Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Angelo A. Zawaydeh, Army, Private 1st Class -- Rest In Peace

Angelo A. Zawaydeh, 19

Army, Private 1st Class
Based: Ft. Campbell, Ky.
2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: March 15, 2006
Baghdad (southwest of), Iraq
Gender: Male
Hometown: San Bruno
High School: Terra Nova High (Pacifica)
Burial: Greek Orthodox Memorial Park, Colma, Calif.

From the LA Times:
When Angelo Zawaydeh of San Bruno, Calif., first told his parents that he wanted to join the military, they refused.

Not only were they worried about the dangers of their teenage son going to war, but they also had concerns about Zawaydeh, whose father is Jordanian, participating in a Middle Eastern war.

When Zawaydeh first brought up the idea to his parents when he was 16, the answer was simple, said his mother, April Bradreau. But two years later, he made his own decision. When he joined the Army, she said, "we asked, 'Why didn't you go to college?' And he said, 'I can't sit in the classroom anymore. I need to get up and do something.' "

On March 15, the private first class was manning a machine gun atop a tank at a Baghdad traffic control point when he was killed by a mortar shell that struck him in the neck.

Kevin Campos said his best friend, a graduate of Terra Nova High School in Pacifica, Calif., and others had vowed to enlist after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. "We decided that America was worth fighting for," Campos said. "We thought if we're going to live in this country and raise our families here, we had to do something before we started our lives."

But Bradreau, who with her husband, Akram Zawaydeh, received the news of their son's death on the eve of their 21st wedding anniversary, said her son had grown disillusioned with the war over time. "He thought we could let them [the Iraqis] fight their own battles from now on over there," she said.

Bradreau remembered her son as a respectful young man who always was willing to lend a helping hand.

"He died like he lived," she said. "He gave his life for others."
Find more about Army Private 1st Class Angelo A. Zawaydeh at SFGate 
and at St. Thomas More Church and Military Times and find remembrances and messages at 
Visit Private Zawaydeh's Guest Book.

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