Showing posts with label Mississippi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Mississippi. Show all posts

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Vietnam veteran taken from pauper's gave to proper burial

Veterans band together to give Vietnam vet a proper burial

Fairfield Citizen
August 24, 2019

"We had so many mixed emotions because of things that had happened over the years," Carla said. "Even today, we still have so many questions and regrets that we didn't force him to talk to us. We would reach out to Billy, and he would ignore our phone calls. Or if he answered the phone and realized it was us, he would hang up on us. It was just really bad. But we loved him nonetheless."

COLUMBUS, Ga. (AP) — Billy Harold Watts was a decorated and disabled Vietnam War veteran. He had six children, 14 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

After collapsing in early June while home alone in Marion County, the 70-year-old lost his battle with lung cancer on Father's Day in a Columbus hospice.

Estranged from his family, no next-of-kin was found before he was buried in a pauper's grave.

But through a remarkable series of events, his family was eventually reached and local veterans were alerted. They, along with other caring folks in the community, rallied together to have his body exhumed for a proper burial: a funeral with military honors in his hometown of Oxford, Mississippi.

"It was just a blessing after a blessing at the end of all of this," said daughter-in-law Carla Watts of Jackson, Tennessee.

Billy served for three years active-duty in the U.S. Marines Corps. He earned two Purple Hearts, a National Defense Service Medal, a Vietnamese Service Medal, a Vietnamese Campaign Medal and a Combat Action Ribbon. He was a private when he was honorably discharged in 1970 at age 21.

Although he wasn't diagnosed, Billy had symptoms associated with post-traumatic stress disorder and was "highly medicated by the VA," Carla said. "When we cleaned Billy's house out, we took 26 bottles of narcotics to the sheriff's department and turned them in."

He and his last of six wives divorced in 2001, she said.

"Billy was very much a loner," she said.
read it here

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Columbus Air Force Base Major drowned on cruise ship

Air Force Major Drowns in Pool Aboard Cruise Ship

Sun Sentinel
By Ron Hurtibise
18 Jun 2019

An Air Force major drowned in a Caribbean Princess cruise ship pool Friday morning, the Broward Medical Examiner's Office said.

Stephen Osakue, 37, worked for the Air Force as a research pharmacist, according to a statement by the Medical Examiner's Office on Monday. Osakue was based at Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi.

In an email statement, Princess Cruises spokesman Nagin Kamali said Osakue was found unresponsive in one of the ship's swimming pools about 5:15 a.m. Friday as the ship, which sails out of Port Everglades, was on the sixth day of a seven-day Western Caribbean voyage.

The ship's medical personnel were unable to revive him, Kamali said. "Appropriate authorities were notified and conducted an investigation. A final determination is pending, however authorities have indicated that this incident appears to be accidental."
read more here

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Girl with fake ID, an affair and Police Officer committed suicide

“All of you should be ashamed”: Family of JPD officer who killed self over accusation of teen’s rape says he was a good man

WLBT 3 News
By Morgan Howard and Mary Grace Eppes
May 31, 2019

The family claims that Hollins met the teenager outside of a 21 and over club in Jackson and that he had no idea she was underage.
JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The family of Jackson Police Officer James Hollins says their son was a good man and is calling out attorney Lisa Ross for lying after the officer committed suicide amid rape allegations.
According to Jackson Police Chief James Davis, the 29-year-old officer shot himself on I-220 Monday afternoon after allegations surfaced that he sexually assaulted a 15-year-old girl.

According to the child’s attorney, Ross, the 15-year-old was approached by Hollins and befriended. She added that the incidents took place several times a week over the six month period and there are several sexually explicit videos of the officer with the minor in the back of his patrol car.

The teen’s mother caught onto the misconduct and the family and Ross reported it to the police chief last weekend.

Hollins’ father and stepmother posted on social media in the days after the incident, saying their son was one of the best police officers that JPD ever had, that he was a veteran, a great daddy and was about to be married.

“James, a good man and a great father and someone who fought for each of you as Americans, was devastated when he found out she was 16! He had no idea she was not an adult! And after he found out he could not live with himself nor bear the thought that he might be found guilty in spite of what he knew to be true about this situation. He could not bear the thought that he might not be able to be a police officer anymore. All he ever wanted to be was an officer. He loved protecting people. He loved serving. And he could not bear the thought that this mistake might cost him his family," they wrote on Facebook.
“He made a mistake as young people do by allowing himself to be seduced by a woman (as she claimed and appeared to be when he met her as she was leaving from a 21+ club). This wasn’t going on for 6 months!" the family continued. "This 16 year old (NOT 15, lying lawyer Lisa Ross!) has a fake ID, a fake name, and not a single one of you would have questioned whether she was of age!”
read more here

Friday, December 14, 2018

Man going to jail after stealing veteran's ID...and benefits

Mississippi man gets 3 years for stealing veteran's ID

Published: December 14, 2018
Prosecutors say Bush used the name, Social Security number and other identifiers of the veteran to receive narcotics, medical care, medical equipment and housing help from the VA Department between 2005 and 2018.
JACKSON, Miss. — A Mississippi man has been sentenced to three years in prison for stealing the identity of a U.S. military veteran and using it to get more than $130,000 in benefits.

News outlets reported Senior U.S. District Judge Tom S. Lee on Thursday also ordered 56-year-old Tierun Bush of Jackson to pay full restitution to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
read more here

Monday, October 15, 2018

Seabee shot and killed at Keesler Air Force Base.


Officials tell news outlets that Builder Constructionman Grace Kayla Davis-Marcheschi died early Saturday morning at military housing belonging to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi.
The 23-year-old Davis-Marcheschi is originally from Oregon.

Navy: Seabee shot and killed in southern Mississippi

Associated Press
October 15, 2018

BILOXI, Miss. — The Navy says a sailor has been shot and killed in southern Mississippi. News outlets reported the shooting happened early Saturday morning at military housing belonging to Keesler Air Force Base. 

The shooting did not take place at Naval Construction Battalion Center Gulfport but the Seabee served there. (Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class George M. Bell/Navy)

Spokesman Brian Lamar said the dead sailor was assigned to the Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulfport.
read more here

Friday, April 20, 2018

Disabled Veteran needed new shower...contractor took money after gutting bathroom

Action Report: Handyman takes money, leaves disabled vet without a working shower
By AJ Giardina, Sports Anchor/Action Reporter
April 19th 2018

Sixty-year-old Army Veteran James Taylor is confined to a wheelchair and was hoping to have a roll-in accessible shower built in his home.

He says a real estate agent recommended a handyman. "They came right over, about a day later. Went in, look at it. We got it," said Taylor.

He recalled giving the man a thousand dollars down to begin the work. "They took the old tub out, the old shower out and that's it, " Taylor described.

Taylor says the workers left the job three weeks ago and returned on Monday to pick up a power saw. He told a neighbor about the job left undone.

"She came over the same day, went up in, to cry and said Mr. Taylor they just messed you up, "Taylor said. "They just did a chop chop job. This wasn't going to work, no way."
read more here

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Shepherd of the Gulf, HUD and the VA help veteran say "I'm home."

Army vet moves into apartment after 5 years of living homeless
By Desirae Duncan
Saturday, February 17th 2018

Sometimes getting used to a new place takes some time.

"What's it like? Come back in six months, and you'll see a bigger grin on my face," said Clint Saucier.

It takes even more time when it’s the first time you've had somewhere to call home in more than five years.

"Now I can start buying food, and keep it, and not worry about raccoons eating it," Saucier laughed. "That's a story within itself."

Saucier is an army vet, and since 2012, the woods were his home. But, that changed on Monday.

"It's been a struggle, but we're here now."

Through HUD and the VA, he was able to land a place to live in Biloxi. Now he has running water, neighbors, and a bed to call his own.

"You might call me lazy. That part is true, but I'm reacclimating to my bed. But it’s going to be mine, it’s going to be mine," he said.

On Saturday, he got more furniture to claim.

Founder of Shepherd of the Gulf Linda Favre made the special delivery. She dedicated her life to helping the homeless. It's a mission she makes sure to see all the way through.
read more here

Monday, October 2, 2017

Two Pilots Killed in Cherokee National Forest Navy Jet Crash

2 pilots killed in Navy training jet crash in Tennessee
Travis Dorman and Hayes Hickman
Knoxville (Tenn.) News Sentinel
Published Oct. 2, 2017

TELLICO PLAINS, Tenn. — Both pilots aboard a Navy training jet that went down in Cherokee National Forest have been confirmed dead, military personnel said Monday.

The T-45C Goshawk, attached to Training Squadron Seven (VT-7), was the same aircraft reported missing Sunday from the Naval Air Station in Meridian, Miss., according to Lt. Liz Feaster, public affairs officer for the chief of Naval Air Training. Military personnel arrived in the Cherokee National Forest early Monday to begin investigating the crash.

The names of the pilots, an instructor and a student, are being withheld for 24 hours after the notification of next of kin.

The crash site is believe to be about 15 miles southeast of Tellico Plains and 2 miles from the Tennessee-North Carolina border near the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency's Tellico Trout Hatchery, about 500 miles from Meridian.
read more here

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Vietnam Veterans Film "The Lost Homecoming"

‘They were fighting in something the public didn’t support.’ Filmmakers hope documentary gives them a voice

Sun Herald
Tammy Smith
September 17, 2017

In “The Lost Homecoming,” about 45 Vietnam War veterans, many of them from the Mississippi Gulf Coast, talk about their experiences both in country and when they returned to the States. Dawley, who lives in Diamondhead, produced and codirected the one-hour program, and Lenny Delbert of New Orleans is co-director and the filmmaker.

‘The Lost Homecoming: When Our Vietnam Veterans Came Home’ will air on WYES on Sunday night at 10 p.m. Courtesy WYES/Pan Am Communications
As a Veterans Administration psychologist, Harold Dawley heard many stories of war experiences and the aftermath of service.
But one story haunted him for four decades. He finally has been able to use one young man’s painful struggle to tell the story of a generation that felt torn apart.
“The Lost Homecoming: When Our Vietnam Veterans Came Home,” will be aired on New Orleans PBS station WYES at 10 p.m. Sunday, Sept, 17, about a half hour after the first episode of Ken Burns’s documentary series “The Vietnam War” airs. 

“They were fighting in something the public didn’t support, and so they really felt defeated,” Dawley said. 
The story that stayed with him was that of a young African American man from a small Mississippi town. 
“His best friend in Vietnam was a young white man, and he was killed right beside him,” Dawley said. “The thing that carried him through his time in service was the thought of his homecoming. He made sergeant. When he was headed home, he was looking outside the window of the bus and thinking about what people would say.” 
When the bus stopped in his hometown, the white man who owned the service station there looked at him, finally recognized him and said, “Well, boy, I see you made it back OK.” 
“He didn’t know that was going to be all the homecoming he was going to get,” Dawley said. The rejection the young man felt affected several aspects of his life. He became a drug addict, and his marriage fell apart.
read more here 

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Florida Marine Killed in Plane Crash

Florida Marine among 16 killed in Mississippi military crash

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Marine Corps Cargo Plane Crash: At Least 16 Dead

UPDATE from (CNN) Fifteen Marines and a Navy corpsman who were killed when their transport plane crashed in the Mississippi Delta were on a training flight moving personnel and equipment from North Carolina to California, a Marine Corps spokesman said Tuesday.

Marine Corps cargo aircraft crashes in Mississippi, killing at least 16
Washington Post
By Thomas Gibbons-Neff
July 10, 2017

A Marine Corps cargo plane often used for hauling fuel and supplies crashed in western Mississippi Monday night, killing at least 16 people, local officials said.

Fred Randle, director of emergency management for LeFlore County, said 16 bodies have been recovered from the crash site.

In a brief statement, the Marines said that a “KC-130 experienced a mishap the evening of July 10.” No other information was provided. In an email, Marine Corps spokeswoman Capt. Sarah Burns confirmed that the statement correlated to the crash in Mississippi.

Mississippi Emergency Management Agency Director Lee Smithson told the Clarion-Ledger that the aircraft crashed on the Leflore-Sunflower county line, a rural stretch of woods and fields with dense underbrush and vegetation about 85 miles north of Jackson. Earlier, Sheriff Ricky Banks told the Ledger that five of the crew members were confirmed dead. It is unclear where the plane took off from.
read more here


General: Plane developed in air problems that led to fatal crash

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Vietnam Veteran Gets Final Wish, Motorcycle Escort While Still Alive to Enjoy It

Final wish: Vietnam vet granted motorcycle escort 
WLOX News 
By Michelle Masson 
June 26, 2017

Ladner said deBie is overwhelmed and happy after seeing the large crowd of people who turned out to support him. (Photo source: WLOX)
A terminally ill Vietnam veteran received his final request Monday, as dozens of bikers from all over the Southeast escorted him to the Biloxi VA hospital from Gulfport Memorial.

Hancock County resident Teresa Ladner said she and her family have taken in Army veteran Martin deBie as their own for the past several years.
"He's just so happy that everybody came out for him and showed him he's not alone. I just need to let him know he's not forgotten. None of the veterans are. His family gave up on him, but we didn't," said Ladner.
Ladner said deBie went to the hospital for a broken hip a month ago, only to be diagnosed with cancer that had spread throughout his body.
He was being treated at Memorial Hospital Gulfport, but needed to be transferred to the Biloxi VA Hospital.
When deBie knew he'd be moving locations, he requested an escort from biker groups, like the Patriot Guard Riders, Bikers for Trump, and the Christian Motorcycle Association. Ladner helped make it happen.

"There's no words to describe it, but it's a wonderful experience," said deBie.

read more here

Monday, May 8, 2017

Motorcycle Crash Claimed Life of Navy Seabee

Navy Seabee Identified As Victim Of Fatal Motorcycle Crash
Associated Press
Published: May 8, 2017

BILOXI, Miss. (AP) – A Navy Seabee stationed in Gulfport has been identified as the man who crashed his motorcycle on a state highway and died.

The Sun Herald reports that Harrison County Chief Deputy Brian Switzer says 27-year-old Jimmy Truong, of San Diego, lost control of the bike and went over an embankment on Saturday.

Authorities say he was wearing a helmet and protective gear.
read more here

Monday, January 9, 2017

Veterans 2017 National Veterans Golden Age Games

Applications to be accepted for 2017 National Veterans Golden Age Games

Event Takes Place in Biloxi, May 7-11

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will accept applications from Veterans interested in competing in the 2017 National Veterans Golden Age Games beginning Feb. 1. Veterans ages 55 and older and enrolled in VA health care may complete applications online at Applications will be accepted through March 1.
“VA is committed to offer sports and fitness as an integral part of a successful healthcare program, and I encourage every eligible Veteran to take advantage of this opportunity,” said Carla Carmichael, National Veterans Golden Age Games director. “There are significant health benefits to leading an active lifestyle, and in keeping with the Games motto, we want every Veteran to achieve 'Fitness For Life.’”

The 2017 National Veterans Golden Age Games will take place in Biloxi, Mississippi, May 7-11. Nearly 800 athletes are expected to compete in the national multi-sport competition for senior Veterans, embracing the “Fitness for Life” motto. The event encourages participants to make physical activity a central part of their lives, and supports VA’s comprehensive recreation and rehabilitation therapy programs. Competitive events include air rifle, badminton, boccia, bowling, cycling, golf, horseshoes, nine ball, powerwalk, shuffleboard, swimming, table tennis, and track and field. Exhibition events include: air pistol, archery, basketball, blind disc golf and pickleball. 

VA research and clinical experience verify that movement and exercise are important to maintaining good health, speeding recovery and improving overall quality of life. The games encourage participants to continue in local senior events in their home communities and every other year serve as a qualifying event for competition in the National Senior Games. VA Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System will host this year’s games. The Gulf Coast Veterans Health Care System provides care for more than 50,000 Veterans throughout Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida.

For more information visit and follow VA Adaptive Sports on Twitter at @VAAdaptiveSport or on Facebook at

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Dying Vietnam Veteran Continues to Fight VA For Benefits

After fighting in Vietnam, he struggles with PTSD, the VA – and a terminal diagnosis
News and Observer
Michael Doyle
November 23, 2016
“I did the very best I could for my country,” Sosa said.
U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims Judge Mary J. Schoelen
The Gulfport, Mississippi, resident couldn’t escape them. Shards of what happened in South Vietnam in 1966 burst inside the 78-year-old Army veteran, shredding his peace of mind, he says.

For years, though, Department of Veterans Affairs examiners repeatedly denied Sosa’s claim of suffering from service-connected post-traumatic stress disorder. Inadequate evidence, one examiner said. Too vague, said another. Unsupported by “objective test results,” ruled a third.

Now, a specialized federal court for veterans has given Sosa another fighting chance to obtain the diagnosis he’s been seeking. If he succeeds this time, his VA benefits will increase, as will, perhaps, this terminally ill man’s belief in the system that so far has frustrated him.

“I am sorely disappointed in the VA,” Sosa said in a telephone interview. “They didn’t do nothing for me.”

Time, for Sosa, is getting short.

The retired commercial artist has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. He says doctors have given him just several months to live.

At one point, thinking about a potential increase in VA benefits, he imagined taking a vacation with his wife, Sheryl. Now, having given up morphine because of the hallucinations, he ranks his pain at 8 on a 10-scale, and future planning is stripped to the bone.

“My main concern: not to leave my wife in (bad) financial circumstances,” Sosa said.

Sosa started seeking post-traumatic-stress disability compensation benefits more than a dozen years ago, launching a prolonged process that has since carried him through myriad medical exams, administrative hearings and court proceedings.

“The court notes that (Sosa’s) claim has been pending since 2004 and has been remanded by the board three times for additional development,” Schoelen wrote, adding pointedly that she “regrets that this claim must be remanded to the board but expects that the secretary (of veterans affairs) will handle this claim in an expeditious manner.”

Judge Schoelen, in her 12-page ruling, called that assessment inadequate, in part because it failed to properly consider Sosa’s own account of what he’d experienced. Her decision bounces Sosa’s application back to the Board of Veterans Appeals, where a new review will have to race against Sosa’s decline.
read more here

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Mississippi Soldier Died During Training in Hawaii

Hawaii soldier killed in training exercise
Associated Press
Nov. 4, 2016

HONOLULU (AP) — The soldier who died during a training exercise in Hawaii was a 26-year-old combat engineer from Mississippi, the U.S. Army said Friday.

Sgt. Renardo Deshun Dukes, of Pachuta, Mississippi, was killed Thursday in a training incident on the island of Oahu. 

The Army didn't release additional details about his death, saying Army authorities are investigating.
read more here

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Two Mississippi Sailors Committed Suicide in Less Than A Week

NCBC amps up suicide prevention message
WDAM 7 News
By Mike Lacy, Reporter
June 16th 2016

"Fifteen active duty Navy personnel have died by suicide in 2016"
Officials with the Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulfport amp up call for early intervention in wake of two suicides in less than a week. (Photo source: WLOX News)
GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Two sailors at the Naval Construction Battalion Center took their own lives in less than a week.

One sailor took his own life on June 10, and the second jumped off the top floor of a Gulfport parking garage five days later.

Base officials say all the resources that can help prevent suicide are there - suicide prevention is a priority at the Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulfport.

But those resources - medical, mental and spiritual based - do nothing if no one reaches out.

“There are so many more now than there used to be resources available,” said Paula Ingram, education services facilitator at Fleet and Family Support Center. “All we can do is inform people but we cannot make them come in.”

Although personnel receive training, Ingram believes some military members are worried that reaching out may affect their career.

“They know about the resources....They’ve heard the training so many times, they can give it,” Ingram said. “What keeps somebody from reaching out to the resources, I don’t know.”
read more here

WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Homeless Veteran Hasn't Lost Faith After 20 Years

Homeless veteran hopes faith can pull him through holidays and beyond
Mike Lacy
Posted: Dec 25, 2015
“I am a Christian man,” Holton said. “I don’t know if people want to hear that. But I believe in God and God still takes care of me.....My only hope is Christ. I mean, that’s all I got. That’s gotten better. I mean. To know you’ve got somebody that cares for you.”
A public rest stop is Chuck Holton’s neighborhood on Christmas day, his SUV is his home and there's no celebration. There never is.

The 51-year-old former Navy firefighter and Marine has lived this way for 20 years.

“When I got out in 1995, I can tell you I never thought I’d be where I am now,” Holton said. “Never thought I’d get down into this deep slump.”

Holton moves according to the season, and he’s been all over the country. Most of the time, he is rousted from his sleep as he bunks. He has a veterans disability pension that allows him to buy meager supplies.

So far, Holton has found friends - including police officers and security guards - who allow him to shift around the Mississippi Interstate rest areas along I-10.
read more here - Jackson, MS

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Navy Veteran Swimming 2,552 Miles For Fallen Soldiers

Navy vet swimming 2,552 miles for fallen soldiers
Quad City Times
By Brian Wellner
August 21, 2015
"When someone dies, people say move on and get over it," Ritter said. "In my world, he would want us to remember his life. Part of his life is something he gave. We are the people who can continue to carry that on." Barb Ritter
Navy veteran Chris Ring of Legacies Alive stops to look at the path ahead on Friday near Bettendorf on the Mississippi River. He's in the midst of a 2,552-mile swim along the length of the Mississippi to support Gold Star Families.
For Chris Ring, the best part about swimming the entire length of the Mississippi River is meeting the families of fallen soldiers along the way.

When he reached LeClaire on Thursday after having swam about 700 miles of his 2,552-mile journey, he met his 77th family.

"They keep me going," he said. "I swim to celebrate their lives."

After 10 years in the U.S. Navy, Ring says he wasn't much of a swimmer before agreeing to tackle the Legacies Alive second annual effort to bring awareness to Gold Star Families. This year's effort, called "Swim for their Sacrifice," is being updated on Legacies Alive social media sites.

To prepare, Ring endured four months of rigorous training, including advanced swimming and breathing techniques. Just being in shape wasn't good enough. He said he needed to be in "swimming shape" in order to handle being able to swim 10 to 20 miles a day, six days a week for six months.
Killed in war on terror
The following 28 men and women from the Quad-Cities were killed in action during the war on terror.

Cpl. Bryant J. Luxmore, 25, of New Windsor, Ill., was killed June 10 two months after his deployment to Afghanistan. He was assigned to the Army’s 1st Battalion, 64th Armor Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division.
Cpl. Zachary C. Reiff, 22, of Preston, Iowa, died from wounds suffered Nov. 18 in Sangin District, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 7th Marines, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force and was twice injured during deployments.
Pfc. Adam E. Dobereiner, 21, of Moline died Nov. 18, when injured by an improvised explosive device at Kandahar province, Afghanistan. He was assigned to 8th Engineer Battalion, 36th Engineer Brigade.
Army Lt. Col. Robert Baldwin, 39, of Eliza, Ill., served in the Army’s 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell, Ky. He died in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan, Sept. 30.
Illinois National Guard Spc. Christopher Talbert, 24, of Galesburg was a medic with the Illinois National Guard 130th Infantry Battalian, died July 7 in a terrorist bombing attack near Shindad, Afghanistan.
Sgt. Justin J. Duffy, 31, a native of Moline, died in Baghdad on June 2 after the vehicle he was driving hit an improvised explosive device.
Cpl. Jason Pautsch, 20, of Davenport was killed April 10 in a suicide bomb attack in Mosul, Iraq. Pautsch was a squadron leader in the Army's 4th Infantry Division.
Sgt. Schuyler B. Patch, 25, of Galva, Ill., died Feb. 24 with three other soldiers in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle.
Staff Sgt. Nathan M. Cox, 32, of Davenport died Sept. 20 in the Korengal Valley, Afghanistan, along with another soldier, after suffering injuries when their vehicle struck an improvised explosive device.
Capt. Joshua E. Steele, 26, of North Henderson, Ill., died June 17 in Panjway, Afghanistan, along with two other soldiers, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle.
Pfc. Michael P. Pittman, 34, of Davenport died June 15 in Baghdad of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device and small arms fire.
Pfc. Robert A. Liggett, 23, a Rock Island High School graduate of Urbana, Ill., died May 29 in Rustamiyah, Iraq, from injuries suffered in a noncombat-related incident.
Spc. David W. Behrle, 20, of Tipton, Iowa, died May 19 in Baghdad, along with five other members of his unit, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their vehicle.
Pfc. Katie M. Soenksen, 19, of Davenport died May 2 in Baghdad of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated near her vehicle.
Sgt. Michael D. Smith, 41, of Bettendorf died Dec. 18, in Washington, D.C., of injuries he received while serving in Iraq.
Petty Officer 1st Class Jerry A. Tharp, 44, of Aledo, Ill., died July 12 when his dismounted patrol was struck by an explosive device in the Al Anbar province of Iraq.
Petty Officer 1st Class Gary Rovinski, 44, of Roseville, Ill., was killed June 5 when the Humvee he was traveling in was hit by an improvised explosive device in the Al Anbar province.
Army Sgt. Donald Griffith Jr., 29, of Mechanicsville, Iowa, died March 11 in Telefar, Iraq. He served in the 2nd Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, based at Fort Lewis, Wash.
Sgt. Jessica M. Housby of Rock Island was killed Feb. 9. She served with the 1644th Transportation Unit, Illinois National Guard, Rock Falls, Ill.
Pfc. Scott M. Tyrrell, 21, of Sterling, Ill., died Nov. 20 of injuries suffered Nov. 14 near Tikrit. He served with the 299th Engineer Battalion, 4th Infantry Division, out of Fort Hood, Texas.
Pfc. Nick Skinner of Davenport was killed Aug. 26. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 4th Marine Unit, Platoon 1023, out of Camp Pendleton, Calif.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Trace W. Dossett of Orlando, Fla., a Wapello, Iowa, native, was killed May 2. He was assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 14 out of Jacksonville, Fla.
Sgt. Landis W. Garrison of Rapids City, Ill., died April 29. He was assigned to the 333rd Military Police Co., Freeport, Ill.
Cpl. Michael R. Speer, a Kansas native who joined the Marine Corps in Davenport, was killed April 9. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marines, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.
Sgt. Aaron Sissel of Tipton, Iowa, was killed Nov. 29 in Iraq. He was assigned to the 2133rd Transportation Company of the Iowa National Guard, based in Centerville, Muscatine and Cedar Rapids.
Sgt. Paul F. Fisher, 39, of Marion, Iowa, died Nov. 6 from injuries suffered in a rocket attack on his helicopter Nov. 2 near Fallujah. Fisher served with Army National Guard Detachment 1, Company F, 106th Aviation Battalion, based in Davenport.
Chief Warrant Officer Bruce A. Smith of West Liberty, Iowa, was killed Nov. 2. He also was assigned to Detachment 1, Company F, 106th Aviation Battalion.
Sgt. Bradley S. Korthaus of Davenport drowned March 24. He was assigned to the Marines 6th Engineer Support Battalion.
For more information about Legacies Alive and to keep up on Chris Ring's progress, go to
read more here

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Camp Shelby Soldiers Shot At Again

Gunfire reported near Camp Shelby for second straight day
By Jason Hanna and Shawn Nottingham
August 5, 2015

(CNN)For the second straight day, an unidentified man has fired gunshots near the Camp Shelby military post in southern Mississippi, the National Guard said Wednesday.

The latest gunfire happened about 8 a.m. (9 a.m. ET) Wednesday in the same area where gunshots were reported on Tuesday, near a military checkpoint east of the base, Mississippi National Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Christian Patterson said.

Shots fired near Camp Shelby in Mississippi

County authorities and the military are looking for whoever fired the shots, described in both cases as a white male in a red pickup truck, Patterson said.

Information on whether anyone was targeted in either case wasn't immediately available, though authorities noted that soldiers were at the checkpoint on the county road during Tuesday's incident.
read more here