months.
Army SPC Craig S. Frank, 24, of Lincoln Park, a Michigan National Guard military police officer, died on July 17, 2004, after his vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device near Baghdad. Frank was serving with the 1775th Military Police Company out of Pontiac. He was studying education at Eastern Michigan University before his call-up.
Army SFC David A. Hartman, 41, of Akron died on July 17, 2004, in Beiji after the vehicle he was driving was hit by an improvised explosive device. Hartman was assigned to the Army Reserve's 401st Transportation Company out of Battle Creek.
Army PFC Nicholas H. Blodgett, 21, of Wyoming died on July 21, 2004, in Abdalluyah, Iraq. He was killed when his patrol vehicle hit an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 4th Cavalry Regiment of the Army's 1st Squadron and stationed in Schweinfurt, Germany.
Army SPC Donald R. McCune, 20, of Ypsilanti died on August 5, 2004, in Landstuhl, Germany, of injuries he received when an improvised explosive device detonated near his patrol in Balad. McCune was assigned to the Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 161st Infantry Regiment, 81st Brigade Combat Team and stationed in Moses Lake, WA.
Army SPC Dana Wilson, Hudsonville, 26, of Fountain, CO, died on July 11, 2004, near Al Hillah when the vehicle Wilson was riding in was involved in a head-on collision with another vehicle. Wilson was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 94th Field Artillery Brigade in Baumholder, Germany. Wilson's mother lives in Hudsonville.
Army SSG Donald N. Davis, 42, of Saginaw died on August 24, 2004, when a tractor and a tanker trailer rolled over an embankment in Fallujah, Iraq. Davis was assigned to the U.S. Army Reserve's 660th Transportation Company in Zanesville, OH.
Army SGT Carl Thomas, 29, a native of Detroit who lived in Phoenix before being stationed at Fort Hood, TX, died on September 13, 2004, when a homemade explosive detonated near his Army observation post in Baghdad. Thomas was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment.
Army PVT Mark Barbret, 22, of Macomb County's Shelby Township died on October 14, 2004, when the Humvee he was riding in hit a roadside bomb near Ramadi, Iraq. Barbret was an Army mechanic with the 2nd Infantry Division.
Army SPC Don A. Clary, of Troy, Kansas died on November 8, 2004, in Baghdad when a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated near his convoy. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 130th Field Artillery, Kansas National Guard in Horton, KS. Clary's mother resides in Flint.
Army PFC Dennis Miller Jr., 21, of La Salle died on November 10, 2004, after his unit came under attack and a rocket-propelled grenade struck his tank in Ramadi, Iraq. Miller was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 72nd Armor Regiment, 2nd Infantry Division.
Marine LCpl Justin D. Reppuhn, 20, of Hemlock died on November 11, 2004, as a result of enemy action in Al Anbar Province. Reppuhn was assigned to motor transport duties with the 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division.
Marine LCpl Justin M. Ellsworth, 20, of Mount Pleasant died on November 14, 2004, while on reconnaissance during the U.S. assault on Fallujah. He was assigned to a Combat Service Support Battalion 1 in the First Marine Expeditionary Force in Camp Pendleton, CA.
Marine LCpl Michael Wayne Hanks, 22, of Gregory, died on November 17, 2004, as a result of enemy action in Al Anbar Province. He was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, in the First Marine Expeditionary Force. The Marines issued him a formal commendation on May 11, 2003, for saving the life of an Iraqi civilian in Ash Shatra, 170 miles south of Baghdad.
Marine Cpl Gentian Marku, 22, of Warren, died on November 25, 2004, as a result of enemy action in Al Anbar Province. Marku was assigned to 1st Battallion, 8th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force and stationed at Camp Lejeune, NC. He was awarded medals for good conduct, humanitarian service, combat action, and other activities. Marku moved to the United States from Albania when he was 14.
Army SPC Corey Hubbell, Holly, 20, of Urbana, Illinois died on June 26, 2004, in Camden Yards, Kuwait, in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Hubbell died from a non-combat related cause. Hubbell was assigned to Company B, 46th Engineer Battalion, Fort Rucker, AL. Hubbell's father resides in Holly.
This list was provided by the Detroit Free Press on December 1, 2004.