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 1st Lt. Jaime L. Campbell.
A former Washington state rodeo queen and three Anchorage-area men were the four Alaska Army National Guard crew members who died in a weekend helicopter crash in northern Iraq, relatives and friends say. Family, friends and officials identified the victims as 1st Lt. Jaime Campbell of Fort Wainwright, Chief Warrant Officer Chester Troxel of Anchorage, and Specialists Michael Ignatius Edwards of Anchorage and Jacob Eugene Melson of Wasilla. All four were members of the Guard’s 1st Battalion, 207th Aviation Regiment. Four civilians and four other military personnel also were killed in the crash Saturday. Campbell, 25, and Troxel, 44, were piloting the UH-60L Black Hawk when the aircraft went down, Brig. Gen. Craig Christensen, the state guard’s commander, said Tuesday. Campbell had been living at the Fairbanks post with her husband. Army Capt. Sam Campbell also is in Iraq and will fly back with his wife’s body, said her mother, Miki Krausse of Ephrata, Wash. Between sobs during a phone interview, Krausse described Jaime Campbell as selfless and talented, an artist and expert horsewoman, the eldest of three daughters. While still in high school in Ephrata, she mastered her horse-handling skills so well she represented the state as rodeo queen. She enlisted in the Washington Army National Guard in 1999, joining the Alaska counterpart in March 2003. “When she decided to do something, it had to be her best,” Krausse said. “She was as beautiful inside as she was outside.” Campbell was the state rodeo queen in 1998, the same year she graduated from Ephrata High School as student body president.
She joined the Washington Army National Guard midway through her studies at Washington State University to help pay for school, and graduated with a degree in interior design in 2003, Campbell’s father, Jeff Krausse, told The Wenatchee World. She chose to stay with the National Guard to pursue an aviation career, he said. Jaime and her mother e-mailed each other every day. She also was close with her father, an Army command sergeant major who just returned from his own tour in Iraq. Jeff Krausse said he spent five days with his daughter two months ago during a short break. His last image is of her in the pilot’s seat when she flew him back to his post. “I never got to give her a hug goodbye,” he said, his voice breaking. The last time Miki Krausse heard Jaime’s voice was when she called to wish everyone a happy New Year. “She said she loved us and missed us and couldn’t wait to come home,” she said. “She always told us she was safe, that she could take care of herself. She said not to worry about her.”
Birth: Jun. 14, 1980
Death: Jan. 7, 2006, Iraq
1st Lt. Jaime L. Campbell of Ephrata, Washington is the daughter of Miki and Jeff Krausse. Born into a tradition of military service, her father, a Command Sergeant Major and her grandfather also served in the United States Army during World War II. Jaime grew up in Washington State in East County and moved to Ephrata during junior high before graduating from Ephrata High School where she was student-body president. She also graduated from Washington State University in 2002 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in apparel, design and merchandising. The eldest of three daughters, she was selfless and talented, an artist and an expert horsewoman. While still in high school, she mastered her horse-handling skills so well that she was selected the state’s rodeo queen in 1998. When Jaime decided to do something, it had to be her best. She was as beautiful inside as she was outside. She lived in Alaska for the last two years with her husband, Capt. Samuel Campbell, who had been stationed at Fort Wainwright with the Army. Jaime originally joined the Army as an enlisted soldier, but joined the National Guard in April 1999 to help pay for college. She liked the idea of flying so much she made aviation her career. She was proud to serve her country but nervous about her tour of duty. And she took comfort knowing that both her husband, Sam, and her father also were stationed in Iraq. Her father, a career military man, spent a year in Iraq before returning on Thanksgiving, just a week after last seeing his daughter. Meanwhile, Sam and Jaime were stationed just 150 miles apart in Iraq, and made daily phone calls when possible. They last saw each other the week before. Both Samuel and Jaime deployed to Iraq in September 2005. The pair had been married a little more than three years. They first met at the National Rodeo High School Finals in Pueblo, Colorado. Their paths crossed again at a Reserve Officer Training Corps camp at Fort Lewis, Washington. Jaime was a pilot on the UH-60L Blackhawk that went down in bad weather near the town of Tal-Afar. All four National Guard crew members and eight passengers aboard were killed. Her husband, Sam was also in Iraq when she died and he escorted her remains home from Iraq. Jaime is survived by her husband, Capt. Sam Campbell; father and mother, Jeff and Miki Krausse; and her sisters, Jenny Powers and Jessica Krausse.