Remembering The Fallen From Montana

memorialday16

 

Today, people throughout the country will gather together to remember, to honor and to pay gratitude to those who have served our country, for today is Memorial Day.  So much sacrifice has been made, so many tears shed, so much blood lost, our Nations treasure… its Warriors, have given so much, their families have endured so much.

So today we pay our respects to the Fathers, Mothers, Brothers, Sisters, Sons, Daughters, Friends and Loved Ones we have lost.

The Greek philosopher Thucydides once said, “The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it.”

Today I would like to share the names of the Warriors that my state (Montana) has lost since September 11th 2001, they are all Hero’s in my eyes and they each deserve to be recognized for their ultimate sacrifice for me, my family and my country.

 

 

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.

 

Army Spc. Jonathan A. Pilgeram

Died February 17, 2011 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

22, of Great Falls, Mont.; assigned to 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died Feb. 17 in the Ghaziabad district of Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using small-arms fire.

 

Army Pfc. Nicholas S. Cook

Died March 7, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

19, of Hungry Horse, Mont.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, Camp Ederle, Italy; died March 7 in Dab Sar, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire.

 

Army Sgt. Jeremiah T. Wittman

Died February 13, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

26, of Darby, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.; died Feb. 13 of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device in Zhari province, Afghanistan.

 

Army Staff Sgt. Thaddeus S. Montgomery

Died January 20, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

29, of West Yellowstone, Mont.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.; died Jan. 20 at Korengal Outpost, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained in a non-combat-related incident.

 

Army Pfc. Michael A. Rogers

Died November 27, 2009 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

23, of White Sulphur Springs, Mont.; assigned to the 210th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.; died Nov. 27, at Forward Operating Base Hammer, east of Baghdad of injuries sustained from a noncombat-related incident.

 

Navy Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class Andrew Scott Charpentier

Died July 23, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

21, of Great Falls, Mont.; assigned to the Navy Expeditionary Guard Battalion, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; died July 23 at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, Fla., from a non-combat related illness.

 

Army Sgt. Terry J. Lynch

Died June 29, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

22, of Shepherd, Mont.; assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.; died June 29 in Wardak Province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.

 

Army Lt. Col. Garnet R. Derby

Died February 9, 2009 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

44, of Missoula, Mont.; assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 8th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas; died Feb. 9 in Mosul, Iraq, of wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.

 

Marine Sgt. Trevor J. Johnson

Died January 27, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

23, of Forsyth, Mont.; assigned to 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died Jan. 27 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

 

Marine Cpl. Stewart S. Trejo

Died August 7, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

25, of Whitefish, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Maintenance Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.; died Aug. 7 while supporting combat operations in Karmah, Iraq.

 

Army Pvt. Timothy J. Hutton

Died August 4, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

21, of Dillon, Mont.; assigned to the 54th Engineer Battalion, 18th Engineer Brigade, Bamberg, Germany; died Aug. 4 in Baghdad of injuries sustained in a non-combat-related incident.

 

Army Sgt. James A. McHale

Died July 30, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

31, of Fairfield, Mont.; assigned to the 40th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany; died July 30 at National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Md., from wounds sustained July 22 in Taji, Iraq, when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

 

Army Capt. Andrew R. Pearson

Died April 30, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

32, of Billings, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas; died April 30 in Baghdad of wounds sustained when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

 

Army Pvt. Daren A. Smith

Died December 13, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

19, of Helena, Mont.; assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 89th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Polk, La.; died Dec. 13 in Baghdad of wounds sustained in a non-combat-related incident.

 

Army Staff Sgt. Yance T. Gray

Died September 10, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

26, of Ismay, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died Sept. 10 in Baghdad of injuries sustained in a non-combat-related vehicle rollover

 

Army Spc. Donald M. Young

Died August 8, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

19, of Helena, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas; died Aug. 8 in Baghdad of wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle during combat operations.

 

Army Staff Sgt. Travis W. Atkins

Died June 1, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

31, of Bozeman, Mont.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.; died June 1 in Al Yusufiyah, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his unit.

 

Army Spc. Michael K. Frank

Died May 10, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

36, of Great Falls, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died May 10 of injuries sustained in Baghdad, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during combat operations.

 

Army Pfc. Kyle G. Bohrnsen

Died April 10, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

22, of Philipsburg, Mont.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.; died April 10 in Baghdad of wounds sustained when his vehicle hit an improvised explosive device.

 

Army Staff Sgt. Shane R. Becker

Died April 3, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

35, of Helena, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Squadron, 40th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Fort Richardson, Alaska; died April 3 in Baghdad when his unit came in contact with enemy forces using small-arms fire.

 

Army Pvt. Matthew T. Zeimer

Died February 2, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

18, of Glendive, Mont.; assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.; died Feb. 2 in Ramadi, Iraq, of injuries sustained when he came in contact with enemy forces using small arms fire

 

Navy Construction Electrician 2nd Class Charles V. Komppa

Died October 25, 2006 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

35, of Belgrade, Mont.; assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 18, Detachment 0618 in Billings, Mont., and was serving with the 3rd Naval Construction Regiment, Multi-National Corps – Iraq; died Oct. 25 during enemy action while conducting combat operations in Anbar province, Iraq.

 

Marine Lance Cpl. Jeremy Sandvick Monroe

Died October 8, 2006 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

20, of Chinook, Mont.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force, Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii; died Oct. 8 from wounds sustained while conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Asad, Iraq.

 

Marine Cpl. Phillip E. Baucus

Died July 29, 2006 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

28, of Wolf Creek, Mont.; assigned to 3rd Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Twentynine Palms, Calif.; killed July 29 while conducting combat operations in Rawah, Iraq.

 

Army Capt. Michael J. Mackinnon

Died October 27, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

30, of Helena, Mont.; assigned to the 4th Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga., killed on Oct. 27 when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during convoy operations in Baghdad.

 

Marine Pfc. Andrew D. Bedard

Died October 4, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

19, of Missoula, Mont.; assigned to 3rd 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 Oct. 4 when an improvised explosive device detonated while he was conducting combat operations against enemy forces in Ramadi, Iraq.

 

Army Sgt. Travis M. Arndt

Died September 21, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

23, of Bozeman, Mont.; assigned to the 163rd Cavalry Troop, 116th Brigade Combat Team, 42nd Infantry Division, Montana Army National Guard, Missoula, Mont.; killed Sept. 21 in a vehicle accident during convoy operations in Kirkuk, Iraq.

 

Army 1st Lt. Joshua M. Hyland

Died August 21, 2005 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

31, of Missoula, Mont.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade, Vicenza, Italy; killed on August 21 when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during patrol operations, near Baylough, Afghanistan

 

Marine Lance Cpl. Nicholas B. Bloem

Died August 3, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

20, of Belgrade, Mont.; assigned to the 4th Reconnaissance Battalion, 4th Marine Division, Marine Forces Reserve, Billings, Mont.; attached to Regimental Combat Team 2, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force (Forward); killed Aug. 3 when his amphibious assault vehicle was attacked by an improvised explosive device while he was conducting combat operations south of Hadithah, Iraq.

 

Army Sgt. 1st Class Robbie D. McNary

Died March 31, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

42, of Lewistown, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 163rd Mechanized Infantry Regiment, Montana Army National Guard, Missoula, Mont.; died March 31 in Hawijah, Iraq, of injuries sustained while performing combat operations.

 

Marine Cpl. Raleigh C. Smith

Died December 23, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

21, of Troy, Mont.; assigned to 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif.; killed Dec. 23 by enemy action in Anbar province, Iraq.

 

Army Staff Sgt. Aaron N. Holleyman

Died August 30, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

26, of Glasgow, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group, Fort Campbell, Ky.; killed Aug 30 when his military vehicle hit an improvised explosive device in Khutayiah, Iraq.

 

Marine Cpl. Dean P. Pratt

Died August 2, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

22, of Stevensville, Mont.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.; killed Aug. 2 by enemy action in Anbar province, Iraq.

 

Army Pfc. Owen D. Witt

Died May 24, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

20, of Sand Springs, Mont.; assigned to the 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry, 1st Infantry Division, Schweinfurt, Germany; killed May 24 when his armored Humvee rolled over in Dawr, Iraq.

 

Army 1st Lt. Edward M. Saltz

Died December 22, 2003 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

27, of Bigfork, Mont.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Armored Division, U.S. Army Reserve, based in Giessen, Germany; killed in action Dec. 22 by an improvised explosive device in Baghdad.

 

Army Pfc. Kristofor T. Stonesifer

Died October 19, 2001 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

28, of Missoula, Mont.; assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Fort Benning, Ga.; killed in action when his UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crashed during a training mission, on Oct. 19, 2001, in Pakistan.

 

I hope I didn’t leave any names off this list, if I did please feel free to add to it. I hope next Memorial Day there are no new names to add to this list.

This was just my way of paying tribute to these lost Montana Warriors and to their Families.  And for all the other Warriors our Nation has lost, we must never forget their sacrifices. From the Soldiers who shivered and starved through the winter at Valley Forge to the doughboys crouched in the muddy trenches of France to the platoon who patrolled the hazy jungles of Vietnam and the young man or woman patrolling the mountains of Afghanistan, we must remember and honor them all.

Thank you for reading this and God bless our troops and God bless America.

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