2018 3rd Issue Newsletter

Volume 15 Issue 3

Inside this issue:

  • Goodbyes are Never Easy
  • Troop Thanks
  • Donation Challenge
  • LHCP Welcomes New Treasurer
  • 2018 Sponsors (Sep— Dec)
  • Honorees for 3 rd Issue 2018
  • 2018 Sep-Dec Shipping Statistics
  • Unit Needs Continue

View and Print PDF Version


Goodbyes are Never Easy

It is with saddened hearts, but much love, that we say goodbye to our steadfast treasurer, Sharon Buck. After fourteen years of service to Landstuhl Hospital Care Project, Sharon has decided to step down.

Sharon came to LHCP in the beginning and has been the one and only treasurer all these years. She lent her expertise and effort in getting LHCP its non-profit status. She kept up with the special registrations needed for certain states. Basically, LHCP would never have been able to help all the people it has helped without Sharon working in the background!

The LHCP board will truly miss Sharon’s presence! “[Sharon’s] skills as a Treasurer are the best I have ever seen. She has been so faithful about keeping LHCP on the good side of the IRS. She stays up to date with the state registrations and all of the financial data… I would not have been able to complete the Annual Report each year without her attention to detail. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with her during my time with LHCP,” commented Donna Bolen, Vice President, when asked about Sharon. Karen Grimord, LHCP President, says, “It is a sad day. She has touched more lives than we can imagine.”

On a personal level, I worked with Sharon on the board for five years. She was so helpful and welcoming when I came in, knowing nothing. She’s such a lovely person, always giving of herself—above and beyond what is asked.

There is a silver lining in this cloud of goodbye, she’s not going far, Sharon will still stay a part of LHCP and continue to support our mission. Sharon, for all you’ve done, all you’ve given these many years, all of us at LHCP thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

Maria Waddell, Editor


Troop Thanks

How are you? Happy holidays!! I wanted to let you know that we have received all of your recent packages. It was a nice treat to receive the fleece blankets, coffee, flags and additional care packages. The soldiers and myself truly appreciate all of your team’s efforts with putting these together. If there is anything we can do in return to show our gratitude, please let me know. Thank you again.

Platoon Sergeant, FBS
DUSTOFF in Iraq


Donation Challenge

One of LHCP’s largest sponsors has set a challenge for all supporters. Through February 28, 2019, they will match every dollar contributed up
to $15,000! Please be generous in your donations! The amount of good that LHCP could do with $30,000 is unimaginable! See page 4 for where to send checks or how to donate online. Tell all your friends and family!

LHCP would love to have you or your organization sponsor a fundraising event to support the LHCP mission to provide comfort and care items to sick, injured or wounded military services members overseas. If your organization is interested, please contact Karen Grimord at 540-286-1512.


LHCP Welcomes New Treasurer

As we must say goodbye to our long-time Treasurer, Sharon, we get to say a big hello and welcome to Sherry Karlson! Sherry has been a supporter of LHCP for many years, but now she is stepping into the position of Treasurer.

Sherry grew up in Clinton MD, the oldest daughter of a Navy Veteran. She graduated High School in 1979 and met her husband in 1985 when he was stationed at the Pentagon. They married in March 1987. She moved around the world with her husband while he was stationed in Naples Italy, Travis Air Force Base (AFB) and Keesler AFB. At each duty station, she was involved in a variety of organization activities and was a mentor to younger families. In the summer of 1998, her husband retired from the Air Force and they settled in Woodbridge, VA

Looking for the sense of belonging that comes with the military lifestyle, she joined the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary in 2002. Sherry quickly became active and served as the 2nd Vice President where she was responsible for fundraising and was named as the “Lady of the Year” for the Auxiliary Unit. She subsequently served as 1 st Vice President where she was responsible for membership, and then the Unit President for the 1st of five separate terms of service. She has also been named the Auxiliary Lady of the
Year for the Department of Virginia in 2007-2008. She went on to serve as District President and Chairwomen of the Americanism committee for the Department of Virginia.

It’s obvious that Sherry has the fortitude and experience to be a tremendous support to LHCP as she steps into the position of Treasurer. Please be sure to send her a big welcome! You may reach her by email at [email protected].


With Gratitude to Our Generous Sponsors

2018 Sponsors—September through December

Individuals and Families

Anderson, G., IN
Anderson, S., IN
Apycholski, C., MS
Arseculeratne, R., VA
Badgley, B., MI
Badgley, J., MI
Bath, M., AL
Bolen, D., SC
Breidel, G., MN
Buck, S., AL
Bujorian, R., TN
Burkel, D., MN
Byrnes, E., PA
Chan, C., CA
Clawson, D. & D., WI
Crist, M., TN
Driskill, T, TX
Eanes, L., VA
Elledge, C., MS
Gittelman, S., KS
Granquist, K., SD
Grimord, D., NC
Grimord, K., VA
Hansen, L., VA
Howard, R., VA
Jansen, S., MO
Javor, TN
Jones, S. & M., WI
Kelly, P., CA
Kuckuk, C., WI
Kurzenknabe, G., PA
Lambert, R., MD
Lane, D. & F., CA
Lienczewski, E., MI
Mann, A., NY
Marion, D., TX
May, D., KY
McAlister, J., TN
McCarthy, W., VA
McKay, A., AZ
Nelson, D., KS
Nichols, H., TN
O’Brien, B., PA
O’Neill, M., Unk.
Osgood, J., APO-AE
Ownby, L., TN
Pasternak, J., VA
Pemberton, J., MI
Pineau, B., France
Reynolds, M., OK
Rivers, C., AR
Roberts, R., TN
Sanders Family, Unk.
Sann, R., DC
Seljeskog, M., SD
Serafini, M., CT
Smith, E., FL
Waddell, C., NC
Spiedlt, J., ID
Waddell, M., NC
Stanley, L., MN
Steinman, M., NV
Weaver, J., TN
Wolfe, F., CA
Stutts, T., TN
Wolford, C., PA
Vasquez, S., T

Businesses and Organizations

Amer Leg Aux Unit 62, AZ
Amer Leg Aux Unit 180, VA
Amer Leg Aux Unit 290, VA
Amer Leg Aux Unit 364, VA
Amer Leg Aux Unit 428, WI
Amer Leg Aux Unit 1976, VA
Amer Leg Post 2, WI
Amer Leg Post 326, TX
Amer Leg Post 521, WI
Amer Leg Riders Post 189, NY
Benevity Fund, Canada
Betty Crocker, VA
Beyond the Call of Duty Ministries, FL
Brandl Farms, WI
Daughters of Amer Rev, TN
Doc’s Harley Davidson, WI
Gateway Technical College, WI
Girls Nation, IL
Goodshop, CA
Grace Chapel LLC, TN
Holy Family R. C. Congregation, IL
Hillsboro Athens LLC, TN
IHL Services Inc., TN
Network for Good, DC
Sons of American Legion Squadron 189, NY
Standard Textile, OH
United Way of California Region, CA
Wolf River HOG Chapter, W

Honorees for 3rd Issue 2018 Shipments

September October
Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis
Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo
Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo

Died 6 June 2011 while serving during Operation New Dawn. 20, of Madelia, MN., assigned to 1st Battalion, 7th Field Art. Reg, 2nd HB Combat Team, 1st Infantry Div., Fort Riley, KS.; died of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with indirect fire in Baghdad.

Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis
Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis

Died 15 July 2011 while serving during OEF. 40, of Rapid City, SD.; assigned to 1st Squad, 10th Cavalry, 2nd Brig. Combat Team, 4th Inf Div, Fort Carson, CO; died in Afghanistan when insurgents attacked his unit with small-arms fire.

November December
Army Spc. Mark J. Downer Army Sgt. Aaron C. Elandt
Army Spc. Mark J. Downer
Army Spc. Mark J. Downer

Army Spc. Mark J. DownerDied 5 August 2011 while serving during OEF. 23, of Warner Robins, GA; a combat medic assigned to 1st Battalion, 32nd Inf Reg, 3rd Brig. Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, NY; died in Afghanistan, when enemy forces attacked his unit with a rocket-propelled grenade.

Army Sgt. Aaron C. Elandt
Army Sgt. Aaron C. Elandt

Died 30 May 2004 while serving during OIF. 23, of Lowell, MI.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany; killed when his vehicle hit an improvised explosive device in Musayyib, Iraq.


2018 Sept-Dec Shipping Statistics

Country Weight Cost Boxes Shipped
Afghanistan 328.93 $593.45  11
Germany 3,064.03 $3,150.80 249
Iraq 274.60 $449.40 8
Qatar 1,121.26 $1,868.55 35
Syria 793.50 $1,612.80 34
Other 111.72 $113.52 3
Total 5,694.04 $7,788.52 340

MONETARY DONATIONS MADE EASY!

Now you can make a monetary donation so easy using PayPal! Go to PayPal.com and send your donation to [email protected] and type in Landstuhl Hospital Care Project when asked for a name. Please include your address. We will send a letter of thanks for your tax-deductible donation.


Unit Needs Continue

At this time, LHCP is placing focus on receiving monetary donations. Unit needs are fluid, and we can quickly respond using cash donations to purchase requested items.

Please make checks payable to the Landstuhl Hospital Care Project.

Please mail your packages and/or checks to:

LHCP President
Attn: Karen Grimord
29 Greenleaf Terrace
Stafford, VA 22556

LHCP is a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt non-profit organization.

Richard Berrettini

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Lt. Col. Richard J. Berrettini


Army Lt. Col. Richard J. Berrettini

Richard J. Berrettini
Richard J. Berrettini

Died January 11, 2008, Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

52, of Wilcox, Pa.; assigned to the Pennsylvania Army National Guard Medical Detachment, Erie Clinic, Erie, Pa.; died Jan. 11 in San Antonio of wounds sustained Jan. 2 in Khowst province, Afghanistan when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.


Guardsman dies from injuries sustained in Afghanistan

The Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. — A soldier has died in Texas from combat injuries he suffered in Afghanistan, the Pennsylvania Army National Guard announced Jan. 13.

Lt. Col. Richard J. Berrettini, 52, from Eldred, McKean County, died Jan. 11, nine days after the attack, which also killed an interpreter and South Carolina National Guard Sgt. Shawn F. Hill, 37, of Wellford, S.C.

Berrettini was scheduled to return home at the end of the month after a year in Afghanistan. A nurse practitioner, he had volunteered to serve in Afghanistan. In civilian life, Berrettini was a Port Allegany High School nurse.

He joined the Pennsylvania National Guard in 1984 and was a former active duty sailor.

“He was a very good man, very professional, somebody, they trusted,” said retired teacher Ron Caskey, a former colleague of Berrettini’s. “He was a confidante.”

Tony Flint, Port Allegany superintendent of schools, said Berrettini had been an elementary school nurse for seven years before becoming a nurse at the high school, where he also worked for seven years.

Berrettini, who died at Brooke Army Medical Center, is survived by his wife, Jane; mother, Doris; brother, Nello; and sons Vincent, 26, and Christopher, 22.

Vincent Berrettini is an Air Force Academy graduate and an Air Force pilot. Christopher Berrettini is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y.

Source: Military Times


Nurse Killed in Afghanistan Bombing

Pennsylvania school nurse had nearly finished tour of duty.

Author – Jennifer Moser

Army Lt. Col. Richard J. Berrettini
Army Lt. Col. Richard J. Berrettini

Lieutenant Colonel Richard J. Berrettini, RN, CRNP, 52, of the Army National Guard, died January 11 of injuries he sustained while serving at Camp Clark in Khowst, Afghanistan. Berrettini, of Eldred, Pennsylvania, was a school nurse in nearby Port Allegany. Injured in a roadside bombing January 2, Berrettini was flown to medical centers in Germany and then Texas, where he died.

“He just had a way about him that would put people at ease,” said Andrew Barrett, ANP-BC, a former coworker at the ED of Bradford Regional Medical Center in Bradford, Pennsylvania. Berrettini had a great sense of humor and great nursing skills, said Brian Benjamin, LPN, also of Bradford Regional. Asked for his favorite memory of Berrettini, Benjamin sighed. “I only have about a million of them,” he said.

Berrettini spent 15 years as a school nurse in elementary and high schools. In Afghanistan, he cared for Camp Clark personnel and for Afghan citizens, especially children. He had nearly completed his one-year tour of duty when he was injured; two others died and one other was injured in the blast. Berrettini is survived by his wife and two grown sons.

Captain David J. McDill, who served with Berrettini at Camp Clark, said, “He hated me saluting him, but I did it because it’s a sign of respect. And he earned mine.

Source: NursingCenter.com

 

 

LHCP Reaches GuideStar Platinum

Allows Donors to Focus on Progress and Results

GuideStar USA
GuideStar USA

STAFFORD, VA—Landstuhl Hospital Care Project has earned the 2018 Platinum GuideStar Nonprofit Profile Seal of Transparency, the highest level of recognition offered by GuideStar, the world’s largest source of nonprofit information. By sharing metrics that highlight progress Landstuhl Hospital Care Project (LHCP) is making toward its mission, the organization is helping donors move beyond simplistic ways of nonprofit evaluation such as overhead ratios.

In accordance with LHCP’s long-held belief in being transparent about our work,  we are excited to convey our organization’s results in a user-friendly and highly visual manner. By updating our GuideStar Nonprofit Profile to the Platinum level, we can now easily share a wealth of up-to-date organizational metrics with our supporters as well as GuideStar’s immense online audience, which includes donors, grantmakers, our peers, and the media.”

To reach the Platinum level, the Landstuhl Hospital Care Project added extensive information to its Nonprofit Profile on GuideStar: basic contact and organizational information; in-depth financial information; qualitative information about goals, strategies, and capabilities; and quantitative information about results and progress toward its mission. By taking the time to provide this information, LHCP has demonstrated its commitment to transparency and to giving donors and funders meaningful data to evaluate Landstuhl Hospital Care Project.

The Landstuhl Hospital Care Project encourages you to visit our profile on GuideStar to see what we’re all about,” LHCP is thrilled that our GuideStar Platinum Nonprofit Profile and its associated benefits help us better communicate our organization’s exciting initiatives at a global scale.”

Since 2005 the Landstuhl Hospital Care Project has been providing comfort and relief items for U.S. military members who become sick, injured or wounded from service and deployed members around the globe.

About GuideStar Nonprofit Profiles

The GuideStar database contains a profile for every tax-exempt nonprofit registered with the IRS. GuideStar encourages every nonprofit to claim and update its profile at no cost to the organization. Updating allows nonprofits to share a wealth of up-to-date information with more than 8 million people who visit GuideStar to learn more about nonprofit organizations each year. Updating also allows nonprofits to share information with the more than 200 philanthropic websites and applications that are powered by GuideStar data. To reach a given participation level, organizations need to complete all required fields for that participation level. The GuideStar participation levels acknowledged as symbols of transparency in the nonprofit sector are displayed on all updated participants’ profiles in the GuideStar database.

PDF Download

News Contact:

President Karen Grimord
29 Greenleaf Terrace
Stafford, VA 22556
(877) 999-8322
[email protected]
www.LandstuhlHospitalCareProject.org

Donation Request

Landstuhl Hospital Care Project Fund Raiser  (download PDF)

Landstuhl Hospital Care Project
29 Greenleaf Terrace
Stafford, VA 22556
540-286-1512

Dear Friend,

Once again, we are asking for your help. We are seeking donations to help us fulfill our mission to provide comfort and care items to Soldiers, Sailors Airmen, and Marines who become wounded, sick, or injured and the medical staff caring for them. LHCP is currently supporting nine units, deployed in combat areas, by assisting them with comfort and care items.

Our major contributor has presented LHCP and its sponsors with a challenge for increasing donations over the next two months. They have committed to match every dollar that we raise from now until 28 February 2019 up to $15,000. We could possibly raise $30,000 by the end of February  2019 if we can meet this challenge.

Please consider making a donation to help us meet our mission needs and to support our men and women in uniform. You can donate through the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) that continues through the middle of January 2019. If asked to donate to the CFC at work, please consider supporting LHCP. Our designation code is 12282.

Have you considered making a monthly pledge? No donation is too small. It will be matched 100%. Please send your donation to:

Landstuhl Hospital Care Project
29 Greenleaf Terrace
Stafford, VA 22556

You can donate online in several ways. PayPal is easy. Go to www.paypal.com and send your donation to [email protected] and then type in Landstuhl Hospital Care Project. If you visit our website, you can donate through Click and Pledge or Give Direct. In addition, we accept vehicle donations as a tax-deductible donation. Moreover, when you order from Amazon, please list Landstuhl Hospital Care Project as your charity through Amazon Smile and a percentage of your order will be donated to LHCP. Every one of these methods will be matched 100%.

Finally, please ask at work how you can donate through corporate matching programs established with your workplace giving programs. Many times corporations will match your donation 100%. Then our contributor will match that 100%. It is a “win-win” for LHCP and the troops we support. With your generosity, LHCP will be able to continue to provide comfort and care to our many service members serving our country so far from home.

Thank you in advance for your generosity.

Very respectfully,
Sharon Buck
LHCP Treasurer

LHCP is a 2018 Combined Federal Campaign Charity (CFC.) Code #12282

In accordance with IRS requirements, we acknowledge that no goods or services of significant value were given to you in exchange for your support. Donations to Landstuhl Hospital Care Project (LHCP) are tax-deductible under Section 501(c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code. LHCP will never sell, trade, or share your personal information with any other entity, nor send mailings on behalf of other organizations without your express consent. Supporting America’s Largest Overseas U. S. Military Hospital and Combat Support Hospitals in Afghanistan and the Middle East LHCP is a 501(c) (3) tax-exempt, nonprofit charitable organization.

Download PDF

Aaron Elandt Page

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Sgt. Aaron C. Elandt.


Army Sgt. Aaron C. Elandt

Died May 30, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom
23, of Lowell, Mich.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany; killed May 30 when his vehicle hit an improvised explosive device in Musayyib, Iraq.

Michigan soldier killed in Iraq

Associated Press

PORT HOPE, Mich. — A Michigan man was killed in a land mine blast in Iraq, the Department of Defense and his family said.

Sgt. Aaron Elandt, 23, of Port Hope, died Sunday evening when the Humvee he was in struck a land mine while responding to a mortar attack, his brother Matt Elandt said. The explosion happened in Musayyib, Iraq, south of Baghdad.

“My favorite word for him was irreverent,” his mother, Linda Elandt, told the Detroit Free Press for a Wednesday story. “He did his own thing.”

Elandt was a cavalry scout with the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 1st Armored Division and had been in Iraq for about 14 months. Lt. Col. Diane Battaglia, with the Army Public Affairs office, said Elandt’s death will be investigated, as is the case with every soldier’s death in Iraq.

The youngest of four children, he joined the military in 2000 after graduating from Harbor Beach High School in 1999.

He followed a family tradition started by his father, Paul Elandt, who served two years in Vietnam. His older sister and two older brothers also served in the Army.

Paul Elandt, 58, said he encouraged his son to travel and broaden his horizons.

“Linda said, ‘I can’t stand another one in the military.’ I told them get out of Huron County and see a bit of the world,” he said.

Harbor Beach Community Schools Superintendent Ron Kraft called Elandt “a courageous young man” dedicated to serving his country.

“He was a solid young man as a student and as a citizen,” Kraft told the Huron Daily Tribune of Bad Axe. “Our prayers and condolences go to his family during this very trying time.”

At the bar in the Port Hope Hotel, residents of the tiny community in Michigan’s Thumb mourned the death of one of their own.

Jim Hunley, 56, of Port Hope, said his son graduated from high school with Elandt.

“I’m just shocked, but that’s what he wanted to do and he gave it his all. He was a good kid. He never got into trouble. He just said, ‘It’s my time to go and serve my country,”’ Hunley said.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-sgt-aaron-c-elandt/257291

 

Mark Downer Page

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Spc. Mark J. Downer.


Army Spc. Mark J. Downer

Army Spc. Mark J. Downer
Army Spc. Mark J. Downer

Died August 5, 2011 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom
23, of Warner Robins, Ga.; a combat medic was assigned to 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.; died Aug. 5 in Sangsar, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with a rocket-propelled grenade.

‘He always did what was best for others’

The Associated Press

WARNER ROBINS, Ga. — Mourners packed a church here Aug. 13 as a 23-year-old soldier killed in Afghanistan was mourned and remembered by family and friends in his hometown.

More than 200 people attended the funeral service for Army Spc. Mark J. Downer, a combat medic who died Aug. 5 in a rocket-propelled grenade attack in Kandahar province.

“He always did what was best for others,” Downer’s aunt, Sandra Downer, said during the service. “The profession he chose — to be a medic — was a dangerous one, and he’s a very intelligent young man, so he knew the danger that would befall him, but he did it anyway. He strived to do his best.”

Downer joined the Army in 2009, according to the Macon (Ga.) Telegraph. He was assigned to the 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.

People lined the streets a day before the funeral as police escorted the hearse carrying Downer’s casket after it arrived in Warner Robins.

During the funeral, the soldier’s father, Garfield Downer, was presented with two medals — the Purple Heart and Bronze Star — awarded to his fallen son.

Family and friends remembered Downer as quiet. He graduated in 2005 from Northside High School, where he played football and ran track.

A former classmate, Courtney Chaplin, described Downer as funny, loving and selfless.
https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-spc-mark-j-downer/6567901

Army Spc. Mark J. Downer

Army Spc. Mark J. DownerWarner Robins soldier dies in rocket attack in Afghanistan
By Mike Stucka
August 06, 2011 12:00 AM
A U.S. Army combat medic from Warner Robins died after insurgents attacked in Afghanistan, the U.S. Department of Defense announced Saturday.
Spc. Mark J. Downer, 23, died Friday of his wounds in Kandahar province. He had been injured when his unit was attacked with a rocket-propelled grenade.
He is survived by a child, his mother and his father, according to an official with the Fort Drum, N.Y.-based 10th Mountain Division. Downer served in the division’s 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team.
Downer joined the Army in December 2009 and was trained in Fort Sill, Okla., and Fort Sam Houston, Texas. He came to Fort Drum in June 2010 and deployed with his unit in March to support Operation Enduring Freedom.
His awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the NATO Medal and the Combat Medic Badge.
https://www.macon.com/news/local/military/article28614991.html

Lex Lewis

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis.


Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis

Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis
Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis

Died July 15, 2011 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

40, of Rapid City, S.D.; assigned to 1st Squadron, 10th Cavalry, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.; died July 15 at Shewan Garrison, Farah province, Afghanistan, from injuries suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with small-arms fire.

South Dakota soldier killed in Afghanistan laid to rest

The Associated Press

RAPID CITY, S.D. – Army Staff Sergeant Lex Lewis of Rapid City was buried at Black Hills National Cemetery.

The 40-year-old Lewis was killed July 15th when insurgents shot at his unit in Farah Province. The recipient of a Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Combat Action Badge, Lewis was a cavalry scout with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

KOTA-TV reports that a group of onlookers and Rapid City firefighters overlooked the funeral procession. Lewis’ body was carried from Calvary Lutheran Church to its final resting place at Black Hills National Cemetery on Thursday.

Lewis was in the first month of his third war deployment to the Middle East. His previous two deployments were to Iraq.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-staff-sgt-lex-l-lewis/6567869

Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis
Army Staff Sgt. Lex L. Lewis

Rapid City soldier killed in Afghanistan

Nick Penzenstadler Journal staff  Jul 18, 2011

A Rapid City mother heard the ring of a doorbell this weekend that every military family dreads.

At the door were members of the Army’s casualty notification team with news that her son Lex had been killed Friday while fighting in Afghanistan. “I never dreamt I’d hear that sound and open the door to that news,” his mother, Betty Lewis of Rapid City, said Sunday. “He was a wonderful son. I’m so proud of him.”

Sgt. Lex Lewis, 40, of Rapid City was a cavalry scout with the 1st Squadron, 10th Cavalry, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, out of Fort Carson, Colo., supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Lewis died from injuries suffered Friday, when insurgents attacked his unit with small-arms fire in Farah province, Afghanistan. The U.S. Department of Defense announced his death Sunday.

Lewis is the second service member from Rapid City to die in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the 24th South Dakotan killed since 2001, according to Defense Department records.

After attending Rapid City Central High School, Lewis, a Rapid City native, started his military career in the Navy and was stationed in Japan. After finishing an enlistment, he immediately enrolled in the Army in 1999.

“He absolutely loved the Army, and the Army life fit him well. He wanted to serve his country,” Betty Lewis said Sunday. “He just liked being a soldier. He played Army when he was little boy all the time, and this is what he wanted to do.”

After a first tour in Iraq from April 2003 to July 2004, Lewis returned to Rapid City, where he worked as a security guard at Ellsworth Air Force Base. Soon after, he re-enlisted in the Army and deployed on a second tour to Iraq, from September 2008 to September 2009.

Lewis was on his first deployment to Afghanistan with the unit that deployed only last month. He is the brigade’s first casualty.

The 3,800-soldier 2nd Brigade deployed to Afghanistan in June, replacing the 1st Brigade Combat Team, according to a report in the Colorado Springs Gazette. It is working in Farah province, in western Afghanistan, near the Iranian border, to clear out insurgents. The unit has been working with NATO partners including Italy and Spain.

Lewis is survived by his mother, Betty, his wife, Molly Lewis, and a 6-year-old stepdaughter, Ariel, both of Colorado Springs, Colo. Lewis has a stepbrother, Frank McCormick of Kaysville, Utah, and a half-sister, Lacy, of Florida.

South Dakota governor Dennis Daugaard offered condolences Sunday afternoon after hearing of Lewis’ death.

“It is a tragedy to lose Sgt. Lewis, and my deepest sympathies go out to his loved ones,” Daugaard said in a prepared statement. “Many brave men and women risk their lives, every day, to protect our freedoms, and we grieve each time one of these heroes makes the ultimate sacrifice. Linda and I are praying for Sgt. Lewis’ family, and for the safe return of all those who serve our nation overseas.”

Lewis’s decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, NATO Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, South West Asia Service Medal and National Defense Service Medal.

https://rapidcityjournal.com/news/rapid-city-soldier-killed-in-afghanistan/article_dc03cbf6-b0f7-11e0-8285-001cc4c03286.html

 

 

Emilio Campo

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross.


Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo

Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo
Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo

Died June 6, 2011 Serving During Operation New Dawn

20, of Madelia, Minn., assigned to 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kan.; died of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with indirect fire June 6 in Baghdad.

Family: Soldier from Madelia killed in Iraq

The Associated Press

MADELIA, Minn. — A 20-year-old medic from the southern Minnesota town of Madelia who joined the Army to pursue his dream of becoming a doctor has died while serving in Iraq, relatives said.

Sgt. Emilio Campo Jr. was killed in combat June 6, family members said. The Defense Department did not immediately release details of how he died. Campo’s parents traveled to Dover Air Force Base, Del., for the return of his body.

Campo’s cousin Marcella Rivera said Campo wanted a career in medicine and thought the Army was his best opportunity for that. “He thought he wanted to be a doctor, but he told his mom, ‘I’ve got to be realistic because we can’t pay for college.'”

Campo followed his older brother, Hector, into the military. His younger brother, Hugo, will be a senior at Madelia High School next fall, his friends said.  Campo graduated in 2009 from Madelia High School, where Principal Allan Beyer said Campo played basketball as his main sport but also participated in track, football and choir.

“He was a real credit to his family, his school and his community. Every time he was home on leave, he’d come to visit with schoolmates, teachers and staff. He was very proud of what he was doing,” the principal said.

Five of Campo’s classmates stopped by June 7 to share their grief and their memories, Beyer said.  “It’s like losing a son, even though he’s not my son,” said Kathy Schumacher, a teacher at the school. Schumacher’s son, Tom, has been friends with Campo since they were in third grade. 
Dustin VanHale, a classmate and good friend, said Campo “was always best friends with everybody.” He was a motivator, telling basketball teammates after a 25-point loss, “don’t worry, we’ll get ’em next time.”

“He’s not the best-looking guy in the world but he was always getting all the girls,” VanHale said. “We’d be playing basketball and he’d leave with two, three girls’ phone numbers. He was always traveling to different places to hang with this girl or that girl.”  But when he died he also had a steady girlfriend, Samantha Crowley, who was prom queen when Campo was prom king in 2009.

Longtime friend Tom Schumacher said Campo was “a very social person,” ”a smooth talker,” ”a big partier,” and “a regular Casanova.”  “He was always the most calm. He was the funny one. We did a lot of stuff, he just loved doing stuff,” Schumacher said. “He just tried to live his life to the fullest. He was always helping other people. He felt (the Army) was one way he could help.”

Brendon Caraway said he joined the Marine Reserves about the same time Campo joined the Army. “I haven’t been overseas,” Caraway said. “When he came home in February he was talking to me about what it’s like and everything: He’s a medic, just doing his job, just gotta do the best you can and be careful.”  Schumacher said Campo appeared to be unafraid.

“Everybody always worried about him, told him to come home,” Schumacher said. “He was always the one who told everybody not to worry, shrugged it off like it was no big deal. Made it seem like he was invincible. That’s what we always said.”

Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo
Army Spc. Emilio J. Campo

Former classmates remember fallen Minn. soldier

The Associated Press

MADELIA, Minn. — Former classmates of a soldier killed recently in Iraq remembered the man as someone who was charismatic, joyful and impulsive.

Sgt. Emilio Campo Jr., 20, of Madelia was one of five soldiers who died in a rocket attack June 6.  Campo’s former classmates at Madelia High School gathered for a memorial June 9 where they reminisced about the former homecoming king.  Samantha Bestick recalled going to the mall with him and watching him get joyfully boisterous, having a good time all by himself.  Jared Bridges says his former classmate wanted to go into sports medicine. He jokes it was because Campo always got hurt playing sports. 

According to the Free Press of Mankato, Campo’s favorite quote was: “Dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die today.”

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-spc-emilio-j-campo/6567787

 

 

Jacob Ross

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross.


Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross

Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross
Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross

Died March 24, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

19, of Gillette, Wyo.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died March 24, while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

Marine from Gillette killed in Afghanistan

The Associated Press

GILLETTE, Wyo. — A Marine from Gillette has been killed while supporting combat operations in Afghanistan, the Department of Defense confirmed Monday.

Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross, 19, died Wednesday in Helmand province, military officials said Monday.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.

Ross’ uncle, Steve Sundermeyer, told the Gillette News-Record that Ross’ deployment was supposed to end in May. Ross’ survivors include his wife, sister and brother who is in high school but also plans to join the Marines, Sundermeyer said.

Ross’ father also had joined the Marines.

Ross played soccer and also swam at Campbell County High School. He started working as a carpenter for Shober Builders as a teen and also was a state champion in the Skills USA carpentry competition.

“We sure thought a lot of him,” said his boss, Mick Shober. “I would give him a job back in a heartbeat.” Shober’s eyes welled with tears as he talked about his former employee. He said he admired Ross’ sacrifice.  “It’s the sad part of war, but you can’t let the rest of the world stomp you down.”

Those who knew Ross said he was quiet, polite, intelligent, hardworking and kindhearted.

Friend Miles Fortner, 21, said Ross enjoyed hunting, fishing, hiking and camping.

In 2008, the two decided to canoe the Belle Fourche River. They began paddling near Hulett and continued for more than 100 miles to Belle Fourche, S.D. During their journey, an oar broke and they lost a couple bottles of water.  “It just added to the adventure,” Fortner said.

The two kept in touch after high school, and last month Ross called him from a satellite phone. They chatted about Afghanistan. “He said he was having a great time over there, doing what he wanted to do and wouldn’t take it back for nothing,” Fortner said.

Marine was ‘was absolutely fearless’

Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross
Marine Lance Cpl. Jacob A. Ross

The Associated Press

One of Jacob Ross’ friends said the 19-year-old Marine was “fearless.” Another friend said he had a “backbone like an iron rod.”

Once, while on a winter camping trip, the Wyoming native took to a nearby hill with his skis, said friend Dave Jones. Earlier that day, he had been huddled in a tent with Jones’ children watching snow fall.  “Jake was absolutely fearless,” Jones said. “That was just Jake.”

Friend Miles Fortner remembered Ross as a boy who stood up for his beliefs and readily defended others. “Ever since I met Jake, he’s always wanted to be a Marine,” Fortner said. “He was bent one way that was the Marine way. … He had a backbone like an iron rod.”  Fortner added that he thought Ross was quick to forgive and always treated others with respect.

Ross, of Gillette, WY, died March 24 in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to Camp Lejeune. 

“A hero is somebody that loves. … Eventually if you love deeply and long enough, you will die for that,” said family friend Kenneth Royce. “There are funerals not happening today because of Lance Cpl. Jake Ross.”

Ross graduated from Campbell County High School in northeastern Wyoming.  Family members said he was on his final mission of a deployment that was scheduled to end in May.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/marine-lance-cpl-jacob-a-ross/4559605

 

Carl Enis

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Staff Sgt. Carl Enis.


Died March 15, 2018 Serving During Operation Inherent Resolve

31, of Tallahassee, Florida, died March 15 when an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter crashed in western Iraq. Enis was assigned to the Air Force Reserve’s 308th Rescue Squadron at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida.

Staff Sgt. Carl Enis
Staff Sgt. Carl Enis

The Defense Department on Saturday released the names of seven airmen who were killed this week when their HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter crashed in western Iraq. The airmen, who were deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, belonged to three different units — the 38th Rescue Squadron at Moody Air Force Base, Georgia; the 106th Rescue Wing of the New York National Guard; and the Air Force Reserve’s 308th Rescue Squadron at Patrick Air Force Base, Florida.

Staff Sgt. Carl Enis, 31, of Tallahassee, Florida. Enis also was a member of the 308th Rescue Squadron. Enis joined the unit in 2010 and served for eight years, according to the 920th Rescue Wing. Enis was a pararescueman who also worked as a commercial real estate salesman for TLG Real Estate Services in Tallahassee, Florida, according to a family friend who spoke to Air Force Times on Friday.

Ben Wilkinson, the president and co-owner of TLG, said in a Friday interview that when he met Enis four years ago, he was struck by what a “steady” and “solid guy” Enis was, and they quickly became close friends. “He was golden,” Wilkinson said. “He was a great guy. Carl seemed to have met more people than you could ever imagine for someone his age. Honest to God, no one ever spoke an ill word about him.”

Enis’ awards and decorations include the Air Reserve Forces Meritorious Service Medal with bronze oak leaf cluster, the National Defense Service Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal. In the past two years, Enis received multiple awards, to include Airman of the Year for both the 920th Rescue Wing and Air Force Reserve Command.

The airmen were killed Thursday when their Pave Hawk crashed in western Iraq, near the town of al-Qa’im in Anbar province. The crash does not appear to have resulted from enemy fire. The incident is under investigation, according to officials.

The incident was immediately reported by another U.S. helicopter flying with the one that crashed, and a quick-reaction force comprised of Iraqi Security Forces and coalition members was dispatched to secure the scene.

Lt. Col. Damien Pickart, spokesman for U.S. Air Forces Central Command, said in an email Friday that the Pave Hawk was deployed to AFCENT from the Alaska Air National Guard’s 176th Wing from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/staff-sgt-carl-enis/6568743

SSGT Carl Phillippe Enis

Staff Sgt. Carl Enis
Staff Sgt. Carl Enis

Staff Sergeant Carl P. Enis was born March 31, 1986, in Miami, Florida. In 2004, he moved to Tallahassee, Florida, to study at Florida State University and graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Environmental Studies. Sergeant Enis later returned to his studies at Florida State University and graduated in 2017 with a Master’s in Business Administration.

He was a pararescueman in the United States Air Force and was a member of the 308th Rescue Squadron, Patrick Air Force Base, Florida.

On March 15, 2018, at 31 years of age, Sergeant Enis was killed in a helicopter crash in western Iraq along with six others. Pararescuemen, or PJs, are elite Guardian Angel Airmen who serve as highly trained rescue specialists, providing life-saving trauma care and search and rescue. They are expert marksmen, parachutists, SCUBA divers, mountaineers, and trauma medics. They have a special skill set that allows them to perform rescue anytime, anywhere. They live by the Pararescue Creed: These things we do, that others may live.

Sergeant Enis embodied the PJ creed and, in 2013, was named 920th Rescue Wing Airman of the Year and Air Force Reserve Command Pararescueman of the Year. He was posthumously awarded the Meritorious Service Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal (with combat device.)

Sergeant Enis was a true American hero who was known to his family and friends as being the most genuine, selfless, talented, and humble man you would ever know. He was passionate about the outdoors and was an expert at hunting birds and big game as well as offshore fishing, spearfishing, and diving. He has left more lasting memories than most would in a longer lifetime.

Sergeant Enis is survived by his wife, Angela Drzewiecki; his mother, Dr. Colleen Enis; brother, Eddie Enis; and sister, Heather Hyatt

https://secure.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=188082461

William Ortega

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Navy Hospital Corpsman William Ortega.


Died June 18, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

Navy Hospital Corpsman William Ortega
Navy Hospital Corpsman William Ortega

23, of Miami, Fla.; assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.; died June 18 in Garmsir district, Helmand province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device while conducting combat operations.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/navy-hospital-corpsman-william-ortega/4679144

On Friday, Seaman William F. Ortega will return home.

After graduating from South Dade Senior High in 2005, he joined the U.S. Navy in May 2008 and moved to Camp Pendleton in California to train as a corpsman, which is similar to a medic.

“He wanted to deploy. He wanted to serve his country,” said friend Ana Miller, “and he did.”

Ortega died June 18, two days before Father’s Day, after a bomb exploded as he rode in a patrol vehicle “while conducting combat operations against enemy forces,” in Helmand Province, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.

At the start of training in California, adjusting to West Coast life was hard for Ortega, Miller said. But Ortega adapted and made friends, including Miller, 21, and her husband, Jeremy, a fellow corpsman.

Still, the 23-year-old longed for home.

“He was telling me that when he came back from his deployment, if he was given the choice of where to go, he was going to choose Miami,” said Miller.

Ortega’s relatives declined to comment, saying it was too difficult.

Ortega was deployed to Afghanistan, attached to the Third Battalion, First Marine Regiment, First Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force.

His battalion, nicknamed the Thundering Third, took full command of the province in May, when he was deployed overseas.

After the bombing, Ortega was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, NATO Non Article V Medal and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.

On Friday, his remains will be returned to South Florida in a private event for his family at Homestead Air Reserve Base. There will be a funeral Saturday in Kendall, after which his body will be taken to Arlington National Cemetery, where he will be buried July 9, 2010.

Navy Hospital Corpsman William Ortega
Navy Hospital Corpsman William Ortega

He is survived by his parents, William and Marianela Ortega; sisters Karla Ortega, Edna Ortega, Maria Ortega, Aracely Ortega and Evelyn Lopez; brother-in-law Juan Martinez of the U.S. Navy; grandmother Gladys Francisca Gutierrez and grandfather Jose Centeno.

https://arlingtoncemetery.net/wfortega.htm

 

Jessica Ellis

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis.


Died May 11, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis
Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis

24, of Bend, Ore., assigned to the 2nd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died May 11 in Baghdad of wounds sustained when her vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis remembered

The Associated Press

Jessica A. Ellis was friends with everybody in high school, said Bob Nash, her former principal.

“The typical barriers that separate certain types of people did not have any impact on her,” Nash said. “Whether they were a good student, a bad student, a top-notch athlete, she got on very well with everybody.”  Ellis, 24, a medic from Bend, Ore., was killed May 11 by a roadside bomb in Baghdad. She was assigned to Fort Campbell and was on her second tour of Iraq.

“She was a joy,” said Linda Conroy, who taught Ellis jazz, tap and ballet. “She was always helping, and she was just part of the group, a team player.” Ellis participated in cross country, swimming and track. She graduated high school in 2002 and attended Central Oregon Community College in Bend — majoring in education — for a few years before entering the Army. “You could always count on her,” said physical education teacher Bobbie Steninger. “Some people are good in a wide variety of ways, and she was the kind of person who always had a smile on her face.” 

Former Joint Chiefs chairman wears fallen Idaho soldier’s name

By Kathleen Kreller, The Idaho Statesman via AP

BOISE, Idaho — In an Oct. 2 interview with CBS “Sunday Morning,” Adm. Mike Mullen said he wears a bracelet with Jessica Ellis’ name in memory of all the service members who have died while he served as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.  “I’ve tried to keep that as close to me every single day, every waking moment,” Mullen told CBS. “It’s a reminder to others but also to myself. … We routinely go by her grave.”   “We were not aware he was wearing that,” said Steve Ellis, the father of Ellis. “It is quite a tribute to Jessie and who she was.”

In 2008, Steve and Linda Ellis stood at the Arlington National Cemetery grave of their 24-year-old daughter, an Army corporal.  The medic from Idaho died on Mother’s Day that year, killed by explosives on an Iraqi road. As the family mourned at Ellis’ simple white grave marker, they were joined by Mullen and his wife, Debra.  Mullen had spoken of Ellis’ sacrifice in his Memorial Day message to the nation that year.

Jessica A. Ellis was born in Burley and raised in Idaho, Oregon, Virginia and other states as her dad changed jobs with the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management. He now serves as Idaho director for the BLM.  “That’s part of having a father that works for the federal government: You get moved around quite a bit,” Steve Ellis said.

Still, Jessica thrived, running cross country and participating in track.  After high school in Lakeview, Ore., Ellis earned an associate of arts degree from community college and went to work as a wildland firefighter. Eventually, she was motivated to join the Army and work as a medic, stationed with the 101st Airborne at Fort Campbell, Ky.

She was twice deployed to Iraq — both times as a combat medic with the Army’s Screaming Eagles.

Sgt. Bruce Hillway, one of Ellis’ close friends from Fort Campbell, was present on both deployments, the first time in 2005. Ellis was friends with Hillway’s then-wife. “We both happened to be in a shopette one day, she saw me and recognized the name on my chest and just walked up an introduced herself and shook my hand,” Hillway said.  Ellis loved spending time with the couple’s young twin girls, he said. She was known in the 101st for her cheerful nature and desire to help her fellow soldiers.  “She was the type of person if she saw somebody who wasn’t smiling, she made them smile,” Hillway said. “She was that bright, friendly personality, and she made it her business to make people happy.”

Hillway would often have Ellis help train other soldiers in first aid. She was competent, funny and well-liked.  Both Ellis and Hillway deployed again in 2008. After the first deployment, Ellis became more serious and deliberative, Steve Ellis said.  Still, she was determined to help “her boys” in the 101st. 
She regularly accompanied road-clearing convoys to offer medical assistance. She witnessed several explosions, her father said. Known as “Doc Ellis,” she had volunteered that Mother’s Day to replace another medic on a road-clearing convoy.  Such missions take hours and are dangerous because the convoys travel slowly and make easy targets.  “She wanted to look after the soldiers,” Hillway said. “Other soldiers kind of saw her as their goofy little sister.”

Ellis was sitting behind the driver in an armored vehicle when three projectile bombs detonated. She died of wounds suffered in the attack.  Hillway was on an airplane returning from leave when he heard Ellis had been killed. He was one of the soldiers who fired a rifle salute at her Baghdad service; the crowd overflowed the small chapel and its foyer.  Ellis was posthumously promoted to corporal and awarded the Bronze Star and Purple Heart.

Though Jessica Ellis lived for just 24 years, she made an impact. She is memorialized in places beyond Mike Mullen’s wrist, including Idaho’s Fallen Soldiers Memorial.  Steve Ellis is grateful for such “honorable places” as Arlington.

Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis
Army Cpl. Jessica A. Ellis

“The section 60 families, they understand the journey,” he said. “It’s just difficult; you don’t get over it. It’s a journey.  “It is a club you didn’t want to be in but you can never resign. Behind every headstone out there in Section 60 is a family like ours going through this.”  Every story of another Idahoan killed in action reopens the wound, Ellis said.  Jessica Ellis is one of 59 Idahoans, and one of two Idaho women who have died since Sept. 11, 2001, in the war on terror.  “We never want to forget her and her sacrifices,” Steve Ellis said. “It changes the family forever. We are the price of freedom, are we not?”

 https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-cpl-jessica-a-ellis/3526801

 

Keenan Cooper

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper.


Died July 5, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper
Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper

19, of Wahpeton, N.D.; assigned to the 4th Squadron, 73rd Armor Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died July 5 in Yakuta, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device. Also killed was Spc. Jerod H. Osborne.

 

Soft-spoken soldier had long wanted to join Army

The Associated Press

Spc. Keenan Cooper often didn’t say much and just wanted to do his job, but that didn’t mean he was boring.

His jokes always seemed funnier because people didn’t expect it from the quiet guy, said Karley Vetter, a fellow 2008 graduate of Wahpeton High School in Cooper’s hometown of Wahpeton, N.D.

“He was the most soft-spoken person,” she said, “but you could tell the wheels were always going in his head.”

Cooper was an avid outdoorsman and loved going on archery shoots with his father, driving new Mustangs and playing with Coal, the family dog, said the Rev. Mike Adams, who’d known him for years.

Adams said Cooper had long wanted to be in the military.

“He knew when he was in fourth grade that he would be in the Army someday,” Adams said. “When he made up his mind to do something, he did it.”

Cooper was killed in a roadside bombing in Yakuta, Afghanistan, on July 5, the week before his 20th birthday and a month before he was slated to return home. He was assigned to Fort Bragg.

Survivors include April Travis, the girl he planned to marry in October; his parents, David and Heather; and four younger siblings, Dawson, Twyla, Gabriella and Carly.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-spc-keenan-a-cooper/4702313

Wahpeton soldier killed in Afghanistan

Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper
Army Spc. Keenan A. Cooper

By James MacPherson Associated Press Writer, Jul 6, 2010

An Army soldier from Wahpeton has been killed in Afghanistan, his family’s spokesman said Tuesday.

Nineteen-year-old Army Spc. Keenan Cooper was killed on Monday, said the spokesman, the Rev. Mike Adams, of Faith Church in Wahpeton.

The military did not release details of Cooper’s death to his family, Adams said.

“Everybody is pretty sure it was a roadside bomb,” Adams said. “That’s what was insinuated.”

Cooper was serving with the Fort Bragg, N.C.-based 82nd Airborne Division, said Adams, who said he had known Cooper since the soldier was eight years old.

Adams said the soldier’s parents, Dave and Heather Cooper, were notified Monday night. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Keenan Cooper would have celebrated his 20th birthday next week and was slated to complete his first tour of duty in Afghanistan next month, Adams said.

“He was just about ready to come home,” Adams said.

Cooper was engaged to April Travis and the couple planned to marry in October, Adams said.

The lifelong Wahpeton resident had returned to his hometown last month for a visit.

“He was in good spirits,” Adams said. “He was quite happy to see his fiancé and seemed happy to be in church. He was doing really well.”

Cooper’s parents and his fiancée were scheduled to travel to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware when his body is returned this week, Adams said.

“He knew when he was in fourth grade that he would be in the Army someday,” Adams said. “When he made up his mind to do something, he did it.”

Cooper, a 2008 graduate of Wahpeton High School, was friendly and soft-spoken, Adams said.

“He was a man of few words but if you caught him at the right time, he could be as funny as possible,” Adams said.

As of July 5, 2010, 16 U.S. service members from North Dakota or serving with North Dakota military units have been reported killed while on duty in Iraq. Five others were killed in Afghanistan.

https://bismarcktribune.com/news/state-and-regional/wahpeton-soldier-killed-in-afghanistan/article_b5c9f9a8-893c-11df-900e-001cc4c03286.html

 

 

Edward Acosta

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta.


Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta
Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta

Died March 5, 2012 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

21, of Hesperia, Calif.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Fort Bliss, Texas; died March 5 in La Jolla, Calif., of injuries sustained Dec. 3 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, when his vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-spc-edward-j-acosta/6568127

Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta, 21, Hesperia; killed by bomb in Afghanistan

May 27, 2012| by Ari Bloomekatz, Los Angeles Times

Although his family had urged him to go to college rather than the Army, he was determined. ‘He knew what he was getting himself into … but he didn’t doubt his actions for a second,’ his wife says.

Laura Acosta fondly remembers hunting with her older brother when they were younger, snowboarding in Mammoth and biking together in the Eastern Sierra.  She and Edward Acosta shared a room until she was 9. She looked up to him and jokingly called him “sausage toes” because his feet were chubby. The siblings grew closer when he learned to drive and took her to school each morning.

At 6-feet-6, Edward Acosta played offensive lineman for Hesperia Christian School before graduating from Hesperia High School. He joined the Army in 2008. While abroad, he was still protective of his younger sister, using snarky online messages to shoo away boys he thought were no good.

Then in December, the vehicle Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta was riding in was struck by a roadside bomb in central Afghanistan’s Wardak province, killing three other soldiers and severely injuring Acosta. To see her “huge brother in a bed, not even able to wipe his face and having limited function,” was very painful, said Laura, 19.  Acosta, 21, died on March 5 at the Veterans Affairs hospital in La Jolla from complications from his injuries.

“Those three months were definitely the hardest thing I’ve ever had to go through,” his younger sister said. “I think he’s just a hero for going through all of it.”

Edward Acosta was born April 30, 1990 in Ventura. When he was 3 years old his family moved to June Lake — east of Yosemite National Park — where his father, Ernest Acosta, worked as a fish and game warden. About eight years later they moved to Victorville and eventually to Hesperia.

Ernest Acosta tried to persuade his son to go to college after graduating from high school, instead of joining the Army. But it was a hard sell because Ernest Acosta had been in the Army himself, and so had one of Edward’s grandfathers.

“He just wanted to serve his country,” the elder Acosta said. “We tried to talk him into going into college, but he wanted to serve.”  “There is nothing in your lifetime that can prepare you for the loss of a child,” he said. “There’s just nothing that can prepare you to cope with a loss like that. It’s just so devastating.”

Edward’s older sister, Noelle, said there was a passage of Scripture, Isaiah 6:8, that was particularly important to him and influenced his thinking about joining the Army: “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I. Send me!'”

Edward had a tattoo of a cross with the passage number on his upper arm and “really believed that. It was in his heart and there was no persuading him,” Noelle Acosta said.

Edward Acosta’s first assignment after training was in Korea for about a year. When he came back on leave he married his girlfriend, Lindsay, before eventually being deployed to Afghanistan. They had a daughter, Emmalyn, in November.

Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta
Army Spc. Edward J. Acosta

“He was never scared of anything. He knew what he was getting himself into, and he knew there was a possibility he would never come home, but he didn’t doubt his actions for a second,” Lindsay Acosta said. “He was just so brave.”

Besides his father Ernest, sisters Noelle and Laura, wife Lindsay and daughter Emmalyn, Edward Acosta is survived by his mother, Sheryl Acosta of Hesperia; Aunt Maureen Green and uncle Rick Green of Ventura; and grandmother Betty McCarthy of Ventura.

https://articles.latimes.com/2012/may/27/local/la-me-edward-acosta-20120527

 

Antonio Burnside

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside.


Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside
Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside

Died April 6, 2012 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

31, of Great Falls, Mont.; assigned to 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died Apr. 6 in Mushaki, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by small-arms fire.

Blackfeet Nation pays tribute to fallen soldier

By Kristen Cates
Great Falls (Mont.) Tribune

In addition to close family and friends, the Blackfeet Nation is mourning the loss of one of its “warriors” in the wake of Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside’s death in Afghanistan on April 6.

Burnside (Many Hides, his Blackfeet family name), was killed when insurgents attacked his unit with small-arms fire in the Ghazni province of Afghanistan.

The 31-year-old, originally from Great Falls, Mont., leaves behind his wife, four children, parents and siblings, as well as a grieving Blackfeet Nation.

Tribal officials said that Burnside’s parents were on their way to Dover Air Force Base, Del., to retrieve his body and bring him home to the Blackfeet Reservation for services and burial.

“All Blackfeet hearts are broken today as we learn we must bury one of our warriors whose life was tragically cut short on the far side of the world,” said Blackfeet Chairman T. J. Show. “We are reminded how inadequate our words are when a warrior has made the ultimate sacrifice. Tony represents the best among us and our thoughts and prayers are with the family as they struggle to deal with the shock of this terrible loss.”

Tribe officials say that from an early age Burnside was active in Blackfeet tribal life, was a traditional dancer and grass dancer, and participated in Blackfeet traditional ceremonies. He sang with the Gray Horse Singers and studied Cree in school.

Burnside is the second Blackfeet warrior killed in the current conflict. According to the tribe, retired Army Master Sgt. William F. “Chief” Carlson was killed in the Konar province, Afghanistan, in 2003, shortly after leaving his Fort Bragg unit to work for the CIA.

“For 10,000 years, the Blackfeet have reserved our highest honors for warriors killed defending our homeland,” said Henry Butterfly, a tribal councilman and a Navy veteran. “As Spc. Burnside makes his final journey home, we await his arrival and reflect on the great pride he has brought the Blackfeet Nation. He served with pride, dignity, and integrity and we thank him for his service.”

Burnside (Many Hides) is survived by his father Bob Burnside, mother Annie Burnside (Many Hides), spouse Christine Burnside, daughters Ariana, Hartlynn, Angel and son Tony Jr., Sister Ramona and brother Milo, and grandparents David Chippewa Jr. and Marilyn Many Hides.

He was assigned to the 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, based in Fort Bragg, N.C.

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/army-cpl-antonio-c-burnside/6568150

Blackfeet Nation soldier killed in Afghanistan laid to rest

Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside
Army Cpl. Antonio C. Burnside

Posted: Wednesday, April 18, 2012  

U.S. Army Spc. Antonio C. Burnside, a member of the Blackfeet Nation of Montana who was killed in Afghanistan, is being laid to rest today.

Burnside, 31, was motivated to join the military after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, his mother said. He served one tour of duty in Afghanistan and decided to re-enlist in 2010.

“Mom, I’m proud to be a soldier,” Annie Burnside recall her son saying, The Great Falls Tribune reported. “There’s a brotherhood that you can’t understand.”

During that second tour in Afghanistan, Burnside was killed by small arms fire on April 6. His body was returned to the reservation yesterday for his burial.

“There are a lot of things I’ve faced in my life,” Annie Burnside told the paper. “And now I’m going through one of the greatest fears I’ve ever had — that’s what I’m facing now. Nobody can understand that but another parent.”

Annie Burnside said she’s grateful to her family, the Blackfeet Nation and others for supporting her as she grieves the loss of her son. Chairman T.J. Show will honor Antonio Burnside tomorrow when he plans to ask for a moment of silence at a hearing before the House Subcommittee on Indian and Alaska Native Affairs.

https://www.indianz.com/News/2012/04/18/blackfeet-nation-soldier-kille.asp

 

Michael V Johnson Jr

Since its inception, each month LHCP has honored a military service member who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Every box which is shipped from LHCP is labeled with information about the Honoree. The monthly Honoree’s story is attached to the box so others can read about those who have sacrificed their lives for our freedom. This month’s Honoree is Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr.


Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr.

Died March 25, 2003 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr
Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr

25, of Little Rock, Ark.; assigned to Naval Medical Center San Diego, 3rd Marine Division Detachment, Fleet Marine Force, San Diego; killed March 25 while tending to wounded colleagues in Iraq.

Among the photos that covered his mother’s coffee table are snapshots of Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael Vann Johnson Jr. the way his family remembers him: grinning in Mickey Mouse ears and waving at the camera.

“He was just a big kid,” said his sister, Janisa Hooks. “Mikey was a fun person. He liked to draw and he loved basketball, a real people’s person.”

Johnson, 25, was killed March 25 when he was hit by shrapnel while tending to injured colleagues.

He was raised in Little Rock, Ark., and graduated from the University of Central Arkansas. He and his wife, Cherice, lived in San Diego, where he was assigned to the 1st Marine Division.

Shortly before his death, his mother received a letter from him. “Mom,” he wrote, “I love you, and don’t be afraid if I don’t return, realize I’m in heaven with God.”

— Associated Press

Navy dedicates San Diego clinic to slain sailor

SAN DIEGO — Friends and family of Navy Corpsman Michael Vann Johnson Jr. gathered Sept. 17 as his Marine Corps recruit depot dedicated a medical clinic to the sailor, who was killed in Iraq.

“We hope that by naming the branch medical clinic after Michael Johnson, we’ll preserve the sacrifices and memories of Johnson and all those who served with him,” Lt. Del Signore said.

Johnson’s wife and members of his family were in California for the ceremony, where they watched as a new sign at the clinic’s front door was revealed, renaming it Johnson Hall.

Signore said several Marines from Johnson’s unit also attended. Afterward, members of the Navy band played “Anchors Away” and the “Marine Hymn.”

Johnson died March 25 when he was struck by shrapnel from a grenade while helping a wounded Marine. The Little Rock native was the first Arkansan killed in the conflict.

— Associated Press

https://thefallen.militarytimes.com/navy-hospital-corpsman-3rd-class-michael-v-johnson-jr/256539

Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr
Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael V. Johnson Jr

Fallen Hero HM2Michael V Johnson Jr

Navy Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Michael Vann Johnson Jr. was raised in Little Rock Arkansas and graduated from the University of Central Arkansas. “He was just a big kid,” said his sister, Janisa Hooks. “Mikey was a fun person. He liked to draw and he loved basketball, a real people’s person.”

After graduation, Michael joined the Navy. He was assigned to Naval l Medical Center, First Marine Division Detachment San Diego California. He was then as an assigned to Third Battalion Fifth Marines (3/5), in First Marine Division (1st MAR DIV) for the duration of the Iraq War. He was what is called MAP personnel (Medical Augmented Personnel). In March 2003, Michael was deployed to Iraq. He was put with Weapons Company in the CAAT Platoon. He traveled with his men in their Humvee and took care of them. On March 25, 2003 Michael was killed by a rocket propelled grenade that entered his Humvee and detonated. Michael was tending to a wounded soldier at the time

Shortly before his death, his mother received a letter from him. “Mom,” he wrote, “I love you, and don’t be afraid if I don’t return, realize I’m in heaven with God.” Michael was the first serviceman from Arkansas to die in the war in Iraq. The Michael Vann Johnson Jr. American Legion Post No. 74 was named in his honor. 

https://www.gofundme.com/26v3584s