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Barry W Mayo


U.S. Army


BAQUBAH, IRAQ 03/05/2007

Barry W. Mayo’s family set up TV screens at a funeral home to play clips from different moments in his life. The pictures showed him hanging out with friends and playing pool with this brother. The one constant was Mayo smiling.

Barry was quite the joker, said longtime friend Rickey Binet as he looked at old pictures of Mayo on a television screen. He just always wore that huge smile on his face. You couldn’t stay mad at the guy.

Mayo, 21, of Ecru, Miss., was killed March 5 by a roadside bomb in Baqubah. He was assigned to Fort Hood and had completed one semester at Northeast Mississippi Community College before entering the Army.

He was always joking and cutting up, said his stepmother, Becky Mayo. When I would question him about where he was and what he was doing over there, he would say, ‘Becky, you don’t have to be worried about me.’

She said she did her best to talk him out of going into the Army. He was determined to go. He wouldn’t have it any other way. He wanted it. His daddy said he was old enough to make his own decision.

Mayo was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 82nd Field Artillery, 3rd Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. Ryan D. Russell, 20, of Elm City, N.C., and Blake Harris, 22, of Pueblo, Colo., died with Mayo.

Mayo attended North Pontotoc High School and had one semester at Northeast Mississippi Community College before entering the Army.

“He first went over to Iraq when he just turned 18,” Mayo’s grandmother Patricia said. “He had come back home and had been back for two weeks before he went back on Feb. 20, his 21st birthday.”

Becky Mayo said her stepson had thought he would be coming home after three years of service before his unit was told last August that they would be going to Iraq. She said during his return home last month, Mayo had expressed hope he would be out this August.

He also is survived by his father, John; and mother and stepfather, Robert and Kim.


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