Some gave all
We wish to express our deepest gratitude to the 3,500 men and women of the Army’s 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, which is currently in the process of redeploying to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson after a 10-month mission to Afghanistan. If it weren’t for these courageous “Spartans,” and the brave decision they made to serve in harm’s way, our nation would be a much more dangerous place.
During their time in eastern Afghanistan, the brigade was tasked with the challenging mission of training Afghan troops to defend their own country. It was a highly hazardous and important mission, and one of great peril. Many members of the brigade were injured in fighting during the mission, and eight of the Spartans paid the ultimate sacrifice.
As we honor and welcome home those who are returning safely, we would also like to recognize those members of the brigade who will not be returning to Alaska aboard the ongoing troop transfer flights.
Ranging in age from 21 to 30, these eight soldiers paid the ultimate price for their country when they fell in battle. Their names, along with their hometowns and the day they died are as follows:
Spc. Jeffrey Lee White Jr., 21, Catawissa, Mo., April 3, 2012
Staff Sgt. Thomas Kent Fogarty, 30, Alameda, Calif., May 6, 2012
Pfc. Richard L. McNulty, 22, Rolla, Mo., May 13, 2012
Sgt. Brian L. Walker, 25, Lucerne Valley, Calif., May 13, 2012
PFC Vincent J. Ellis, 22, Tokyo, Japan, June 4, 2012
PFC Nathan Tyler Davis, 20, Yucaipa, Calif., June 9, 2012
Staff Sgt. Carl Eric Hammar, 24, Lake Havasu City, Ariz., July 14, 2012
Spc. Ethan Jacob Martin, 22, Lewiston, Idaho, Aug. 7, 2012
To the brave Spartans who are now or will soon be returning safely, your safe return is a blessing to us all. Welcome home, Spartans.
To those who are no longer with us, we can offer no more than thanks for doing a job most of us would not dare to do.
You are true American heroes.