National Guard pays tribute on Memorial Day

(SC NATIONAL GUARD) COLUMBIA, S.C.-   In observance of Memorial Day, May 29, 2017, the South Carolina National Guard is pausing to remember those who paid the ultimate price in defense of freedom, along with the memory of 16 Soldiers from their ranks who lost their lives in the Global War on Terror. Since September 11, 2001, more than 19,000 South Carolina Army and Air National Guard men and women have answered America’s call and deployed overseas. This Memorial Day, there are more than 300 Soldiers from the S.C. National Guard deployed to various regions.

“Life and liberty are precious gifts. On Memorial Day, we remember those selfless patriots who did not return home to their loved ones while serving our nation,”  said U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Robert E. Livingston, Jr., The Adjutant General for South Carolina. “Freedom often comes at a cost. It is important to always remember the families these heroes leave behind.”

We will never forget:

Operation Iraqi Freedom
Pvt. Algernon Adams- 36, of Aiken, S.C.; assigned to the 122nd Engineer Battalion, S.C. Army National Guard, Edgefield, S.C.; died Oct. 28, 2003 of non-combat-related injuries at Forward Operating Base St. Mere, Falluja, Iraq.

Chief Warrant Officer 4 Patrick Leach- 39, of Rock Hill, S.C.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 151st Aviation Regiment, South Carolina Army National Guard, Columbia, S.C.; died Dec. 9, 2004 in an Apache helicopter accident in Mosul, Iraq. Leach died when his AH-64 collided with a UH-60 helicopter during a night mission.

Staff Sgt. Jerome Lemon- 42, of North Charleston, S.C.; assigned to the 1052nd Transportation Company, South Carolina Army National Guard, Kingstree, S.C.; killed  Oct. 27, 2004 when a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated near his military vehicle in Balad, Iraq.

1st Lt. Andrew Shields- 25, of Campobello, S.C.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 151st Aviation Regiment, South Carolina Army National Guard, Columbia, S.C.; died Dec. 9, 2004 in an Apache helicopter accident in Mosul, Iraq. Shields died when his AH-64 collided with a UH-60 helicopter during night mission.

Master Sgt. Thomas Thigpen, Sr.- 52, of Augusta, Georgia. Thigpen died in Camp Virginia, Kuwait (north of Kuwait City), of non-combat related injuries. He was assigned to the 151st Signal Battalion, Greenville, S.C. Thigpen died on March 16, 2004.

Operation Enduring Freedom- Afghanistan

Sgt.  Stephen High- 45, of Spartanburg, S.C.; assigned to the 228th Signal Brigade, South Carolina Army National Guard, Spartanburg, S.C.; killed April 6, 2005 when the CH-47 helicopter in which he was riding crashed in Ghazni, Afghanistan.

Spc. Chrystal Stout- 23, of Travelers Rest, S.C.; assigned to the 228th Signal Brigade, South Carolina Army National Guard, Spartanburg, S.C.; killed April 6, 2005 when the CH-47 helicopter in which she was riding crashed in Ghazni, Afghanistan.

Staff Sgt. James Bullard- 28, of Marion, S.C.; assigned to the South Carolina National Guard‘s 1st Battalion, 263rd Armor Regiment, in Marion, S.C.; died Oct. 30, 2007 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using rocket-propelled grenade fire, machine gun fire, mortars and small-arms fire during combat operations.

Sgt. Edward Philpot- 38, of Latta, SC; He was killed from a non-combat related Humvee rollover accident in Afghanistan Oct. 3, 2007.  Philpot was assigned to 1st Battalion, 263rd Armor Regiment, South Carolina National Guard, Dillon, SC.

Sgt.  Shawn Hill- 37, of Wellford, S.C.; assigned to the 178th Engineer Battalion, 218th Infantry Brigade, South Carolina Army National Guard, Rock Hill, S.C.; died Jan. 2, 2008 in Khost province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

Sgt. David Leimbach- 38, of Taylors, S.C.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 118th Infantry, Fountain Inn, S.C., and attached to the 2nd Squadron, 101st Cavalry (Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition), New York Army National Guard; died May 25, 2008 near Bala Baluk, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when his unit was attacked with small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades.

Staff Sgt. Willie Harley- 48, of Aiken, S.C.; assigned to the 1221st Engineer Clearance Company, Graniteville, S.C.; died Oct. 1, 2010 in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his military vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

Sgt. Luther Rabon- 32, of Lexington, S.C.; assigned to the 1221st Engineer Clearance Company, Graniteville, S.C.; died Oct. 1, 2010 in the Paktika province, Afghanistan.  Rabon was killed when the vehicle he was riding in struck an improvised explosive device.

Sgt. John “J.D.” David Meador II- 36, of Columbia, S.C.; assigned to 133rd Military Police Company, Florence, S.C.; died June 20, 2012 in Khost province, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by an improvised explosive device.

1st Lt. Ryan Davis Rawl- 30, of Lexington, S.C.; assigned to 133rd Military Police Company, 51st Military Police Battalion, Florence, S.C.; died June 20, 2012 in Khost, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by an improvised explosive device.

Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Bradford “Brad” Thomas- 30, of Travelers Rest, S.C.; assigned to 133rd Military Police Company, Florence, S.C.; died June 20, 2012 in Khost province, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by an improvised explosive device.

 

 

 

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