MAPLE GROVE, MN, USA U.S. Army SGT, COMPANY A, 2D BATTALION, 135TH INFANTRY, WEST SAINT PAUL, MN AN NASIRIYIA, IRAQ 12/04/2006
SGT Nicholas Turcotte, 23, was killed on Dec. 4, 2006, while on convoy near Nasiriyah, Iraq. He was serving a tour of duty with the Red Bull Division. During his time with the Red Bulls Nick became known as a soldier’s soldier, advancing quickly and becoming an example of what it takes to be a great soldier to all those around him. Turcotte, a native of Maple Grove, Minn., died due to injuries suffered in a vehicle accident. He had been assigned to Company A, 2nd Battalion, 135th Infantry, where he conducted radio relay point and convoy escort team operations for the unit.
At a memorial service in December, 2006, Spc. Tyler Pinska, Turcotte’s roommate, was the first of three Soldiers who delivered tributes to their fallen comrade. Pinska spoke in high praise of his friend’s dedication to his job and his many achievements since arriving here. “Sgt. Turcotte was one of the most knowledgeable Soldiers I have ever met,” said Pinska. “When it came mission time, nothing could stop him.”
Capt. Anton J. Dittrich, Turcotte’s company commander, also spoke during the service, saying Turcotte was “a wonderful man, a dedicated Soldier and a loyal friend. During the course of our [unit’s] time together, Sgt. Turcotte never faltered in his desire to improve himself, his team and his squad. He pushed himself beyond expectations in both mind and body. His presence made an indelible mark upon our company. We certainly mourn his loss but will celebrate his contributions and spirit far longer.”
In high school, Turcotte participated in football and hockey. He also was active in the school’s jazz band, the orchestra and choir. He played the trombone and attended North Hennepin Community College.
Turcotte was part of the Maple Grove Police Department’s Explorer Program in 2002. During the Minnesota Law Enforcement Explorer Conference Competition in April of 2002, he placed third in the Air Pistol competition. A memorial scholarship has been established in his name for high school students involved in the Minnesota Law Enforcement Explorers.
He is survived by his wife Jennifer Ann, his mother Deborah K. Moore and his father Mark Peterson.