Fallen Soldier honored by unit, friends
Posted by Daniel Sauerwein on September 13, 2010
Courtesy of Captain Tanya Rosa
United States Division – South
APO AE 09374
RELEASE 20100911-01 Sept. 11, 2010
Fallen Soldier honored by unit, friends.
By Sgt. Cody Harding, 1st Inf. Div. PAO
BASRA, Iraq – Sgt. Brandon Maggart was sleeping when the sirens went off August 22. Seconds after the warning, a rocket struck the roof of his housing unit on Basra,. Fellow Soldiers of the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment rushed to his side providing medical aid. He was removed from the room and rushed to the troop medical clinic emergency room.
Brandon Edward Maggart, 24, a husband and a father from Liberty, Mo., serving his second deployment as an air defense artilleryman with the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, was pronounced dead on arrival.
Four days later, a memorial was held for Maggart at the post chapel. Hundreds of people came to say farewell.
On the stage, his commander, fellow NCOs, and Soldiers stood side-by-side to talk about Maggart. From Capt. Lloyd Sporluck, commander of Battery A, 5-5 ADA, to Staff Sgt. Simon Cannon, Maggart’s platoon sergeant, the message remained the same: he was a man of character and a person to aspire to be like.
“Brandon was a man whose life could be summed up in one word: excellence,” Sporluck said. “In my years of military experience, I’ve never met a man of greater character.”
Spc. Kandise Phillips, one of Maggart’s Soldiers, remembered her NCO’s contributions.
“As we all know, Sgt. Maggart was a great NCO, leader and friend,” Phillips said. “Spending the last eight months with him, I have learned he was just a kid. He loved to make everyone laugh and was always trying to make the most of every day.”
“Every time I had a question or needed something fixed, Maggart was usually the first person I asked,” said Staff Sgt. Richard Hauser, a platoon sergeant with Battery A. “In addition to being a great Soldier, Brandon was one of the rare people you meet that single-handedly raised the morale of the people around him.”
The ceremony continued with a rendition of ‘Amazing Grace’, sung by Chief Warrant Officer Cynthia Choo, liaison with the 201st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, and Sgt. Shina Richburg, a counter rockets and mortars system operator with the 1st Infantry Division.
The end of the ceremony was marked by the last role call, where 1st Sgt. Billy Lingar, senior NCO of Battery A, called the names of the sergeants in attendance. When he reached SGT Maggart’s name, he called three times with no response. Outside the chapel three volleys of a 21-gun salute were fired to mark the passing of Maggart.
At the end of the ceremony, each row stood and offered final respects to Maggart. As the line continued, the small memorial stand was soon covered with coins and personal effects as the Soldiers and officers offered tribute to the fallen Soldier.
Maggart is survived by his wife, Teresa, and his three year-old son, Blake.
Capt. Lloyd Sporluck, the commander of Battery A, 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, speaks to the assembled Soldiers and leaders at the memorial ceremony for Sgt. Brandon Maggart at the Contingency Operating Base Basra chapel Aug. 24. (Photo by Sgt. Cody Harding, 1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs)
Maj. Gen. Vincent Brooks, the United States Division – South commanding general, and Command Sgt. Maj. Jim Champagne, senior noncommissioned officer of USD-S, pay their respects to Sgt. Brandon Maggart at the Contingency Operating Base Basra chapel Aug. 24. Maggart, a member of Battery A, 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, is survived by his wife and son. (Photo by Sgt. Cody Harding, 1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs.)
First Sgt. Billy Lingar, the Battery A, 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment senior noncommissioned officer, salutes the memorial to Sgt. Brandon Maggart after the ‘Last Role Call’ during a ceremony at the Contingency Operating Base Basra chapel Aug. 26. The Last Role Call, followed by a 21-gun salute, is an expression of honor for Soldiers who fell in service to the country. (Photo by Sgt. Cody Harding, 1st Inf. Div. Public Affairs.)
Sgt. Brandon Maggart, 24, an air defense artilleryman with the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, was killed in a rocket attack on Contingency Operating Base Basra Aug. 22. He is survived by his wife and son. (U.S. Army photo)
For queries, contact the United States Division – South Public Affairs at USD-S_PAO@iraq.centcom.mil; by phone at (Iraqna) 0790-194-2865 or 770-263-9379. For more USDS news, visit our website: www.dangerforward.us.