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James L Smith

New Philadelphia, Ohio, USA

U.S. Army

Sergeant, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division

04/18/2011, Fort Campbell, KY

James was born on May 14, 1981 at Twin City Hospital in Dennison, Ohio. As a child, James was a member of the Tuscarawas County Little League Team that led an undefeated season of 21-0. James was also a member of 4-H and Boy Scouts. His passion for sports lasted through his time at Indian Valley High School as he became a member of the wrestling team. During his senior year, James qualified for the State Tournament.

His passion for the military always showed especially when, in his Junior year of high school, he enlisted in the Ohio Army National Guard under the Split Option Program. He attended Basic Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky between his Junior and Senior year and graduated in 2000. After high school graduation, James completed his Advanced Individual Training at Fort Lee, Virginia. In 2005, he transferred from the National Guard to active duty Army.

James was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas with the 62nd Quartermaster Company. On December 24, 2007 he was deployed to Camp Stryker, Iraq. He returned to Fort Hood, Texas on March 8, 2009. Just over a year later, James went on another tour of duty at Camp Humphries, South Korea with the 348th Quartermaster Company. He returned to be stationed at Fort Campbell, Kentucky with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division.

On June 27, 2009 James married Rachel Reidenbach. While he was stationed at Fort Hood, James joined the color guard. He had the honor of presenting the colors at the 2010 NBA All Star Game in Dallas, Texas. James also achieved Level II Combative training on the Combative Team. He continued to be an avid sports fan; he played a variety of sports and cheered on Ohio Sports Teams. He had a particular interest in line dancing and could be seen grooving on many regional TV programs and received many awards. James is remembered for his unparalleled military passion, especially through trying times at Fort Hood.

James is survived by his parents, James and Carol Smith, as well as his wife Rachel. James and Rachel had two children, Hannah and Peyton. James’ spirit, personality and passion had an impact on all who knew him.


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