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Thomas B Turner Jr


U.S. Army


LANDSTUHL 07/14/2006

“The best way to describe Tom Turner would be a grizzly bear with a teddy bear’s heart,” said SSG. Matthew Loringer, of his fallen comrade and friend. Loringer continued by describing Turner’s likeable qualities. “The one that really shines was his humbleness. You could tell he was no stranger to hard work by his rugged, tough appearance.”

Turner had co-owned a logging company in Northern California, which he left to join the Army. If ever asked why he gave up a successful business to join the Army he always replied with “I want to serve my country,”

While packing Turner’s belongings Staff Sergeant Dustin Swanson, Turner’s platoon sergeant, noticed a notebook and saw a passage that was earmarked. “Turner was quite the deep thinker. He would always try to write down powerful statements from brave and amazing people as well as passages from books and poems.”

Turner’s best friend Sergeant Gary Mette, who was in the same unit, exemplified this sentiment. “These past couple of days has been the saddest of my life. I loved you like a brother and will always consider you as one,” he said. “Thank you for touching my life in so many ways. There will always be an empty place in my heart for you that no one will be able to fill.”

Sergeant Turner embodied what we in 1st Sqdn., 32nd CAV refer to as being ‘switched on’,” said LT. COL. Arthur Kandarian, commander. “He understood why we are here, he understood why our Army fights the current evil, and he understood the mission. I know he knew what was at stake for Iraq, for our nation and for his and our families back home.”

Staff Sergeant Swanson, inspired by Turner’s practice of recording special statements read the following passage from Shakespeare’s HENRY V during the ceremony knowing it would have meant a lot to Turner:

“From this day to the ending of the world, but we in it shall be remembered; we few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother.”


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