HAW RIVER, NC, US
CPL, COMPANY C, 2D BATTALION, 503D INFANTRY, CAMP EDERLE, ITALY
07/13/2008, COP KAHLER, AFGHANISTAN
The loss of this soldier has touched home in Valdosta, Georgia with Corporal Rainey leaving behind family members, including his mother and father, Frankie Gay, three brothers and one sister. Rainey had been a soldier in the United States Army for three years, but according to his proud family and fellow soldiers, his heart and dedication was that of a soldier on and off the battle field.
“I’m not sure what words can describe him,” said Gay. At 6 feet, 4 inches and 250 pounds, his father describes his son as a big teddy bear. “
According to his room mate, Josh, who is still in Afghanistan and has been corresponding with Rainey’s family, Pruitt saved the lives of two other soldiers before he lost his own life and stated that the soldiers fought with everything that they had in them.
“Josh said that they were all heroes, and that Pruitt was close to the other eight soldiers that lost their lives on July 13th,” said Traci Taylor, Rainey’s aunt. “His room mate stated that Pruitt was a leader in his squadron and the other soldiers had great respect for him. He was very much loved and had no enemies.”
Gay said that Pruitt was attending North Carolina State University on a wrestling scholarship and had enlisted in the Army in 2004. “Pruitt was expected be released on July 18th. “I was supposed to meet him at his base in Venice, Italy. We were going to travel abroad for two weeks and come back to Valdosta. He was going to finish his last year in the Army in North Carolina at Fort Bragg.”
According to Gay, Pruitt intended to go to the University of Florida to become a wrestling coach and a teacher. “He was a man of God, he was my son, I love and I miss him.” Gay added, “for those who man the battle line, the bugle whispers low, and freedom has a taste and price the protected never know. Pruitt will not be forgotten!”
Corporal Rainey, was raised by his maternal grandmother and mother.