BELGRADE, MT, USA
PO1, NMCB EIGHTEEN, TACOMA, WA
HADITHA, IRAQ 10/25/2006
Charles V. Komppa grew up mostly in Texas, but he craved winters in cold regions and all the outdoor fun they can offer.
One winter, while staying with his grandparents northwest of Minneapolis, Komppa quite literally left his mark. The throttle on his snowmobile froze and the machine slammed into the furnace room of his grandparents’ home, poking through the wall.
“It felt like the house was going to fall to pieces,” recalled his grandmother, Helen Bradshaw.
Komppa, 35, of Belgrade, Mont., was killed Oct. 25 when his vehicle hit a roadside bomb in Anbar province.
Komppa, an electrician at the Stillwater Mine in Stillwater County, enlisted in the Navy after graduating from high school in 1990. After that, Komppa set out to accomplish two long-standing goals: to become licensed as an electrician and to move his family to Montana.
“He loved the mountains and wanted to be here,” said his wife, Delisa. He also is survived by two children, 14-year-old Alicia and 11-year-old Gary.
Komppa enjoyed fly-fishing and spoke warmly of his daughter’s first hunting trip last year, during which she took her first deer.
Delisa Komppa described her husband as a “typical Montana boy” who loved hunting, fishing and camping.
“His priorities were God first, family then country,” Delisa Komppa said. “He was very proud to be in the service. He felt very strongly about the mission in Iraq and was happy to go.”
She said her husband told her that if anything happened to him overseas, “it was God’s will.”