New Braunfels, TX, US
U.S. Marine Corps
SGT, 1ST BN, 7TH MAR (MEB-A FWD), 1ST MARDIV, TWENTYNINE PALMS, CA
06/25/2014, HELMAND PROVINCE, Afghanistan
SGT Thomas Zachary Spitzer was 23.
Thomas was born in 1991 in San Diego, CA. He became the newest member of a US Navy family. Thomas spent his early childhood playing on the sandy beaches of Andros Island, Bahamas with his younger brother, Nicholas. The Spitzer family next transferred to Camp Lejeune, Jacksonville, NC in 1995. Thomas went to grade school at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic School. He was a popular, excellent student active in soccer, baseball and the Cub Scouts. Thomas and the family settled in New Braunfels, TX in 2001 once his father retired from the Navy. SGT Spitzer had attended Comal ISD schools and was graduated from Canyon High School in 2009. During his middle school years Thomas was active in football, baseball, soccer and band. At his high school Thomas played in football, baseball and did power-lifting. SGT Spitzer worked after school and during summers at a variety of local businesses.
Thomas joined the United States Marine Corps with his close friend, John Farias just after graduating from high school. Once his training as a Marine was completed, Thomas was assigned to duty at Twentynine Palms, CA. His first deployment took him to the Pacific. SGT Spitzer deployed twice to Afghanistan. On his second Afghanistan mission he was killed. Thomas proposed to Casey Neef on New Year’s Day, 2014 at the ice cream shop where they had first started dating in the 8th grade.
SGT Spitzer will be remembered especially for his integrity, courage, reliability and his cheerfulness in the face of adversity. His former platoon commander wrote to Jean and John Spitzer, “I personally witnessed Thomas do incredible things. The calmness he brought to a fight eased the stress of those around him, enabling them to fight more efficiently. He also always acted with honor. He did the right things for the right reasons.”
“There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself in acts of bravery and heroism.” Alexander Hamilton