URICH, MO, USA U.S. Army SSG, COMPANY A, 425TH BRIGADE SPECIAL TROOPS BATTALION, FORT RICHARDSON, AK BAGHDAD, IRAQ 05/21/2007
Shannon grew up in both Alabama and Georgia, where he lived with his grandparents Joan and David Weaver. Shiloh Baptist Church in Polk County, GA was a special place and had special meaning for him. He made friends there and was baptized there as a teen. He joined the Army right out of high school in 1998 and met his wife, Desiree, there. They had plans to move back to the area where he grew up and that she would start a pet boarding and grooming business while he became a park ranger. They also talked about building a home and starting a family there. Shannon Vautier Weaver gave his life in 2007 during Operation Iraqi Freedom. In memory of him, Desiree is still going to honor what he wanted to do. Shannon started every mission with a prayer. He was stationed at Fort Richardson, Alaska, had also been in the Army for about nine years and had just trained to be a paratrooper.
“I’m going on mission. Stay safe. I love you.” This was the last message his wife received from him, an assurance of his love and care for her. Fellow servicemen said he had a big body, big voice, and big heart. He was a Senior Noncommissioned Officer in his unit of 81 men and was the platoon go-to guy. He always put the squad before himself for example, by making sure that they had all been on leave before him and he even made special arrangements for one of them to be home during the birth of a child. Friends and comrades talked about him as a true warrior and a remarkable man who always thought of others first. Shannon’s commanding officer said he was physically, mentally and spiritually strong and started every mission with a prayer. He said the combat and maintenance engineer could fix anything, sometimes without anything to fix it with. Shannon could also draw on his previous experience in the field, as he led other soldiers. He served in three other tours of duty, one in the Dominican Republic, one in Kosovo in 2002 and a previous tour in Iraq.
His family members also describe him as kind-hearted, one who would do anything for people, very sweet, but tough too. Some of this hard-worker’s favorite activities were running and body-building. His courage is something all Americans can be proud of. Although Staff Sergeant Shannon V. Weaver is gone from us today, he is reunited with his father, Cecil Smith, and brother, Christopher, along with all the other fallen heroes who put freedom for everyone before themselves. We will never forget.