MIDLOTHIAN, IL, USA U.S. Army SGT, COMPANY D, 1ST BATTALION, 178TH INFANTRY, WOODSTOCK, IL JALALABAD FST, AFGHANISTAN 03/15/2009
Christopher Paul Abeyta was born April 10, 1985 in Midlothian, Illinois. He graduated from Bremen High School in 2003 where he excelled in track, football and wrestling. Christopher had many sides to his personality – he liked to read, listen to music and had a goofy sense of humor. He enlisted in the Illinois Army National Guard in May 2002 because of the terrorist attacks on September, 11 2001.
After his first tour of duty in Iraq at the age of 18, he graduated from Harold Washington College in Chicago in 2007 with an associates degree, but Christopher wanted to stay in the military and become a paramedic. He loved helping people and felt what he was doing was important.
He was on his second deployment in Afghanistan when he was killed on March 15, 2009 at the age of 23. Sgt. Abeyta was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 178th Infantry Regiment, 33rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Woodstock, Illinois. He had been providing security for the coalition sent to rebuild the war-ravaged nation’s infrastructure – its damaged roads, hospitals and schools. He died in Jalabad, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained in Kot, Afghanistan, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle.
His bedroom in his parents’ house remains untouched since he left for Afghanistan. A military duffel bag sits on the bed, White Sox hats adorn a wall, alongside framed tickets for the band “Offspring” and a print of Monet’s painting “Starry Night.”
Before leaving for his last assignment, he had rushed home for something he left behind – no one was home. He left flowers for his mother and a message on a paper towel saying, “I love you guys more than you’ll ever know. Your son, Chris.” His parents still have the note taped to the refrigerator, surrounded by pictures of their only child.