MANSFIELD, OH, USA U.S. Marines MAJ, MWSS-371, MWSG-37, (MWSS-374, I MEF FWD), 3D MAW, MCAS YUMA, AZ AL TAQADDUM, IRAQ 06/03/2006
Michael D. Stover’s decision to enlist in the Marines did not come as a surprise to his sister, who watched her baby brother grow up craving adventure as much as he did book knowledge. His nickname was ‘Monkey’ as a kid because he was always falling out of trees, breaking his arm, riding bicycles and flying over the handlebars and ending up in hospitals, said Cheryl Meister. Anything that was exciting or extreme, Michael had to be involved in.
Major Stover, 43, of Mansfield, Ohio, died June 3, 2006 from a non-hostile incident in Al Anbar province, Iraq. He was the executive officer assigned to Marine Wing Support Squadron-371, Marine Wing Support Group-37, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Air Station, Yuma, Arizona.
Stover, recently selected for promotion to lieutenant colonel, was in the middle of his second tour in the war-torn Middle East country within an 18 month period
Stover graduated from Malabar High School in Mansfield in 1980 and reported to the Marines in 1981. He was released from active duty in 1986 to attend Ohio State University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism in December 1990 and was commissioned a Marine Corps second lieutenant.
Michael was an outdoorsman – a Boy Scout who wrestled, lifted weights, and rode his bicycle long distances. He was into a lot of physical activities that challenged him as an individual, said his brother, Edward Al Stover.
Lt. Chris Kaprielian arrived at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma in Arizona in 2004, about two weeks before Maj. Michael D. Stover checked in for duty. It didn’t take long for the young Marine officer to realize he was in the presence of an outstanding leader.
“Major Stover was like a father to our operations section. The amount of knowledge he brought in from his prior experiences in the Marine Corps was incredible. Like a father, he looked out for the men in his command. And like a father, he was very demanding,” said Kaprielian
“Work was his life. We worked really long hours here. I don’t know a man who worked as hard as he did. He would just press and press and press. Major Stover had a big following here. Anyone who knew him even briefly knew he was a good Marine. If he was here today and asked us to go with him anywhere in the world, we’d all go,” Kaprielian said.
Major David Stover was the son of LaVern “Smokey” and Doris Stover. He is buried in Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery.