Lance Corporal Joshua M. Bernard
Joshua Bernard was home-schooled in New Portland, Maine and was an active member of the youth group at his church, Crossroads Bible Church in Madison.
Bernard enlisted in the Marine Corps in November 2006, and was assigned to his unit in May 2007. He served a tour in Iraq with Kaneohe's 2nd Warrior Battalion when it was sent to Iraq in January 2008. Bernard's unit, with the 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force, has been in Afghanistan since May. They are based out of Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay.
The 3rd Marine Regiment has been battling insurgents in Dahaneh after the Marines stormed Taliban-held strongholds recently. Dahaneh controls access to smuggling and trade routes to the north, which the Taliban uses to transport fighters and weapons.
Lance Corporal Joshua M. Bernard was serving as a rifleman when he died in Afghanistan's Helmand Province while supporting combat operations. Two other soldiers and three civilians were wounded in the attack on August 14th. He was 21 years old at the time.
A family friend is quoted in Maine's Morning Sentinel:
During his time as a Marine, fellow service members gave the religious Bernard the nickname "The Holy Man," Grooms said.
"He was a great example for Christ and a great witness," said Grooms, who works for the Bernard family business.
Bernard is one of 22 U.S. service members who have died in Afghanistan in August. Thousands of U.S. Marines have been at work this month trying to secure parts of southern Helmand province, a major Taliban stronghold.
At an appearance Monday in Phoenix, President Barack Obama warned an audience of veterans that the Afghanistan operation would not be quick or easy.
An early report of the incident that killed the Lance Corporal appeared in the New York Times:
A suicide car bomber attacked an Afghan National Army base in the southern province of Helmand on Friday evening, detonating an explosion at the gate that killed a soldier and wounded five other people, an Afghan official said.
The bomber tried to drive into the army base in the provincial capital of Lashkar Gah but was stopped at the gate, said Daoud Ahmadi, a spokesman for the provincial governor. Two other soldiers were wounded, as well as three civilians..
Taliban insurgents have threatened to send scores of suicide bombers in order to disrupt elections. There have been a number of suicide bombings in the last few weeks around the country and the police and the army say they have thwarted more.
Lance Corporal Bernard leaves behind his parents, John and Sharon Bernard, and a sister.
Governor John Baldacci ordered flags to be flown at half-staff the day of Bernard's funeral. He also released a statement saying, in part, "His bravery and sacrifice will be remembered."
Bernard earned a number of distinctions as a Marine, including the Purple Heart and the National Defense Service, Afghanistan Campaign, Iraq Campaign, Global War on Terrorism Service medals, and a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon.
The Patriot Guard Riders will be attending services for Lance Corporal Joshua M. Bernard at the request of his family.
Corporal Nicholas R. Roush
Nicholas Roush grew up in Middleville, Michigan, a small town southeast of Grand Rapids. He graduated from Thornapple-Kellogg High School in Middleville. According to a story at Fox17online.com, "Nicky" decided to enter the Army when he met a Special Ops Veteran while attending classes at Kalamazoo Valley Community College.
He joined the Army in 2007, and was assigned to the 1st Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, N.C. His military education includes the Warriors Leaders Course, Basic Noncommissioned Officers Course and the Basic Airborne Course.
The Corporal was able to come home for Easter. He left for Afghanistan in April, right after his visit. It was his first deployment. A WOOD TV8 news story quotes Nick's father:
His dad described Nick Roush as an "avid car freak" who was "really determined to serve his country." He signed up for a five-year Army committment, put on weight and developed language skills that he knew would be beneficial.
Roush, 22, died Sunday in Herat, Afghanistan from an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 1st Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, N.C.
He was a corporal in the Special Ops, his dad, Robert, told 24 Hour News 8. Roush spent time rebuilding cars, and while he was in high school, played golf for the Thornapple Kellogg team.
22-year-old Corporal Nicholas R. Roush from Middleville was fatally wounded August 16th in Herat, Afghanistan. An improvised explosive device (IED) had detonated near the vehicle while he was conducting a routine patrol. More quotes from his father are in a story in the Chicago Tribune:
The father of a Middleville soldier killed in Afghanistan says dealing with his son's death has been "devastating."
...Bob Roush tells The Grand Rapids Press his son "wanted to serve" and "do something significant" and believes he "has done that and more."
He says the family is "counting on seeing Nick in heaven."
The Army Corporal's awards and decorations include two National Defense Service Medals, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, two NCO Professional Development Ribbons, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Combat Action Badge and Parachutist Badge.
Corporal Nicholas R. Roush is survived by his father, Robert, his mother, Donna, and his brothers Bobby and Kyle. Funeral arrangements for Corporal Nicholas R. Roush are pending, but are expected to be held at the First Baptist Church of Middleville, Michigan.
Helping our troops:
If you wish to assist our military and their families, consider Operation Helmet, or Fisher House. If you have frequent flyer miles, they can be donated to hospitalized veterans or their families. See Fisher House’s Hero Miles program for details. Consider sponsoring a deployed service member at TroopCarePackage.com. Letters or care packages can make a real difference in a military person's life. To assist the animal companions of our deployed military, information is available here. Also, you could visit:
When our veterans come back home, they need jobs. Look at the programs of Hire Heroes USA and Welcome Back Veterans to see if you can help out.
Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service members mentioned here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.
About the IGTNT series:
"I Got the News Today" is a diary series intended to honor, respect, and remind us of the sacrifice of our troops. Click here to see the series, which was begun by i dunno, and which is maintained by Sandy on Signal, monkeybiz, noweasels, greenies, blue jersey mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, joyful, roses, SisTwo, SpamNunn, a girl in MI, JeNoCo, Mediaprof, and rb137. These diaries are heartbreaking to write, but are an important service to those Americans who have died and show our community’s respect for them.
Fallen service members whose names have been released by the Department of Defense will usually be diaried two days after the official announcement on the DoD website. This allows the IGTNT team to cover each person more fully, but still in a timely manner