With thousands killed and many more injured, nothing brings a war home like the death of a soldier in the community. Here is a list of those fallen in the Mid-South.
Sgt. Morgan D. Kennon
Kennon, 23, died in Mosul when his position came under rocket-propelled grenade attack while guarding a bank in Mosul on Nov. 7, 2003.
Kennon’s unit was the 3rd battalion of the 101st Airborne Division’s 327th Infantry Regiment. He was a graduate of Central High School and was the first of the war’s casualties to come from Memphis. Kennon has been recommended for a Bronze Star.
`He was not afraid' - Beloved soldier felt a purpose
Marine Capt. Brent Morel
Morel, 27, a graduate of Bartlett High School and the University of Tennessee-Martin, was killed when his platoon was ambushed in Fallujah on April 7, 2004. His wife said, "He's always on my mind, so it's like every day is ... Memorial Day."
For Morel's bravery, his family will receive the Navy Cross in his honor. The Navy Cross is awarded to a person who exhibits extraordinary heroism in the presence of great danger or at great personal risk. It's second in distinction to the Medal of Honor.
Bartlett family to receive Navy Cross
Army Specialist Ervin Caradine Jr
Caradine, 33, was killed when an explosion turned over the Humvee he was driving on May 1, 2004. His aunt recalls, "He had a big personality and big voice."
A devoted family man, Caradine graduated from Fairley in 1990 and worked his way up to manage the Steak-Out on Park Avenue in East Memphis. He joined the Army in 1996.
Caradine remembered for big personality, big voice
Marine Lance Cpl. Tim Creager
Creager, 20, died in an explosion in Al Anbar Province on July 1, 2004. His minister said, "Tim was the kind of guy you want your daughter to marry and your sons to be like."
For Tim, serving was a life calling. Born on March 24, 1983, a modest 2 pounds, 13 ounces, Creager spent his first six weeks tangled in tubes, receiving blood transfusions. That little boy grew to be a solid 6-2. Grew to love baseball, tae kwon do, rapelling, scouts, lacrosse and bull riding.
Creager's devotion to Christ, country and duty was exemplary
Army National Guard First Lt. Matthew R. Stovall
Stovall, 25, was killed by IED on the road to Mosul when his vehicle hit a roadside bomb on Aug. 21, 2004. Mississippi Army National Guard readiness center has been named in his honor.
Friends described Matthew Stovall as a charismatic leader who always had a smile on his face. He attended Mississippi State University where he met his wife Natalie.
Stovall memory lends somber note to holiday
Army Specialist Marco D. Ross
Ross, 20, was killed in Baghdad when his camp was hit in a mortar attack on Aug. 25, 2004. After Sept. 11, the Fairley High School graduate enlisted. He was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division in Fort Hood, Texas.
Ross dreamed of going to college and opening a real estate office after leaving the Army. His mom said, "I look at the phone every day, waiting for him to call."
Memphis soldier killed in Iraq
Marine 1st Lt. Andrew Stern
Stern, 24, died on Sept. 16, 2004 when he put himself between the platoon he commanded and an improvised explosive device tucked in some garbage along a road in Fallujah. He loved his mom's cooking -- particularly her spaghetti.
Andrew Stern loved life at a fast pace and was looking forward to seeing it on the back of a new Harley-Davidson motorcycle when he returned from Iraq in a month, his family said. "He was rambunctious from the get-go," said Stern's father, Richard Stern. "But he became as good a son as there could be. He became my best friend."
Mother of fallen Marine copes with the haunting 'what ifs' and an empty chair at the family table
Lance Corporal Adam R. Murray
Murray, 21, died July 27, 2006 during fighting in Al Anbar province. Murray was a 2003 graduate of Cordova High School.
Murray told his family in case of his death, he wanted privacy from the media.
Marine from Cordova killed in Iraq
Marine Capt. Robert Secher
Secher, 33 died Oct. 8, 2006 when he was struck by a sniper's bullet in Anbar province. He was part of a 10-member team of Marines assigned to train an Iraqi army battalion.
Capt. Secher attended Christian Brothers High before graduating from Marion Military Institute in Marion, Ala. He had been in Iraq since January, but his career had taken him to posts around the world. He once was assigned to a detail at the White House during the terms of presidents George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton. His sister said, he saw the military "as a 'calling' much like some are called to the rabbinate or priesthood."
'Smiling soldier' Capt. Robert Secher of Germantown dies in Iraq
First Lt. Frank Walkup IV
Walkup IV, 23, of Woodbury, Tenn., died of
injuries he suffered during the attack at Rashaad, about 20 miles
southwest of Kirkuk on June 16, 2007. He was deployed to Iraq in August 2006 and had been there about 10
Lt. Walkup graduated from Riverdale High School in Murfreesboro and
then the University of Tennessee, where he met his wife Sabita. Walkup's mother, Melissa Oaks of Collierville, remembered a man with
a positive outlook who always planned a military career.
Walkup was 'proud to serve'
Army Pfc. Christopher Fox
Fox, 21, died in Adhamiyah, Iraq, of wounds suffered when he encountered small arms fire while on patrol on Sept. 29, 2008. He was on his second tour, due to be discharged from the Army in July.
Fox was in the service for three years, worked as a mortarman and earned awards including the Army Commendation medal, according to the Colorado Springs Gazette. He also won a Purple Heart after a device exploded on him a couple of months ago. Fox was remembered as a laid-back guy who always wanted to be a soldier and fight for his country.
Soldier from Memphis killed in Iraq