Based: Ft. Lewis, Wash.
1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, (Stryker Brigade Combat Team) 2nd Infantry Division
Supporting: Operation Iraqi Freedom
Died: June 2, 2007
Baghdad (Amiriya), Iraq
Hometown: Los Angeles
We both went to school together at Taft High School in Woodland Hills, CA and we both enlisted the same day through the Army's DEP. Great friend, still remember when he couldn't do one push up, "one, one, one..." we will miss you bro.
— Juan Mendez Jr.July 9, 2010 at 4:04 p.m.
From Military Times:
Army Cpl. Romel Catalan
Died June 2, 2007 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom
21, of Los Angeles; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division (Stryker Brigade Combat Team), Fort Lewis, Wash.; died June 2 in Amariyah, Iraq, of wounds sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.
2 Fort Lewis Stryker brigade soldiers killed in Iraq
By The Associated Press
FORT LEWIS, Wash. — Two 21-year-old Stryker brigade soldiers from Fort Lewis have been killed in Iraq, the first reported casualties in June for the post that last month lost 20 soldiers in the country.
Spc. William J. Crouch, 21, of Zachary, La., died Saturday in Al Hadid when a roadside bomb exploded near his vehicle, The Department of Defense said in a release Monday.
On the same day, Cpl. Romel Catalan, 21, of Los Angeles, died in a separate attack in Ameriyah, the department said. He was killed when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.
Catalan enlisted in the Army on July 13, 2004. He trained at Fort Knox in Kentucky and reported to Fort Lewis on Nov. 16, 2004.
A member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment of the 3rd Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Catalan left for Iraq last June on his first deployment.
Crouch was a cavalry scout with the 2nd Squadron, 1st Cavalry Regiment of the 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division at Fort Lewis, south of Tacoma.
He joined the Army his senior year in high school. His desire to serve came from his father, James Crouch, a Baton Rouge policeman who died of natural causes when Crouch was 13, his mother, Kathy Rushing, said.
He wanted to be “in the thick of things ... on the front lines,” she said.
Rushing said casualty assistance soldiers from Fort Polk told her Saturday night that her son had been killed while on patrol.
Crouch’s younger brother, John Crouch, a reservist with a maintenance company stationed in Iraq, would try to join his brother’s body on the flight back to the U.S., Rushing said.
“We’re hoping he’ll be able to bring his brother home,” she said.
The 4th Brigade has lost 10 soldiers since leaving for Iraq in April on what has since been extended to a 15-month tour in the country.
On Tuesday, it plans a memorial service at Fort Lewis for Staff Sgts. David Kuehl and Kristopher Higdon, Pfc. Robert Worthington, and Cpl. Mathew LaForest.
The four were among 20 Fort Lewis soldiers killed in multiple attacks last month, the deadliest for the post — as well as for troops with ties to the state — since the war began in March 2003.
Romel Catalan portrait found here at Hero Paintings
Go here to find this potograph of Army Specialist Romel Catalan..
Army Specialist Romel Catalan previously remembered at Boom3.