Specialist Jeffrey Argrave of Baton Rouge, La served in the US Army and completed a tour of duty to Iraq in 2008. In 2010, Specialist Argrave was deployed to Kandahar, Afghanistan at Forward Operating Base Wilson. On May 30, 2010 his team was relieving guard when they were attacked by a Rocket Propelled Grenade.
At age 17 Joseph Bovia started his senior year at Bonnabel High School in Kenner, Louisiana. He was again enrolled in Junior Air Force ROTC and told his parents he planned on joining the Marine Corps upon graduation from High School. That is exactly what he did. After completing boot camp at Paris Island, South Carolina he received extra training and was deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Sergeant Patrick Oliver Williamson answered his life’s calling when he joined the US Army in August of 2006 after completing 2 years of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Louisiana in Lafayette. Although his choices were unlimited, he chose the infantry as a career path as he wanted to be one of the guys with boots on the ground on the front lines.
U. S. Army Specialist 4, Matthew Christopher Powell of Slidell, LA was deployed to Afghanistan in May 2010 from Fort Campbell KY. Matthew was home on leave in September 2010. He had such a great time. He was struggling with things going on over there but he stood proud as an American soldier. As his leave drew to a close, we drove to the airport on September 21 trying not to cry. Matthew would not let me stay with him at the airport. He told me he had to get his head together to head back to Afghanistan. I left and watched as he walked to the gate.
Our son, Matthew Wildes was a special young man and soldier. He wanted to serve his country in the Army at the earliest possibility and entered at age 16 into the delayed entry program. It was not possible for him to join until he turned 17 years old without our parental permission. Matt wanted to join so badly that we signed the necessary papers. Matt wanted to be an infantryman even though we tried to persuade him to choose a different MOS. He knew from the beginning that he wanted 11B. In April of 2008, he left Hammond for Ft. Benning, Georgia. In BCT Matt got stress fractures in his legs and was sent home for a month and then returned to Ft. Benning for rehabilitation. Since this occurred halfway through BCT, the entire month that he was home, Matt was anxious to return even though he was disappointed that he would not be graduating with original friends. After graduation on September 26, 2008, Matt came home for a week before leaving for his first duty station at Ft. Carson, Colorado.