FRUITPORT, MI, USA U.S. Army SPC, COMPANY B, 1ST BATTALION, 38TH INFANTRY, 4 BCT, FORT LEWIS, WA BALAD, IRAQ 11/18/2007
Jason T. Lee entered the military in May 2004, intending to join an airborne unit. He transferred to the infantry after he was injured, his father said.
I said, ‘I don’t have a problem with you joining the military, Thomas Lee said. But why the airborne, the infantry? He said: ‘I am big. I am strong. It’s my calling, Dad. If it’s not me, who else is it going to be?’
Lee, 26, of Fruitport, Mich., was killed Nov. 18 by an explosive in Baqubah. He earned his GED in 2005 and was assigned to Fort Lewis.
He was a good guy. One of a kind. The best there is, said his brother Ryan.
Lee was known to march to his own drummer. He was very much a free spirit, said Kerri Jacobs, who taught him Spanish. He was always carrying a guitar. The kids really liked him – he got along with everyone. Kim Smith remembered that Lee took a class in social responsibility from her in the spring of 1998. He was a very, very bright young man, Smith said. He was not afraid to speak his mind, but he was very kind.
Residents — including hundreds of students — lined the route of a procession Wednesday that carried the casket of U.S. Army Corporal Jason Lee from Sytsema Funeral Homes’ Lee Chapel to the funeral service at Calvary Church in Fruitport Township.
The procession traveled down Harvey Street to Pontaluna Road, where turned onto Airline Road to pass Fruitport High School, where Lee attended in 1997-99. Share Students were released from class so they could line the procession route.
Lee was stationed at Fort Lewis, Wash., where he was a member of the 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division.
Survivors include his parents Thomas and Susan Lee of Fruitport, wife Lisa, and brothers Sean Robert Lee and Robert Edward Lee of Fruitport.
Law enforcement from Fruitport Township, Michigan State Police, the Muskegon County Sheriff’s Department, Norton Shores, and Grand Haven assisted with Wednesday’s procession. The Fruitport and Norton Shores fire departments provided a draped flag at the entrance of Calvary Church.
Members of the Patriot Guard Riders attended to assist as were representatives of many area Veterans of Foreign Wars posts.