SWARTZ CREEK, MI, USA U.S. Army SPC, BATTERY A, 2D BATTALION,17TH FIELD ARTILLERY, (2 MEF) FORT CARSON, CO RAMADI, IRAQ 04/16/2005
On his last visit home, Randy Stevens rode go-carts at Busch Gardens and loaded up on T-shirts and Kool Aid, which he said was “like gold” in Iraq.
“In so many ways he was a man, but he was also still a kid who liked to do kid things, like going to amusement parks,” said his brother, Jacob Maxwell. He described his brother as “your average 21-year-old who liked nice clothes and going to clubs.”
Stevens, of Swartz Creek, Michigan, was born on August 7, 1983. He was killed on April 16, 2005 at the age of 21 after being hit by indirect fire from mortars and rockets in Ramadi, Iraq. He was so close to leaving Iraq that he had sent his things back to Fort Carson. Specialist Stevens was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery in Camp Hovey, Korea.
Specialist Stevens is remembered as a dedicated and selfless soldier who often volunteered for the difficult tasks. Few people know that he had willingly taken the shift of fellow soldier and friend on the day he died. Sergeant Tim Meegan, Jr. called Stevens “one of the most honest, straightforward, and hard working soldiers I knew. He would have done anything for anyone. Not too many know that his sacrifice came from helping a friend. I was proud to serve with him and will never forget him.”
At 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, Stevens went from playing football in high school to being the first sharpshooter in the door on many operations in Iraq.
Family members said the military helped Stevens get through tough times. He had dropped out of high school but earned his general equivalency diploma when he enlisted in 2002. He had just re-enlisted for another six years.
He saw considerable combat since arriving in Iraq in August of 2004 and had lost several friends, including some he had helped treat as a combat lifesaver. He earned a Purple Heart after his Humvee was struck by an explosive in November of 2004 and he shielded his companion despite being wounded in the head.
Stevens planned to become an Army recruiter in Flint and someday open an auto body repair shop with his brother. He had a passion for Harley-Davidson motorcycles and Ford Mustangs.
He is survived by his mother, Sherri Stevens and father, David Maxwell. He is buried in Flint Memorial Park in Flint, Michigan.