Sunday, May 1, 2011

Ramon C. Ojeda, Army, Specialist -- Rest In Peace

Ramon C. Ojeda, 22

Army, Specialist
Based: Schofield Barracks, Hawaii
84th Engineer Battalion, (Light) 25th Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: May 1, 2004
Amarah (south of), Iraq
Married, 1 child
Gender: Male
Hometown: Ramona
High School: Ramona High (Ramona)
Burial: Ft. Rosecrans National Cemetery, San Diego

From the LA Times:
Army Spc. Ramon C. Ojeda's decision to pursue a military career didn't surprise his family.

On vacation as a young boy, his family said, he was inspired by the sight of Mexican soldiers. As a son, he sought the respect of his father, who had served in the military. And as a high school student, he joined the ROTC, proudly donning a uniform so he could carry the American flag.
"He was the only one who had perfect creases in his pants," said his sister, Celia St. Germain of Ramona. "He always held the flag. It meant the world to him."

Ojeda, in turn, meant the world to his family, who described him as an affectionate son, brother, uncle and father.

"He was a very lovable person," said his father, Joaquin Ojeda of Santa Ysabel. "He would hug me. He would kiss me. He would sit on his mother's lap. I'm really sorry I won't get to hold him again."

Ramon Ojeda, 22, was killed, along with Staff Sgt. Oscar D. Vargas-Medina, 32, of Chicago when their convoy came under attack in Al Amarah, Iraq. They were members of the 84th Engineer Battalion, 25th Infantry Division (Light) at Schofield Barracks in Hawaii.

Born in San Diego, Ojeda grew up in Ramona, where he played soccer, fixed cars with his dad and road dirt bikes. His knack for mechanics served him well in Iraq, where he repaired heavy construction equipment.

According to his sister, Ojeda served in the same unit as his wife, Lesliee, whom he married in October. While the couple were away in Iraq, their 14-month-old son Angel has been staying with his paternal grandparents in Santa Ysabel.

Evangelina Ojeda, 33, of Anaheim said the last time she saw her younger brother in November, she realized he had changed.

"He was big, beautiful ... the perfect image of the family man," she said.

The last time her brother spoke to their father, she said, he knew his parents were concerned for his safety. "He just said, 'Don't worry about me because if God thinks it's my time to come home, then it's my time.' "

Evangelina Ojeda said her brother was especially close to their mother, Maria. "He used to run into the kitchen and grab my mother from behind and kiss her on the neck and fling her around in circles," she said.

Ojeda also is survived by a half sister, Linda Turner of Bakersfield.

Services will be at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Bonham Bros. Stewart Mortuary, 321 12th St., Ramona. Burial with full military honors will follow at 1:30 p.m. at Rosecrans National Cemetery in Point Loma, Calif.
Find messages and remembrances of Army Specialist Ramon C. Ojeda at Fallen Heroes.

Staff Sergeant Oscar D. Vargas-Medina -- Rest In Peace

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