PENDLETON, OR, US
SSG, COMPANY D, 113TH AVIATION REGIMENT
09/25/2005, N DEH CHOPAN, AFGHANISTAN
An Oregon National Guard soldier who died in Afghanistan was remembered Thursday as a loving husband and father who decided to help to defend the country. Staff Sergeant Tane Baum, 30, died last month along with fellow Pendleton National Guard member Warrant Officer Adrian Stump, 22, when their Chinook helicopter went down. Baum and Stump were deployed to Kandahar in March with D Company, 113 Aviation.
Gov. Ted Kulongoski, a former Marine, told the more than 600 people who attended the service in Pendleton that he prays every morning that “no more of our sons and daughters will be taken.”
But he said the deaths of Baum and Stump show that the conflict in Afghanistan is not over.
“We’ve all lost an irreplaceable part of our lives and future,” Kulongoski said, adding that Baum willingly went into harm’s way “out of a profound sense of duty … to defend our country and its values.”
Baum and Stump were the first Oregon casualties since June and are the 51st and 52nd Oregon soldiers to die in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Major General Fred Rees of Helix, adjutant general of the Oregon National Guard, said he was proud of the steady growth of the Pendleton unit, beginning in the early 1980s with borrowed equipment.
The unit now is sought after to perform “global missions … Tane contributed to that.”
Baum joined the Army National Guard in December 1995 and was hired full time at the Army Aviation Support Facility in Pendleton in 1997, the same year he married Tina May Broncheau. They met when he was a senior at Weston-McEwen High School. Before joining the war in Afghanistan, Baum’s Chinook crew was involved in several firefighting missions and a dramatic rescue on Mt. Adams in 2004.
Rees posthumously awarded Baum the Bronze Star and Purple Heart, presenting them to his widow while his sons Dyllan and Caelan looked on.