Fallen Heroes of Operation Enduring Freedom

Remembering the servicemembers who died in the service of their country.

Army Sgt. 1st Class Mitchell A. Lane


34, of Lompoc, California.
Lane fell approximately 25 feet when he was conducting a fast rope infiltration into a known enemy cave complex in Afghanistan. Lane was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group, Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Died on August 29, 2003.

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"Hey brother, not a day goes by that I don't think of you, even after all of these years. I talk to your mom and Dave at least weekly. This last Saturday we finally broke ground on a memorial in town where you will be remembered by the community in perpetuity...Much love brother!"
Steve of Lompoc, CA.

"Hi Laurie;

I always remember Mitch and your great love and support for him as your son. I know it is Veterans day, however, it doesn't really matter what day it is. He was a HERO, a man's man, father and and amazing representation of what it looks like to be brave in spite of circumstances. I love you today and always....Kathy mccluer...sunny...chas"
kathy mccluer of salt lake city utah

"Our mortar section from 2-35 relieved 2-22 in 2004 at A-Camp Lane. Saw it go from a tiny base with only a few strands of concertina wire and three connex's to a full on fob. We used to go down the hill and shower in the river. It was an honor to serve there."
Bui of CA

"Thinking of you as always. Your name is mentioned often at Wear Blue events I go to and have donated a flag/poster in your memory for two of the upcoming races in our area. I'll be volunteering in your memory at both. I pray your family is doing well, I think of your girls often - the memory of them at your memorial still breaks my heart. Thank you for all the great memories of our Freshman year!"
Naomi Savaro of Fayetteville, NC

"Just visited you at Arlington today (26 May 2013), we hope Gina and the girls are doing well. You will always be remembered bro."
Eric of Ashburn, VA

"Just visited you at Arlington today, you will always be remembered bro."
Eric of Ashburn, VA

"Mitch, sitting in Kabul tonight indulging in reminiscence. One of those days you know? Bicycle bomber this morning downtown and then watched "Zero Dark Thirty" with the team. Now it's late and the past 11 years are playing themselves back on the movie screen of my mind. War and the uncollectable debts it incurs. Life growing-up in Lompoc was so simple, so carefree. I think I need to find that place again. Hopefully you have. If I make it back in time, I'll make another visit to Arlington on Memorial Day and see you then. But thinking about you and all the others tonight, and wishing the world were different. Rest easy."
J. Ivory of Virginia

"I was the last commanding officer of fob lane in Afghanistan. My men were proud to be in this fob and represent your son. I ensured they knew his story. We turned it over to ANA in October 2011. I personally know that the Seal teams used this base to wreck havoc on the enemy in your son's name. Thank you for your sacrifice. Together, we are free, we are strong, we will endure."

"Mitch,
It's been 9 years today. I'm still in 3rd SFG(A) and deployed again. I took some time today to remember my sniper buddy and the good times we had on the team. I miss your friendship. I'll never forget you my brother."
Roger

"God Bless Mitch. Mitch and I were best friends in Kindergarten when I lived in Lompoc. We later moved and lost contact. It wasnt until I saw the announcement of his sacrifice in the Army times. I had no idea that Mitch had joined the Army. We were both Sergeant First Class and had about the same years in service. I wish I would have known Mitch as an adult, we had so much in common. For Richard and Lori Lane, thank you for raising such a selfless individual, he will be truly missed.

Ricardo "Chacho" Herrera
Sergeant First Class (retired)
US Army"
R. Herrera of Nipomo, ca

"To the family of:Mitchell A.Lane
I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief and you have my thoughts and prayers. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Prayerfully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need prayer or need someone to talk to, please call or write my pastor: Rev. John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd., Covington, GA 30016. (770)787-1015.
Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew Covington,Ga""

"They got him Mitchell. I love and miss you brotha."
Stephen Palmer of Lompoc, CA. USA

"I can't believe seven years have passed. Mitch to me was: easygoing, candid, had a great laugh and a unique gift of accepting people for who they were. He took me under his wing as a cadet at Leonard Wood and I was forunate to connect again later at Bragg. Mitch you were one of the GREAT ones and are truly missed. All the best to his family."
C. Case of St. Paul, MN

"I love you and miss you so much daddy!!!
whenever I think about you I smile."
Michelle of College Station, Texas

"Mitch, its been seven years since we laid you to rest. Still in my thoughts. Your family, still in my prayers. My kids know not to touch the raiders coffee cup in the cupboard. Before you left Leonard wood for the q-course you came over and left it in my room. The memories of you and all our fallen comrades have led me to the American Legion. It helps being around other vets. Well buddy, say hello to Omar T. Hawkins and Chris Kukendal for me. I had a good visit with Art Leuchner last summer. We both laughed at our adventures in Korea and Leonard Wood. Miss ya bro and c-ya-there! SAPPER HOOAH!!!"
Michael C. Button of michaelcbutton72@gmail.com

"Mitch comes from a special family...and as special as Mitch was, so are the survivors in his family. Dave...Chris...the rest...too many to name, here's a hug! Let me tell you something about Mitch Lane. lol...he got it, he knew without having to know. His acknowledgment was his smile. LOL we had too many good times in High School. I know he was in the military and all but let me tell you something, Mitch was in tune to the hijinx of Lompoc too! LOL! He was a masterful participant. He was there and we all laughed. Then he was gone. But it's nice to see so many people that get to share this around the world. Who would have thought. He would be there sometimes with us at Jalama at dusk. It was nice then. God bless you Mitch, I still see your smile."
Raul Bollinger of Lompoc, CA

"Ahh Mitch, you broke my heart. I miss you brother. I knew Mitch Lane from the 44th Eng Btn. Camp Hovey, South Korea 1991; and then in Ft. Wood, Missouri 1993. Mitch was such a great guy, truly one of a kind. The first time I met Mitch, he had just come back from California with a full beard. He shaved it off in a hurry and left the sink filthy. When I called him on it (very pissed off) he laughed, apologized, and we became instant friends. Months later, he slams a steel door on my hand giving me an inch long scare (accident? hmm) something to remember him by. We had some good times in Korea. One time we were in Seoul, eating at a Korean McDonalds when some little kids started pointing at Mitch’s hairy arms and laughing, calling him (translated) a beast/hairy man. So we pulled back our eyes and imitated chin-chon noises. They got a kick out of it and opened there eyes real wide, and tried to imitate English by speaking slow and loud. My kids always get a laugh from that story.
Mitch would brighten a room, the life of the party. I will never forget you. My heart goes out to Mitch's family, I met your Mom in Missouri, and I remember her brownies in Korea. Thank you, your son made me a better person. Your wife and daughters are new to me, and if you ever need a good story, or anything ever, my door is open to you anytime. Mitch's family is my family.

Sincerely,

PFC John E Boulon (formerly from Chicago)
john.boulon@gmail.com"
John Boulon of West Palm Beach, FL. USA

"I didn't know you, but I paid my respects at your resting place in Arlington. God bless you and your family."
Bryan Harris of College Station, TX

"I Love you Uncle Mitch!"
-Jenise Walterscheid- of College Station, TX

"We love you and miss you."
Whitney Stupka of College Station, TX

"SFC Lane, i served 8 long months in De Afghanan Afghanistan. I wish your family the best life, because they deserve it. It would be a pleasure to serve at A-Camp Lane in your honor again. God Bless"
Zoro of Kansas

"Thinking of you Mitch and your family hope they always know they are in our prayers and hearts."
Chance Barlow of 169th ASOS Peoria IL

"Mitch,
I still can't believe it! I have known you my whole life! My mom tells me stories of when she used to babysit you and your brothers! I loved living down the street from you! I would always show you my "cool" new toys! You and the Lane family will ALWAYS be in my heart and prayers! Thank you a million times for your sacrafice! You are the defination of a HERO!
Until we meet again..."
Jackie A of Salem, OR

"November 26, 2007
To the family of Sgt. 1st Class Mitchell A. Lane:
Mitchell gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
www.IraqWarHeroes.org"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"It was my great good fortune to know Mitch from sweet babyhood to extraordinary manhood. From the time he would hug my knee to stand up to the last time I saw him at Ft. Bragg, his was that special ability to make all around him glad he was in the room. All of us who knew him are the better for it and much, much the poorer for his going. He saw his task to be service to his country and he gave his all. All of us who knew him give thanks from the depths of broken hearts that there are men like him who serve in our armed forces.

Uncle Claude, Linda too"
Claude Peachey of Corvallis, Oregon

"I remember the last night Mitch was with us, he sat in our TACP hooch and we busted open another guys mail from our unit that had gone home. Mitch and a couple of us ate two entire bags of Kitchen Cooked Potato Chips, and laughed our asses of making fun of each other. Thanks for the Memories and the Service Mitch! You are forever remembered in our hearts."
MSgt Chance Barlow of 169ASOS Peoria Il

"Mitch-as we celebrate the Birth of our nation-how can we forget our Heroes? Not a day goes by that I dont think of you-visiting Ft Bragg this past March saw the picture of you & Peter everywhere..Green Beret Club-Rogers office & Dougs home...how awesome is that? I miss you..Gods Hugs Terry."
Terry Harnden SFC Peter Tycz' mom of New York

"In 2004, I led a team of National Guard Engineers in the construction of A-Camp Lane in Zabol Province. It was named after SFC Mitchell A. Lane. It was an honor to construct it and work with the 3/3 SF guys. They still speak highly of SFC Lane."
SSG Obie D. Sims RRNCO of Ruston, LA USA

"In 2004, I lead a team on National Guard Engineers in the construction of A-Camp Lane in Zabol Province. It was named after SFC Mitchell A. Lane. It was an honor to construct it and work with the 3/3 SF guys. They still speak highly of SFC Lane."
SSG Obie D. Sims RRNCO of Ruston, LA USA

"We still think of you all the time and miss you and your family more than ever. We love you Mitch, Gina, and the girls!"
Shawn Sand of Fayetteville, NC

"I had the pleasure of having Mitch's youngest daughter in my class. She was a very smart and sweet little girl. I just wanted to let the family of Mitch know that they are in my thoughts and prayers on this day."
of Fayetteville, N.C.

"I just wanted to let the family know that i was thinking of mitch and his family on this day. I had the pleasure of having his youngest daughter in my class. She has since be to visit us and she is a very smart and beautiful little girl."
of Fayetteville, N.C.

"Happy Birthday, sweetheart. You'd be 37 now. We miss you so."
Your girls

"Mitch it was 2 yrs ago that while watching TV at home i saw your name on a veterans memorial on the channel 3 news... it still affects me to this day knowing that you, my longtime bro paid the ultimate price..... I have been honored to call Mitch Lane my friend and comrade-in-arms... you showed me many things.. from how to pick up rock stations on a PRC-77 to small unit tactics... i often listen to the cassette tape you gave me (Suicidal Tendencies,TSOL) and when i do it reminds me of all the good times we had together.. in and out of the field... since aside from your mom.. i think im the only one on here that has known you since you were the "leg" cadet fresh out of OCS....you accepted me not only as the oddball black guy surf punk,but as a good freind and ill keep that with me for the rest of my life... you showed me that quitting is never an option.. even when it seems that hell is breaking loose all around you....i have placed a picture of the Commo Section at the Ventura Veterans memorial.. and i have informed as many of the section as i am able.. i am still looking for some of the guys,I was your section chief,but it is you that are still teaching me lifes lessons mi amigo.5 yrs ago my health failed and i was diagnosed with kidney failure.... i have not only survived that. but also 2 yrs of being homeless.. and am curently starting my own investment business.... and i can say this with complete certainty Mitch...
I couldn't have dome it without you bro! thanks for the freindship.. the lessons in being a better soldier(and a man) and for setting an example that i will try to uphold for the rest of my years....guess ill go and have the beers we were supposed to drink when i saw you again... You will be sorely and forever missed.
and to the officers and men of Special Operations Command,3rd,5th,and 7th SFG.. i want to personally thank you all for taking Mitch in.. it was something we both wanted in life and im glad he made it... if anyone deserves the dive locker dedicated in his name.. its SFC Lane... Airborne! All the way!

William E. Jordan
SGT(Ret.)CA ARNG
Communications Chief
1-144 Field Artillery

P.S. Anyone who wishes to talk to me about Mitch can reach me at (805)651-9894"
SGT Eric Jordan (Ret.) HHB 1-144 FA CA ARNG of Ventura CA USA

"Mitch, My Bro.
Lost my best friend when you died. The picture of you and Pete Tycz, that was taken a couple of days before he died, will be up in the Green Beret club soon.
Love ya,
De Oppresso Liber"
Doug Sand of Fayetteville, NC Mar 2006

"Brother, You are missed by many, because you had a big heart and touched a lot of lives. I tell all my new Soldiers about your dedication to teamwork. You taught me a lot in SFAS and the Q course, I will forever be in your debt. Running into you in Afghanistan was a memory I wont forget, the last thing you said to me in this life was that if my family needed anything they could call on you. I will return the favor. I know you are watching over us all, we will meet up again one day. President Karzai was tearful when he signed your medal of valor, he has a lot of respect for you and your brothers in Special Forces."
Jason Howk of Wichita Falls, Texas, 2006

"I wear SFC. Lane's name on my wrist to honor his memory. I thank the Lane family for their gift and mourn for their loss."
Anthony Storch USMC 80-83 of Jacksonville, FL

"As the 2005 Holiday comes to an end..cant help remember all those who have come into my life. Thanking God for the many blessings...doesnt get any easier. I pray Mitch for your family to know peace and know the joy we will all share when we all come home..see you then my angel. Hugs to you and My Angel Peter..."
Terry _Peter's Mom of New York

"Mitch, (November 2005)
Still thinking you and keeping your memory alive as an inspiration to me and every Special Ops candidate I meet. As this would have been our second year assigned to JFKSWCS - an awesome break from the relentlessness of deployment. I have never in my life be able to spend an entire year with my children - uninterrupted by our work. I know you would have loved it too. I have trained around 700 students over the past two years, sharing with each all your contributions that made you the epitome of a SF soldier. I can see the inspiration and newfound drive in their faces as I speak of your dedication and loyalty to all that you believed and all that SF stands for. It was an absolute honor to have worked with you, be your friend and share some of the greatest times of our lives together. Thank you. We miss you. (and your funky taste in music!)

You were always a "fish" in water. One of the strongest combat divers I've ever known. So I wasn't surprised to hear that currently there are efforts being made to dedicate the 3rd SFG dive locker in your name. Becoming the Mitchell A. Lane, 3rd SFG Dive Facility. How cool is that!

I hope Gina and the girls are doing well and that the rest of your family in Cali know that we think of them all and often.

I'll see you again."
Charles of Ft. Bragg, NC

"Mitchell,
I would like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your family, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

"Green Berets All The Way"

"It's been two years now, and I can still hear your voice. Though it's imaginary, I still feel like I'm waiting for this deployment to end. This war is the forever deployment. Our girls still ask for you. You are still their Daddy. We miss you darling."
Mommy

"Now that i started to write something i am at a lost as to what to say. I miss ya roomdog and you are always in my thoughts and always will be. I dont think i will ever forget when i got the call from pat telling me about what had happened, that is a day that i will never forget. Like pat said, i still have that coffee mug with our pics on it from our midnight atack on the MP barracks lol, those for me were the good times and i will never forget them. That mug sits where i can look at it everyday so i can never forget. I wish it hadnt taken me this long to finally write something, i guess it just took me this long to accept it. Stand at ease roomdog and keep a cold one ready for when we meet again."
Bob Riddle of Columbia Missouri

"Merry Christmas, sweetheart. The girls and I miss you so much, we don't know how to be ourselves without you."
MItch's wife and children

"Mitch,
It has taken me a year to write this, as your passing was so very much a suprise for me. As soon as I heard I called Bob and let him know. He came to my house in Ft. Leonard Wood and we talked about old times in the 5th when we were together. He still has a coffee cup with all our pictures on it, and he doesn't even drink the stuff. I still have the pictures of our New Years together with the rest of the platoon. You touched our lives, from the moment that anyone met you their life was better for knowing you. You are the epitome of the words friend and soldier. I only wish that we had stayed in contact more. I will never forget the times that we had together, or the last time we spoke when you were in ANCOC. I'll see you later Bro, and we'll have a cold one."
Pat Moody of Kaiserslautern, Germany

"Mitch,
I truly enjoyed working with you. Without a doubt, one of the finest soliders I had the pleasure of working with. It was solider like Mitch that made everyone around him "step up their game a nooch". You are truly missed. In your immoral words, I will continue to "ROCK ON...!""
HANK, 363

"To the family and friends,

Our prayers are with you in this most difficult time and we thank you for your loved ones bravery and sacrifice. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. Your loved one is a hero. Greater love have no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13.

God bless you.

Home Front Ministries
Shepherd of the Hills Church
Porter Ranch, CA"

"Thanks for stepping forward when America needed you. To the family - Thank you for your contribution to our liberty and freedom. I'm sorry for your tremendous loss."
Ronald Carlson of Montrose, MN

"Sergeant Lane, goodbye soldier and thank you. You are my hero."
Bill of Houston, Texas

"My belated condolences and deepest sympathies to the Lane family and his close friends."
former CJSOTF SA of Arizona

"Mitch was without a doubt one of the most beautiful people I have ever had the pleasure to meet and come to know. I lost my son SFC.Peter Tycz, Afghanistan-June 12, 2002. Peter was on ODA 365..same as Mitch. Mitch came into my life and along with ODA 365 brought me the world. For a long time 365 was my sorce of comfort. They shared stories, sent photos and words of encouragement, they seemed to always know when I was in greatest need. To have this team embrace my family and me as they did was truly remarkable. Mitch was always in touch..letters, emails and phone calls. His smile and his laughing eyes will always be with me. He cherished his wife, children..and his family. I am always amazed by the "Soft Side" of these "Quiet Professionals." I received a beautiful picture of Mitch and Peter a couple of days ago...It had been taken by Mitch himself -holding the camera out in front of him and Peter on the day before Peter died..They had climbed a mountain and when you look at the picture from a distance it looks as if they are in the clouds, smiling. I smile knowing they are together..helping us to keep it together and continue "do what we must." Peters favorite words to me. The comforting hand of 365 lives on.
And thanking God every day for these men and praying for strength for our families helps me get through the "difficult times."
..I daily think of you. As Mitches birthday approaches I wish I could be there with you. Mitch spent Peters birthday with me at dinner in Fayetteville -the first year.. just know I love you. We know God is with us and that our loved ones are with Him...Hugs Terry"
Terry Harnden of Tonawanda, New York USA

"Dear Lane Family: I am so very sorry for your loss. Mitchell is a TRUE AMERICAN HERO and I will NEVER FORGET the sacrafice that he made for his family, friends, and America. I am forever grateful to him and will always keep him and his family in my prayers. Mitchell: THANK YOU. May you rest in peace. God Bless."
Jessica of Rio Vista.CA

"As a soldier in the unit with him, he was a great soldier.
WE WILL NEVER FORGET!!!"
S-1 of Ft Bragg, NC

"1st Sgt Lane was a real man. This was a combat soldier that showed bravey and dedication that few will ever understand, much less equal.

He died serving my country, protecting my family, and I am more grateful than my poor words can convey."
Tim Estes and family of Phoenix, AZ

"Dear Mitch,

My birthday buddy. Not a day goes by that I don't think of you. I see this picture of you, and I remember when you sent it to all of us...Who would have known? All the times we talked, and in all the time I've known you...I'm embarrassed to admit that I never considered it ending like this. You were an infallible soldier. You looked fear in the eye and laughed with a twinkle of mischief. I miss you. Thank you for being such a fine example of a man, father, husband, friend, and soldier. Your presence in my life is cherished, and your service to this country is an unforgettable sacrifice that will be honored. Guard the gates, soldier; we will see you again. With all my love, good memories, and gratitude...."
Dana Martin of Bakersfield, California, USA

"Thank you Mitchell Lane, you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"Mitch,

you're gone but not forgotten. I have nothing but good memories from our time in ANCOC together. My heartfelt condolences to your family in their time of need."
SFC Bill Strasburg of Stuttgart, Germany

"My heart felt sympathy goes out to the family and friends of the Lane Family. As a soldier myself, I look up to the Special Forces in all the Armed Forces, that make it easier for the rest of us to our jobs. I didn't know him, but he is still a hero in my eyes and in my heart. God Bless you SFC Lane!! Airborne!!"
SSG Tina Castillo of Fallujah, Iraq

"Our deepest sympathy to the family of Mitchell Lane, an angel on earth and now in heaven."
The Conklin Family of NJ

"I served with M Lane. in C-5th Eng 1993-95 at Ft Leonardwood, MO.
I can still remember in (spring)1995. when you were given the news you had made the CUT to go to SF.
You said.."Rico.. my dream come true!!!"
Wow man, I always wondered what ever happned to you since in the Army so many friendships are made and then we lose contact...
I just received the news from Tommy "Gun" ... I cannot believe it!.
A word for his family left behind...
What a great guy!!(my roomate).
I'll never forget about you man, or what you stood for!"
N. Rodriguez AKA "Rico" of Miami, FL

"My prayers go out to Mitches family and having worked with him, I can honestly say he is a man that anyone would inspire to be like. True patriot, friend, father, And a brother to all of us. He will forever be in our thoughts and hearts. "Sappers Lead the Way""
Jonesy (Leonard Wood Boys) of fort benning

"We never had the pleasure of meeting you but having known your wife when she was an undergraduate at Texas A&M, our prayers are with your beautiful family."
Feenan and ML Jennings of Bend, Oregon

"Mitch you will never be forgotten. Thank you for your support to our family after losing Pete and for all you have done to protect our country. You and the team are truly amazing men. God bless you."
Tracey Tycz of Tonawanda, NY

"I met Mitch at Peter Tycz's Funeral and I want to tell you that he was a wonderful man was so comforting to the family. We all loved him for all he has done as a man, friend, and soldier. May God bless you always. Thank you for your sacrifice for this country."
Edie Bailey of Amherst, NY

"Mitch-

You may be gone, but you are definitely NOT forgotten."
The Walterscheids of College StationTX

"To family and friends of Mitchell Lane: Mr. Lane has shown the world as well as his family and friends what a courageous man he was. Our deepest heartfelt sympathy is extended to his family and friends. May God's peace and love continue to shine upon you and may you find comfort in knowing that God's grace is everlasting. Our prayers are with your family."
Mamie Hicks and family of Missouri City, Tx

"To the family and friends of Mitchell Lane: There is no greater sacrifice than to lay down your life for others. Mitchell has made this sacrifice, and for that my family and I are truly grateful. May the God of all comfort continue to be your source of strength."
Emma Roberts and family of Missouri City, TX

"To the family and friends of Sgt. 1st Class Mitchell Lane:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Mitchell for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of Sgt. 1st Class Mitchell Lane:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Mitchell, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera of Powder Springs, Georgia

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on