Marine Staff Sgt. Jorge Molina Bautista

Died May 23, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

37 year old Jorge Molina Bautista, of Rialto, Calif.; assigned to 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, 1st Marine Division, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.; killed by hostile action May 23 in Anbar province, Iraq.


Jorge A. Molinabautista wanted to become a Marine since his childhood. “He believed in what he was doing,” said his sister, Connie Molina. “He was so proud. He’s a hero.” Staff Sgt. Molinabautista, 37, of Rialto, Calif., spent 13 years in the Marine Corps and had trained as a drill sergeant at Camp Pendleton, Calif., where he was based.

He was killed May 23 by hostile fire in Iraq’s Anbar province. He had asked the Marines to change his last name from Molina to Molinabautista to honor his mother, Maria Bautista, and the military accommodated his request.

Molinabautista is survived by his wife, Dina, and three sons.

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Army Master Sgt. Brian Naseman

Died May 22, 2009 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

36 year old Brian Naseman, of New Bremen, Ohio; assigned to the 108th Forward Support Company, attached to 2nd Battalion, 127th Infantry, 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Sussex, Wis.; died May 22 in Taji, Iraq of a noncombat-related incident.


Wife remembers fallen husband

The Associated Press

CALEDONIA, Wis. — A Racine soldier who was killed in Iraq last week was always a comic, the life of the party whose two young sons adored and idolized him, his wife said.

Sgt. 1st Class Brian K. Naseman died May 22 of injuries described as noncombat-related, according to the Department of Defense.

Peggy Naseman said their boys, ages 9 and 7, wanted to be just like their father.

“They wanted to be career military just like their dad,” Naseman said Monday. “They knew that what he was doing was a good cause.”

Now they don’t understand why he won’t be coming home, she said.

Brian Naseman, 36, was assigned to the 108th Forward Support Company, attached to 2nd Battalion, 127th Infantry, 32nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team out of Sussex.

He died in a rural region 20 miles north of Baghdad, where he was stationed with the Wisconsin Army National Guard. Military officials are still investigating the circumstances surrounding his death.

He was born to serve, Peggy Naseman said, always ready to give. He would help a friend or neighbor at any time, day or night.

“I can’t even tell you how many lives Brian has changed,” she said. “If you needed something, he was there.”

Friends and neighbors spent Memorial Day with Peggy Naseman, helping around the house and tying yellow ribbons around the trees in their yard.

Brian Naseman grew up in Ohio and met his future wife at a barn dance, where he taught her to line dance. Sparks didn’t immediately fly, but Peggy Naseman soon realized how funny he was.

When he moved from Ohio to Wisconsin, he transferred from the Ohio National Guard to the Wisconsin National Guard, with which he served one tour of duty in Kuwait before his stint in Iraq.

Peggy Naseman said she still doesn’t know when she can plan a funeral for her husband of 10 years. She was told his body might be returned to the U.S. as soon as this week.

The last time the Naseman family was together was in April when Peggy Naseman and the boys traveled to New Mexico to see Brian Naseman before he shipped off to Iraq.

They spent one of their final days together on a hot-air balloon.

“We got as close to heaven as we wanted to be at the time,” Peggy Naseman said.


Nasemen never turned his back on others

The Associated Press

Brian Naseman never explained to his wife exactly why he wanted to join the military. He just did. He was a born leader, Peggy Naseman said.

When he moved from Ohio to Wisconsin, he transferred from the Ohio National Guard to the Wisconsin National Guard, with which he served two tours of duty, once in Kuwait and most recently in Iraq.

Brian would help a friend or neighbor at any time, day or night.

“I can’t even tell you how many lives Brian has changed. If you needed something, he was there,” she said.

Naseman, 36, of Racine, Wis., died May 22 in a noncombat-related incident in a rural region about 20 miles north of Baghdad.

He also is survived by two sons, Cole, 9, and Carter, 7. Naseman grew up in Ohio and met his future wife at a barn dance, where he taught her to line dance.

The Naseman family was last together in April when Peggy and the boys traveled to Albuquerque, N.M., to say goodbye to Brian before he shipped off to Iraq.

They spent one of their final days together on a hot air balloon.

“We got as close to heaven as we wanted to be at the time,” Peggy Naseman said.

Army 1st Lt. Leevi K. Barnard

Died May 21, 2009 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

28 year old Leevi Barnard, of Mount Airy, N.C.; assigned to the 252nd Combined Arms Battalion, Fayetteville, N.C.; died May 21 near Baghdad of wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device. Also killed were Maj. Jason E. George and Sgt. Paul F. Brooks.


Interests spanned from philosophy to war

The Associated Press

Leevi K. Barnard’s family described him as a quiet man with a dry sense of humor, a very private but thoughtful person who liked to read Plato and “The Art of War.” He also enjoyed sports, particularly playing on the church softball team and fantasy football.

“To me, if there ever was a hero, he was a hero,” said Thomas Barnard, his grandfather.

Barnard, 28, of Mount Airy, N.C., died May 21 near Baghdad of wounds suffered when his unit was attacked. He was assigned to Fayetteville, N.C.

He graduated from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2007 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in Arabic studies.

“He knew how to make you laugh, and if he didn’t make you laugh, he knew how to make you smile,” said Dianne Orr, a friend.

He also is survived by his mother and stepfather, Pam B. and Larry Payne; his father, Geoffrey Gordon; and his stepmother, Gloria Gordon.

“It was a privilege to have Leevi as a friend,” said Sgt. 1st Class Michael Street. “All the things that made him a good officer made him an even better friend.”

Air Force 1st Lt. Roslyn L. Schulte

Died May 20, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

25 year old Roslyn Schulte, of St. Louis; assigned to the Headquarters, Pacific Air Forces Command, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; died May 20 near Kabul, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device.


Mo. town says farewell on Memorial Day

The Associated Press

CREVE COEUR, Mo. — On the day America honored its fallen war heroes, one of the latest of those heroes was remembered at a funeral service in suburban St. Louis.

Air Force 1st Lt. Roslyn Schulte, who was stationed at Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii, was buried May 25, five days after she was killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. She was 25.

“Memorial Day will never be the same,” Rabbi Mark Shook told the hundreds who filled Congregation Temple Israel. “No one in this place will ever take Memorial Day for granted again.”

Officials say Schulte was the Air Force Academy’s 10th graduate — and first female graduate — killed in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

Schulte grew up in Ladue. She captained a state championship lacrosse team at John Burroughs School in a wealthy area of St. Louis County. Friends described her as smart, compassionate and determined.

“It’s totally going to change our community,” said a friend, 27-year-old Elise Berger. “When someone that close to you dies, you have a new appreciation.”

Schulte dreamed of being a fighter pilot since age 12. At the academy, she was among the top in her class.

In her third year, she decided to pursue military intelligence instead of aviation, believing she could do more for her country in that role, said her brother, Todd, 28.

She was sent to Afghanistan in February. There, her parents said, she helped teach Afghan military officials how to gather and interpret intelligence. She was traveling in a convoy from Camp Eggers, Kabul, to Bagram Airfield when she was killed.

Schulte met her boyfriend, Air Force Capt. Bruce Cohen, at Hickam, where both were stationed. At the funeral, he tearfully revealed how he planned to propose when she returned to the United States in August.


Leadership was where Schulte excelled

The Associated Press

Robert Schulte remembers how his daughter, as a young girl, organized a group of her peers on the first day of summer camp to perform a play. In high school, Roslyn L. Schulte also captained the lacrosse team and became an all-American lacrosse player.

“She wanted to be in charge. And she was,” he said.

Schulte, 25, of St. Louis died May 20 near Kabul of wounds suffered from an explosive. She was assigned to Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii.

Friends remembered how some had questioned her about the idea of working in a group made up mostly of men. “Do you think they are going to bully me?” she would defiantly respond.

At the Air Force Academy, Roslyn Schulte majored in political science, interned for former Sen. Alan Allard, R-Colo., became a group commander — one of the academy’s highest positions — and captained the lacrosse team, said her mother, Suzie.

Schulte graduated in 2006 and went into military intelligence instead of aviation. She went to Afghanistan in February.

“She knew how to talk to chiefs of staff, to generals, to privates, and they listened,” Robert Schulte said. “And that’s what we needed, a great leader of people.”

Army Spc. Michael C. Campbell

Died May 19, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

34 year old Michael Campbell, of Marshfield, Mo.; assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Schweinfurt, Germany; killed May 19 when his convoy hit an improvised explosive device in Samarra, Iraq.


In the months after the 2001 terror attacks, Michael C. Campbell drove trucks hauling debris from what used to be the World Trade Center. “That really played hard on him,” said Donna Gann, who with her husband took in Campbell during his high school years in the mid-1980s. The lack of blood relation to the Ganns didn’t matter, said their daughter, Sherry Wilson, “He was our brother and my mom’s son,” she said.

A Navy and National Guard veteran from Marshfield, Mo., Spc. Campbell, 34, deployed to Iraq with the Army. He was killed May 19 by a roadside bomb in Samarra. The decision to serve in Iraq wasn’t easy for Campbell, Wilson said. “He made sure it was OK with the family and that everybody was all right with it,” she said. “We didn’t like it, but we supported him 100 percent.”

Campbell last spoke to his family after Mother’s Day and thanked Gann for sending packages with candies and cookies, which he shared with fellow soldiers and Iraqi children.

Marine Pfc. Michael M. Carey

Died May 18, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

20 year old Michael Carey, of Prince George, Va.; assigned to 1st Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, at Camp Pendleton, Calif.; died May 18 after he apparently fell into a canal in Iraq and did not resurface. His body was recovered the same day.


Serendipity brought Michael Carey to a Marine Corps recruiting office when he was 17. The Army recruiter wasn’t there when Carey and his grandfather stopped by, so they checked next door with the Marine recruiting office.

A Marine combat engineer from Hopewell, Va., Carey, 20, drowned May 18 in the Euphrates River while trying to defuse a bomb under a bridge.

“He was a brave man,” his brother, Kristopher, said. “I love you, Mikey. Thank you for making me what I am.”

Carey also is survived by his wife. He never met his daughter, Mia, who was born May 5.

Marine Lance Cpl. Bob W. Roberts

Died May 17, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

30 year old Bob Roberts, of Newport, Ore.; assigned to 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif.; killed May 17 by hostile fire near Fallujah, Iraq.


Oregon Marine killed in Iraq

Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. — A Marine from Oregon was killed by hostile fire in Iraq, the Defense Department said Tuesday.

Lance Cpl. Bob W. Roberts, 30, of Newport, died Monday in Al Anbar province.

He was assigned to the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, out of Camp Pendleton, Calif.

Roberts is the 19th service member with strong Oregon ties killed in the Iraq war.

Roberts’ mother, who would not give her first name, told KATU-TV that her son graduated from Portland’s Madison High School in 1992.

She said her son, the second youngest of five children, called late last week. She said that even though he had two years left in the Marines, he told her that he may re-enlist.

“He was the adventurous one of the family,” she said.

Roberts worked as a plumber in Newport before joining the Marines after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

“It’s sad what happened,” Newport Mayor Mark Jones said Tuesday night. “The community is pretty tight, and we’re really saddened by the loss of any of our sons and daughters.”

Roberts was among more than 125 people from the Newport area serving in Iraq, Jones said.

Just on Monday, the city council accepted a flag flown in an Air Force jet over Iraq as a gift from the father-in-law of a pilot serving in the region, Jones said.

“We have a lot of kids in and out of there and we worry,” Jones said.

A memorial service has not been scheduled, but the family said Roberts will be buried at Willamette National Cemetery.