DURHAM, NH, USA U.S. Navy CPO, NAVAL SPECIAL WARFARE DEVELOPMENT GROUP BALAD, IRAQ 02/04/2008
Hardy was born in Falmouth Hospital on Cape Cod on December 28, 1978. He grew up in Kirkland, Washington and Moon Township, Pennsylvania before moving to Durham, New Hampshire in 1988. He dreamed of becoming a Navy SEAL at a young age. His grandfathers, Charles “Bucky” Harris served on the PT 109 with John F. Kennedy, and Dr. Irad B. Hardy served as a combat surgeon with the Fourth Marine Division on Tarawa, Saipan, and Iwo Jima. Growing up hearing tales of the famous torpedo boat, cut in half by a Japanese destroyer, he had wanted to join the Navy ever since the sixth grade.
He enlisted in 1997 after graduating from high school in Durham, N.C Through his years on the soccer and lacrosse fields at Oyster River High School he discovered and developed the fierce competitiveness and team-first mentality that would later serve him so well on his road to achieving that goal.
In 2005, while attending the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, Hardy married the love of his life, Mindi Buck from Salt Lake City, Utah. In 2007, Mindi gave birth to their son, Parker Hall. He lived his dream both at work, where he served the cause of freedom against terror and fear, and at home, where he was a devoted husband and father.
Nathan was killed while trying to drag his friend and fellow SEAL, Chief Petty Officer Mike Koch of State College, Pa., to safety. Both men died. Stephen Hardy, Nathan’s father, said his son and Koch had been part of the same unit for about a year. “They were just two similar guys and they loved each other; they worked out together and trained together.” The two are buried side by side at Arlington National Cemetery.