WESTCHESTER, NY, USA
PFC, BATTERY C, 1ST BATTALION, 14TH FIELD ARTILLERY, FORT SILL, OKLAHOMA
MOSUL, IRAQ 01/20/2010
A soldier from Yonkers who planned on a career in the military died Wednesday in Iraq after he was thrown from an out-of-control Humvee, authorities and family said.
Private First Class Gifford Hurt, 19, was killed in the early-morning wreck when the vehicle flipped off a road and threw him from a passenger seat, his mother, Lisa Davis, told the Daily News Saturday night.
Hurt had planned his life around serving the country.
“He was going to do the max they would let him do,” Davis said. “He would’ve been 65 years old, walking with a cane before they would have to get rid of him.”
Davis, 42, served in the Army for 22 years before retiring in November 2007, she said. Hurt was the second oldest of her five children, all raised in Army bases around the world.
“He was an Army brat,” she said. “All of our friends are in the military and that’s all he knew.”
While he was in Iraq, the two stayed in contact every day on the Internet.
“I would stay up every night until he Skyped with me,” she said, adding that their conversations didn’t usually start until after 1 a.m.
Talking to him before bed made it easier for her to fall asleep. “At least I knew he was back inside,” she said.
A ceremony for Hurt will be held on Tuesday when his body is flown into North Carolina’s Pope Air Force base. He will be buried with full military honors, his family said.
“He was a joy,” said Davis. “He had many friends. He was well loved.”