Based: Ft. Lewis, Wash.
1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 31, 2009
Married, 1 child
High School: Central Valley High (Shasta Lake)
In late 2007, soon after marrying, he had this message tattooed on his chest: "Kirsten, I promise you the rest of my life."Read more about Army Specialist Tyler R. Walshe here, here and here.
When their daughter Karsyn was born last November, Kirsten said, "He would not let go of her. That little girl was Tyler's life. Everything about him changed. He wasn't living for himself anymore."
Walshe liked Army life and recently had reenlisted. On weekends, he was quarterback for the semipro Tacoma Invaders football team, a role he kept until right before his deployment. Originally, the Army had informed him that he would be sent to Iraq, and he went to language school to study Arabic. Then came orders to go to Afghanistan.
Walshe, who received the National Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon and Combat Infantry Badge, wrote his wife regularly from the war zone. Two of his letters arrived after he died, as well as a postcard he had addressed to his daughter.
"He had a love for life that I never saw in anybody," his wife said. "It didn't matter if he was taking out the garbage -- he was happy to do it."
In addition to his wife and daughter, Walshe is survived by his mother and stepfather, Dawn and Paul Vietti; and three teenage brothers. The young man had grown up using Vietti as his last name, but Walshe was his legal name and the one he used in the Army, his stepfather said.
Sgt. Evan Lunt, who served with Walshe in the 17th Infantry Regiment, escorted Walshe's cremated remains to his parents. Paul Vietti said a memorial service was held for his stepson on the baseball field at Central Valley High, where he once had pitched for the school team.