Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Tyler R. Walshe - Vietti, Army, Specialist -- Rest In Peace

Tyler R. Walshe, 21

Army, Specialist
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
Gender: Male
Hometown: Shasta
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."
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.
Read more about Army Specialist Tyler R. Walshe here, here and here.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Jonathan D. Welch, Army, Specialist -- Rest In Peace

Jonathan D. Welch, 19

Army, Specialist
Based: Ft. Lewis, Wash.
1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 31, 2009
Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan
Gender: Male
Hometown: Yorba Linda
High School: Esperanza High (Anaheim)
Burial: Sacramento Valley National Cemetery, Dixon, Calif.

From the Tacoma Washington News Tribune:

The deadliest month of the Afghanistan war ended with the deaths of three Fort Lewis soldiers.

The military confirmed Wednesday that Spc. Tyler R. Walshe-Vietti, 21, of Shasta, Calif., and Spc. Jonathan D. Welch, 19, of Yorba Linda, Calif., died when a bomb exploded during a dismounted patrol Monday in Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan.

As reported Tuesday, Pfc. Jordan Brochu, 20, of Oakland, Maine, was also killed in that attack. Family members said the three were killed by the same blast.

The three served in 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment. All nine of the brigade’s fatalities since it deployed in July have been soldiers from the battalion.

The deaths all came within two weeks of each other.
Read more about Army Specialish Jonathan D. Welch here with comments here and more here and here.
Army Spc. Jonathan D. Welch with his family, clockwise from top, his father, Ben Storll; brother, Danny Storll; sister, Mary Storll; and mother, Gina Storll.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Mitchell A. Lane, Army, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Mitchell A. Lane, 34

Army, Sergeant 1st Class
Based: Ft. Bragg, N.C.
2nd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 29, 2003
Dai Chopan (near), Afghanistan
Married, 2 children
Gender: Male
Hometown: Lompoc
High School: Lompoc High (Lompoc)
Burial: Arlington National Cemetery

Lane was awarded a posthumous Purple Heart at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C., adding to a long list of medals earned during his 12-year military career.
Lane's passion, adventurous spirit and interest in serving in the military started early, his parents said. The scrapbook he started as an 8 year old includes an Army recruitment advertisement, a U.S. Navy brochure and his application to begin hunter safety training at the age of 13. At 16, he added motorcycles to his list of passions.
He became an excellent marksman and swimmer, and eventually became an instructor in underwater warfare.
The Lanes are grateful for the stories of his generosity, courage, professionalism and fun-loving nature they've received from hundreds of people they've never met from all over the country, glad to add the memories of others to those of their own.
They've learned that their son shared his faith selflessly and used it to comfort others, including the mother of a fellow team member who was killed in action in June 2002.
"Mitch's words were so encouraging it was difficult not to smile and it was easy to love him and his comforting ways," the mother they've never met wrote the Lanes after their son's death.
Laurie Lane said people who knew her son well remember his beautiful heart, radiant smile and sparkling eyes.
Read more about Army Sergeant, First Class, Mitchell A. Lane here.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Saturday Night Day Interlude -- Doris

Palin In DC Via TX4SP

Blue skies, nothing but blue skies.
For those of you who don't go there on your own, lemme help you out here:

Texas for Sarah Palin gives us fine pics and backstage videos of our Governor, Mrs. Todd Palin, as well as the text of her speech at today's Restoring Honor gathering of real Americans.
You may still get your news from MLauer and KCouric, but most of us don't.
Is this the best Saturday in the land between Searchlight and election day or what?

Shabbat Shalom

Yeah, yeah, we're late again. We're on Arkansas time here, now, today. That explain it?
With the advent of the Internet, you can run an easy web search on almost any search engine for “Jewish slang words” and come up with millions of web sites that touch on the topic. From just a few of those sites, here is a short list for you to enjoy.  Be a Mensch and learn them all!
Shmendrik — This means that the person is a jerk, but MUCH bigger than a normal jerk.  He is the master of all jerks.
Tsuris — This refers to troubles, troubles that are so big that you beat your head in trying to pronounce this word to tell someone about them.
Yutzi — This refers to something or someone that is stupid.
Yiddishe Kup — This phrase literally stands for “Jewish head”.  Similar to that of butt head or get your Jewish head out of your Jewish backside.
Shiksa — This is what you will be called if you are unfortunate enough to be a Non-Jewish woman.
Shagetz — This what you will be called if you are unfortunate enough to be a Non-Jewish woman. Meshugeneh is a crazy, insane woman. You can also use the Jewish slang word klip, which stands for a gabby woman.

(Why are all these slang words mocking women, you might wonder? And where are the ones for men? You’ll have to explore some more Jewish Slang dictionaries and see if you can find them!)

Edgar Edelberto Lopez, Marines, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Edgar Edelberto Lopez, 27

Marines, Sergeant
Based: Camp Lejeune, N.C.
1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, II Marine Expeditionary Force
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 28, 2004
Babil province, Iraq
Married, 2 children
Gender: Male
Hometown: Los Angeles
Burial: Los Angeles National Cemetery, Westwood

Lopez, a 27-year-old sergeant, was killed in enemy action Aug. 28 in Iraq's Babil province, according to the Defense Department. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Lejeune.

Military officials gave his wife few details except that he was killed while trying to help Marines under attack. "The only thing they said was there was an explosion, and he was in one of the first vehicles in his unit," she said. "When he turned back to make sure everyone was OK, he got hit by a second explosion."

Relatives said that Lopez, a Los Angeles native, had been unsure of what to do after he graduated from high school. But one day he came home and told his mother, Ana Fajardo, that he had enlisted in the Marine Corps.

Although friends and family members had always seen a cheerful Lopez, his wife said, when it came to military duty he was businesslike. "I am very proud of him," she said. "He was a dedicated Marine, and he was very proud of that too."
Read more about Marine Sergeant Edgar Edelberto Lopez here.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Omead H. Razani, Army, Specialist -- Rest In Peace

Omead H. Razani, Army, Specialist -- Rest In Peace

Omead H. Razani, 19

Army, Specialist
Based: Camp Greaves, South Korea
1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 27, 2004
Habbaniya, Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: Los Angeles

For Omead
December 18, 1984 - August 27, 2004

Your presence matters.

Omead's spiritual inclination
On the other hand, I don't want to wallow in vengeance and blame. If only because I don't want to give stupid people in power in the world any more attention or credit. Don't want to reward pettiness and bad judgment.

I just want to meditate on Omead. He was spiritually inclined himself. I wonder what he would have been like here, now. What he would have thought at his own funeral. All those people there.

And I don't want to see him as a victim. Nobody made him join the Army. He really wanted to go. And he wanted the danger. He preferred line medic over anything else. He was fearless, it turns out. Despite all our families sheltering, low risk ways. He would have none of that. Perhaps one way or another, he would have made his exit to a higher plane. And I'm not kidding about that spiritual element. He was very non-attached in a Zen way. We would tease him about reading his "bliss quotes". And he just had that smile.

Do read more about Omead written by his cousin here, and more here.

Omead and HAji AqA (grandfather) on the Merry-go-round in happier days.

David Jimenez Almazan -- Rest In Peace

David Jimenez Almazan, 27

Army, Sergeant
Based: Friedberg, Germany
1st Battalion, 36th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 27, 2006
Hit, Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: Van Nuys
High School: Van Nuys Senior High (Van Nuys)
Foreign Country of Birth: Mexico
Burial: Rose Hills Memorial Park, Whittier
When he was sent to Iraq, Almazan, an immigrant born in Guadalajara, was working on his application to become an American citizen. "He is now officially one as of the day of his death," his wife said.
Almazan came to the U.S. with his mother and two sisters when he was 11, joining his father, who was already in this country.
Growing up in the San Fernando Valley, he was known as David Jimenez, reflecting his father's last name. In Mexico, his mother's maiden name, Almazan, was listed last on his birth certificate, a common practice there.
Jose Martinez, a childhood friend, said they would spend their summers together in the Valley. "We made a lot with a little. We had a lot of fun with the little money we had," he said. "He kept me out of a lot of trouble.... He kept me grounded."
Almazan graduated from Van Nuys High School in 1997. He attended Los Angeles Valley College and worked at Costco in Van Nuys.
Martinez said his friend was "taught from a very young age to be responsible for himself. He had to take care of other people. That got embedded in him.... He loved doing it. He was good at it."

Read more about Army Sergeant DavidJimenez Almazan here.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Hope Is For Chumps

H/T Mrs. Goldberg

Rogelio A. Ramirez, Lance Corporal, Marines -- Requiescat In Pace

Reposted from July 3, 2010.

Thinking about this picture taken at the Veterans Day Parade last November, standing curbside at the Ritchie Valens Rec Center in Pacoima, when the Ramirez family motored by, offering all of us there a moment to view this portrait honoring their beloved Lance Corporal Rogelio A. Ramirez, age 21.

Been thinking about the Ramirez family, thinking of their unspeakable grief, their familial pride, their own bravery, been thinking about young Rogelio Ramirez, since that day.
Independence Day weekend seems an appropriate time to post this Gold Star photograph.

Ramirez's father came to the U.S. from El Salvador. He had been a member of a local militia during the civil war there and tried to talk his son out of enlisting. But Ramirez was determined, working two years to retire debts and even removing a small gang tattoo from his hand with scissors.
--Times obituary
When he walked out that door, he walked out whole. He had himself together. He had purpose. He was determined. I wouldn't have taken that from him.
— Irene Ramirez, mother
Requiescat In Pace.

Rogelio A. Ramirez, 21
Marines, Lance Corporal
Based: Camp Pendleton
1st Battalion, 1st Marines, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 26, 2007
Saqlawiya, Iraq
Single, 1 child
Gender: Male
Hometown: Pasadena
High School: Pasadena High (Pasadena)
Burial: Mountain View Cemetery, Altadena

If you'd like additional words, or more information about Lance Corporal Rogelio A. Ramirez, look here, here or here.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

John L. Hallett, III, Army, Captain -- Rest In Peace

John L. Hallett, III, 30

Army, Captain
Based: Ft. Lewis, Wash.
1st Batallion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 25, 2009
southern Afghanistan, Afghanistan
Married, 3 children
Gender: Male
Hometown: Concord
High School: De La Salle High School (Concord)
Burial: Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Lafayette, Calif.

On Aug. 25, Hallett was among four soldiers killed when a roadside bomb exploded near their vehicle in southern Afghanistan. He was 30.

Hallett was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division at Ft. Lewis, Wash.

Also killed were Capt. Cory J. Jenkins, 30, of Mesa, Ariz.; Sgt. 1st Class Ronald W. Sawyer, 38, of Trenton, Mo.; and Pfc. Dennis M. Williams, 24, of Federal Way, Wash.

Hallett's father, John L. Hallett II, said the four men had gone on a mercy mission to a village suffering a cholera outbreak.

"Knowing my son, he volunteered," the elder Hallett said.

Soon after John Hallett III died, the Army released a statement from his wife, Lisa, who lives in DuPont, Wash.:

"Capt. John Louis Hallett III was an amazing father, devoted and joyful husband, thoughtful son, loving brother and inspiring friend. . . . He would always put the needs of others before his own. He was a patient teacher to our children.

"He had the warmest and most genuine smile. John would always make people laugh by his clever ways and kind humor. . . . John's amazing example and memories will live in and guide his three young children."

In addition to his wife, Hallett is survived by two sons, Jackson, who will be 4 on Dec. 31, and Bryce, who turned 2 in early September, the day before his father was buried at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Lafayette, Calif. Hallett also is survived by an infant daughter, Heidi, who was born in August and whom he never got to see.
Do read more about Army Captain John L. Hallett, III and follow links here, here and here.

Capt. Cory J. Jenkins, 30, of Mesa, AZ. -- Rest In Peace
Sgt. 1st Class Ronald W. Sawyer, 38, of Trenton, MO -- Rest In Peace
Pfc. Dennis M. Williams, 24, of Federal Way, WA -- Rest In Peace

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Heroes of Oklahoma -- Rest in Peace

Take a moment to take a look here at another collection of America's finest.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Nicanor Angel Alvarez, Marines, Corporal -- Rest In Peace

Nicanor Angel Alvarez, 22

Marines, Corporal
Based: Camp Pendleton
1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 21, 2004
Anbar province, Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: San Bernardino
High School: Pacific High (San Bernardino)
Burial: Montecito Memorial Park, Colton, Calif.

From the San Diego Union Tribune:
Fallen: Nicanor A. Alvarez, Marine Corps corporal
September 25, 2004
Age 22

Nicanor Angel Alvarez planned to go to college and study architecture after he left the Marine Corps.
But the 22-year-old from San Bernardino was killed in action Aug. 21 in Iraq's Anbar province, one of four Marines to die there that day.
Alvarez was a combat engineer assigned to the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division from Camp Pendleton.
He joined the Corps three years ago after graduating from Pacific High School and died in his second tour in Iraq.

Alvarez met his future wife, Sandra, now 21, four years ago, when they both worked at a shopping mall. They corresponded every day during his first tour in Iraq, she said, and he asked her to marry him in August 2003, when he returned home on leave.

"We talked about starting a family. We talked about the chances of us having twins," she told the Riverside Press-Enterprise.

Alvarez was born in Los Angeles and played soccer in high school in San Bernardino. He worked in a pizza restaurant when he was in school, and his main hobby was rebuilding a Ford Mustang convertible.

He also enjoyed playing practical jokes, the family said.

At a family gathering in Colton last year, his fiancee played a videotape of Alvarez saying he wouldn't return from Iraq for at least another year. Then he said he was hiding outside in the trunk of his car.

Sandra Alvarez said the couple discussed the possibility that he might be killed in Iraq, and he wanted her to finish school no matter what happened.

"He was the friend everyone would like to have," his brother Ismael Gonzalez told the newspaper.

Besides his wife and brother Ismael, Alvarez is survived by another brother, Mauricio Fregoso; and three sisters, Alma Gonzalez, Daisy Gonzalez and Kristel Ponce, all of San Bernardino County.
Read more about Marine Corporal Nicanor Angel Alvarez here and here.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Signage We Like-like

Okay, I'm living on the 6th floor,
working on the 4th floor,
poking around the 5th floor and lookee here:

Mesothelioma R Us
Or, nah, we're not in California any more.

Jason L. Paton, Army, Staff Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Jason L. Paton, 25

Army, Staff Sergeant
Based: Schofield Barracks, Hawaii
2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 22, 2007
Multaka, Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: Poway
High School: Poway High (Poway)
Burial: Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery, San Diego

Paton's mother, Kim Bilbrey of Poway, spoke briefly to her son on Monday and, as usual, he was talking about what he would do when he got home.

“He said he was very excited about getting married,” Bilbrey said.

Her only son was to have been back in Hawaii last month, but that was delayed when ... U.S. deployments were extended ... as part of the troop surge that began early this year.
Paton's decision to enlist in the Army after graduating from Poway High School in 2000 surprised his mother, but his decision to stick with his men did not.
“He was surfing one day at Black's and he just decided to join the Army,” Bilbrey said.
Once in the Army, Paton thrived, graduating from Airborne School and Ranger training and making rank quickly.
“You could see in Jason's personality a sense of duty to country,” said Wayne Branstetter, Paton's high school wrestling coach.
Despite the cachet of elite schools and the combat tours, Paton never changed when he can home to Poway.

“Everyone wanted to be around him. He was just so much fun. His laughter was contagious,” said Liz Reese, 25, who had known Paton since they were both 11.
“I want people to remember his strength, his devotion. How everyone was drawn to him,” Bilbrey said. “He was a happy person. He would do anything for people. He was a tough kid who had done a lot.”
Read more about Army Staff Sergeant Jason L. Paton here and here.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Musical Interlude -- Saturday Night Pop

Christopher L. Palmer, Army, Private -- Rest In Peace

Christopher L. Palmer, 22

Army, Private
Based: Vicenza, Italy
2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 21, 2005
Baylough, Afghanistan
Gender: Male
Hometown: Sacramento
High School: Cordova High (Rancho Cordova)
Burial: St. Mary's Catholic Cemetery, Sacramento
Pvt. Palmer, 22, was killed in the predawn hours of Aug. 21 near Baylough, Afghanistan, when an improvised explosive device exploded near his Humvee. A passenger in the vehicle as it patrolled the area, he was one of four soldiers who died in the blast.
He had been in Afghanistan since March, his mother said, serving a second tour of duty. Palmer had previously spent a year in Iraq.
Annie Palmer said her son left home for basic training at Ft. Benning, Ga., on Sept. 10, 2001. The following day, when hijacked airliners struck the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, she remembers knowing that her son would have to fight in a war.
"When Sept. 11 happened, I think part of me just went away," she said. The next time she and her husband, Clemmie, saw their son, in February 2003, he told them he was headed to Iraq.

At Cordova High School, where he graduated in 2000, Palmer played football and soccer and was a member of the wrestling team. He had a brown belt in taekwondo and enjoyed lifting weights.
In addition, "he loved to break-dance -- and he was quite good at it too," Annie Palmer recalled.

As a teenager, Palmer was quiet and polite, she added, always addressing those older than he was as "sir" or "ma'am." She remembered with pride the day she took him with her to work at McClellan Air Force Base, where she used to be a civilian employee.
Co-workers "kept looking at him and looking at me and they said, 'This is your son?' They couldn't believe he was the perfect kid.

"He was something," Annie Palmer said. "Everybody he met loved Christopher. He just had this magnetic personality."
In letters and phone calls from Iraq and Afghanistan, his mother said, he would tell his family of the strong sense of duty he felt toward his job. He also would give them his impressions of those countries.

"Coming from a land of plenty, he was just blown away on how some of the people lived" in Iraq and Afghanistan, Annie Palmer said. "He would say, 'They walk in the street -- kids with no shoes, scouring in garbage for food.' That really broke him up."
Read more about Army Private Christopher L. Palmer here, here and here.

Joseph C. Nurre, Army Reserve, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Joseph C. Nurre, 22
Army Reserve, Sergeant
Based: Weirton, W.Va.
463rd Engineer Battalion
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 21, 2005
Samarra (near), Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: Wilton
High School: Elk Grove High (Elk Grove)
Sgt. Joseph C. Nurre, 22, of the Army Reserve's 463rd Engineer Battalion was their only child, and the last thing Charlie and Leigh Nurre of Wilton, a suburb of Sacramento, wanted was to see him go to war.

Last Sunday, two military men came with the news that their son had been killed that day near Samarra, Iraq, when a roadside bomb hit his military vehicle during convoy operations.
"We cried and never stopped crying," said Leigh Nurre, a commercial real estate broker. "We had a son who was so special and so compassionate, and had such a huge heart."

The couple last saw their son July 13, when he left for Iraq for a second time after a two-week visit. "That was a God-given gift," his mother said. "He was so loving."
April 23, 2009
Joe I think about you all the time, I always think about the time we carried that dresser all the way to our barracks. Everybody was jealous especially Lt, your always in my prayers... PS. and the good eats from your dad. ;)~
david burkhart,
wheeling, West Virginia
Joe was a wonderful person. He was a terrific son. He always had a friendly smile and was a great storyteller. We will miss him dearly. — Charlie Nurre, father, about his only son
Visit Sergeant Joseph C.Nurre's Guest Book here and read more about him here
with a link to his MySpace pages here.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Shabbat Shalom -- My Yiddishe Tate Clarinet

Guillaume Quatravaux, Birthday Boy

Happy Birthday, mon ami.

Brian M. Wolverton, Army, Private -- Rest In Peace

Brian M. Wolverton, 21

Army, Private 1st Class
Based: Ft. Drum, N.Y.
1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry)
Supporting: Operation Enduring Freedom
Died: August 20, 2009
Kunar province, Afghanistan
Gender: Male
Hometown: Oak Park
High School: Oak Park High (Oak Park)
Burial: Pierce Bros. Valley Oaks Memorial Park, Westlake Village

After Wolverton graduated from high school in 2006, he spent 2 1/2 years at Moorpark College, where he became interested in cultural anthropology and earned his associate's degree.
In January, the Oak Park resident signed up for a six-year hitch in the Army.
Part of Wolverton's motivation was to continue an unbroken military tradition for men in his family, dating from his father's Army service to a great-great-grandfather's stint in the Union army during the Civil War, his parents said.
He is survived by his parents, who are both accountants and longtime Oak Park residents; and his 17-year-old brother, Michael. Funeral services were held Aug. 29 at Pierce Bros. Valley Oaks Memorial Park in Westlake Village.

At an early age, Wolverton was a fan of war action video games, such as "Call of Duty 4" and the Magic fantasy card game, his mother said. But track became the focus of his teen years. Later, while in college, he worked as an assistant track coach at his high school.

Wolverton wanted an Army career but planned to pursue a bachelor's degree, probably in cultural anthropology, through the GI Bill, his parents said.
Read more about Army Private Brian M. Wolverton here and here with many comments from loved ones here.

The remains of Private 1st Class Brian M. Wolverton of Oak Pakr arrives at Van Nuys Airport. He was killed while serving in the Army in Afghanistan.

Christopher Wolverton and his wife Miriam view the casket that contains the body of their son Private 1st Class Brian M. Wolverton, 21, arrive at Van Nuys Airport, August 27, 2009

Photos by Chuck Kirman / Star staff August 27
Here's a Ranger video from Wolverton's MySpace page:

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Shakere T. Guy, Army National Guard, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Shakere T. Guy, 23

Army National Guard, Sergeant
Based: Modesto
1st Battalion, 184th Infantry Regiment, 40th Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: October 29, 2005
Baghdad (southern part), Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: Pomona
High School: Pomona Senior High (Pomona)
Foreign Country of Birth: Jamaica
Burial: Riverside National Cemetery
Army National Guard Sgt. Shakere T. Guy was known among his fellow soldiers for his fun-loving sense of humor and his efforts to help the Iraqi people. He used his own money to buy the children toys, soccer balls, clothes and candy.
Born in Jamaica, Guy became a U.S. citizen in July 2004. A few months later, the 23-year-old Pomona resident was dispatched to Iraq as a member of the National Guard's 1st Battalion, 184th Infantry Regiment in Modesto.
Guy was one of two guardsmen killed Oct. 29 when a roadside bomb exploded near the Humvee they were riding in during a combat mission in Baghdad. Also killed was National Guard Capt. Raymond D. Hill II, 39, of Turlock, Calif.

Guy, who was engaged to be married, is survived by his mother, Donna Sanguinette, and a sister, Tracy Ann Smith, both of Pomona.

At an emotional memorial service for Guy and three other soldiers in the same company, including the battalion commander, who were killed within a few days, one friend recalled that Guy was beside him the first time they were attacked with explosives.

"I couldn't have asked for a better soldier by my side," the unidentified soldier said in a eulogy for Guy. "He performed very well at his assigned duties, whether it be as a gunner or driver. He maintained a high level of alertness, and was quick to point out weaknesses to help the team. Guy wore the uniform proudly.

Read more about Army National Guard Sergeant Shakere Taffari Guy here and here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Ramiro Chavez, 18 -- Hated By Many, Loved By Some

From the LA Times Homicide Report
Ramiro Chavez, 18
Died Aug. 14, 2010
Ramiro Chavez, an 18-year-old Latino, was shot and killed Saturday, Aug. 14, in the 500 block of Weber Street in Pomona, according to Los Angeles County coroner's records.
Authorities responded to a call of shots fired about 12:44 a.m., according to a Pomona Police Department news release. When officers arrived at the location, they found Chavez suffering from several gunshot wounds.
The Los Angeles County Fire Department was called, and Chavez was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
Then there are the comments left by those he left behind:
Boy u were hated by many and loved by some. You left an emptiness in many hearts and now we are left in pain. We just hope you are in a better place. We will miss u Ramiro. Now you are our guardian angel.
— skoo girl
Aug. 16, 2010 at 4:27 p.m.

— skoo girl ... you just summed up quite a bit about the character of the deceased.
"hated by many".
What a way to be remembered!
— syscom3
Aug. 16, 2010 at 10:14 p.m.
Look, the Homicide Report is on Twitter too, the old media using a new medium and tweetin' murders....

Hey, Ramiro Chavez, no matter what, rest in peace, hermano menor.

"Musical" Interlude -- It's Hard To Be A Liberal

Lovemelovemeloveme, I'm a liberal.

Another grateful Hat Tip To Tammy at Time Flies.

Harvey Emmett Parkerson III, Marines, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Harvey Emmett Parkerson III, 27

Marines, Sergeant
Based: Camp Pendleton
Battalion Landing Team 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (Special Operations Capable)
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: August 18, 2004
Najaf, Iraq
Married, 2 children
Gender: Male
Hometown: Yuba City
High School: Orland High (Orland)
Burial: Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery, San Diego

Harvey Parkerson III had two very different roles in his life. He was the battle-toughened Marine thoroughly dedicated to serving in a war zone. And he was the tender, doting dad who sent his wife a stream of love letters from Iraq.
"He said he had a job to do," said his wife, Amanda. "He felt like he was making a difference. But he saw it as an honor and not just a job."
When he was off duty or on leave, Parkerson couldn't get enough of his two sons, 11-month-old Harvey Parkerson IV and 6-year-old Matthew (from a previous relationship).
"He wrote me a lot of love letters, beautiful letters, all the time," said his wife, whom he married in November 2002. "He didn't [write] about the conditions in Iraq. He never complained."

In addition to his wife and children, Parkerson is survived by his father and stepmother, Harvey and Nancy Parkerson Jr. of Marysville; his mother and stepfather, Lori and Tony Moreno of Orland; two brothers; and two sisters. Burial will be at Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma, Calif.

~ Harvey Emmett Parkerson III Ceremony ~  
Son Matthew 6 With Mother Lori
Read more about Marines, Seargeant Harvey Emmett Parkerson III here and here.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

1000 Words -- Tammy Edition

From Tammy at Time Flies.

Felix G. Gonzalez-Iraheta, Army, Sergeant -- Rest In Peace

Felix G. Gonzalez-Iraheta, 25

Army, Sergeant
Based: Schweinfurt, Germany
1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: May 3, 2007
Baghdad (southern part), Iraq
Married, 2 children
Gender: Male
Hometown: Sun Valley
High School: San Fernando High (San Fernando)
Foreign Country of Birth: El Salvador
Burial: Arlington National Cemetery

Whether he was jumping into a river to save a sibling, sacrificing teenage fun to help his parents make ends meet or becoming the man of the family after his dad had a stroke, Gonzalez-Iraheta was considered a hero by those who knew him.
"He was my right hand," said his mother, Reina Gonzalez. "I'm very proud to know he died a hero trying to save other people's lives."
Gonzalez-Iraheta, a 25-year-old Army sergeant from Sun Valley, was killed in a mortar attack May 3 in Baghdad. Also killed was Army Spc. John Derek Flores, 21, of Guam. They were mechanics with the 1st Battalion, 18th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division in Schweinfurt, Germany, responsible for maintaining 200 vehicles and protecting the troops who ride in them.
Gonzalez-Iraheta, better known as "Gonzo" around the barracks, had led members of his unit to the safety of a bunker and was fatally wounded when he left to make sure no one else was in danger, the Army told the family.
Read more about Army Sergeant Felix G. Gonzalez-Iraheta here and in this fine piece posted by Charlie on Memorial Day, 2010, here.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Congrats To Contento

Memorable Moments in Blogsville
This is old hat to all of you, but Contento received his first hostile-hostile comment today.
Couldn't be happier.
The little post Obama Supports Shinto Shrine at Pearl Harbor upset reader Terri:
Terri said...
Oh for Gods [sic] sake - stop with the lies. George Bush, Jeb Bush and Poppy Bush would defend the right of the mosque in NYC.
August 16, 2010 7:19 AM
Heh. For Allah's sake indeed.
My yellow flags start flapping whenever "rights" are invoked. I'm more interested in responsibilites -- though these days I'm pretty much satisfied with simple good manners.
And if the Bush trinity were to defend Cordoba On The Hudson, well, I'll lie about them too.

To borrow from el Presidente: "This is America, Miss, and our commitment to lies must be unshakable."
Thanks, Terri, and don't stop stopping by.

Elvis Presley -- U.S. Army

Elvis Presley
January 8, 1935 – August 16, 1977
Rest In Peace.
Elvis drafted.