Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Sgt. 1st Class Sean M. Cooley

35, of Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
Cooley died in Northern Babil Province, Iraq, when his vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 150th Engineer Battalion, 155th Armor Brigade, Lucedale, Mississippi. Died on February 3, 2005.

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"Sean was such a great person. We'll all miss him very much. My love and prayers go out to his family.

Steffanie Gutherz Miller of Colorado Springs, Co, USA

"To the family of Sean Cooley. I am so sorry for your loss but so proud of his duty to God number one, his family, and his country!! My husband is in his unit and he was in the same accident as Sean was, and is so very proud to have been able to spend time and grow to admire and LOVE him !! I think and pray for you always, God is always Here !! God Bless You!"
Lauren Walker of Hattiesburg, MS USA

"June 2, 2008
To the family of Sgt. 1st Class Sean M. Cooley:
Sean 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"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"Sean Cooley was an outstanding service man an will always be remember in my heart an never forgotten. He was more than a platoon sargaent or a friend he was a leader an someone to look up too an follow. He was like a second father to me"
Rodney Hattenstein of Lucedale,Ms

"Sean Cooley was a wonderful man and a great nurse. He was so patient and kind to my mother in the hospital. She talked of him until her death in May 2004. He was a sweet person and always willing to put others first. He always gave me a hug every time I saw him. I shall always remember him for the sacrifice he made for his country. I have prayed for his family and will continue to do so. God bless you and keep you."
Marline of Lucedale, Mississippi, USA

"Sean and I met in college. He was only a couple of years older than I. We had a night class together and he was a hoot. He was a GREAT PERSON!!! He had a heart of gold. He would do anything for anybody. He was a wonderful nurse as well. I was brought in to the ER one night and all he could do is say "Danielle what have you done now? He was compassinate about his jobs.. and most of all of his family. Sean is greatly missed and will always be in my heart and loved very much!!!"
Danielle Henderson Wolgamot of Ocean Spring MS formally of Lucedale Ms

"I was the C-130 Loadmaster (USAF) who flew his remains out of Baghdad to Kuwait on his journey back home. I will never forget you…"
Cortland Carrington of Abilene Texas

"I will always miss you Sean. The lunches we ate together here at Camp Shelby prior to you leaving I will never forget. I will also never forget the last time I saw you and what you said about family, friends, and fellow soldiers. To Mr. and Mrs. Cooley, I will forever miss the days of riding the ambulance in Lucedale with Sean and now know full well the loss you feel as I too lost my 7 year old baby girl on 18 October 2005. She is certainly in good company with Sean. HEAVEN IS A BETTER PLACE WITH THEM."


The soldier stood and faced God,
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining,
Just as brightly as his brass.

"Step forward now, you soldier,
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To My Church have you been true?"

The soldier squared his shoulders and said,
"No, Lord, I guess I ain't.
Because those of us who carry guns,
Can't always be a saint.

I've had to work most Sundays,
And at times my talk was tough.
And sometimes I've been violent,
Because the world is awfully rough.

But, I never took a penny,
That wasn't mine to keep...
Though I worked a lot of overtime,
When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at times I shook with fear.
And sometimes, God, forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place,
Among the people here.
They never wanted me around,
Except to calm their fears.

If you've a place for me here, Lord,
It needn't be so grand.
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't, I'll understand."

There was a silence all around the throne,
Where the saints had often trod.
As the soldier waited quietly,
For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, you soldier,
You've borne your burdens well.
Walk peacefully on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in Hell.""
Sgt. Ross of Mississippi

"Merry Christmas From Heaven

I still hear the songs
I still see the lights
I still feel your love
on cold wintery nights

I still share your hopes
and all of your cares
I'll even remind you
to please say your prayers

I just want to tell you
you still make me proud
You stand head and shoulders
above all the crowd

Keep trying each moment
to stay in His grace
I came here before you
to help set your place

You don't have to be
perfect all of the time
He forgives you the slip
If you continue the climb

To my family and friends
please be thankful today
I'm still close beside you
In a new special way

I love you all dearly
now don't shed a tear
Cause I'm spending my
Christmas with Jesus this year"
Vangi & McKaLyne Lunsford, wife & daugher of the late Sgt. Audrey Daron Lunsford of Batesville, MS

"I have just come across this as I searhed my son's name Sean W.Cooley in connection with an internet project he is involved with with his school here in Dublin Ireland. Sean is the youngest of my Three sons , he is aged 16. Sean M. was once 16 and I cannot every contemplate being without him.
Maybe, Sean M Cooley touched down at Shannon Airport as he passed through Co Clare Ireland on his way to Iraq, if he did Then I am pleased and proud.He was a brave man and we understand what being brave is about here in Ireland.
We watch the events in Iraq unfold on our tv screens, just like our troubled recent history did here in Northern Ireland. We know the human side to War.To read this brings it home to me that Sean M. has made the ultimate sacrifice, his parents,family and friends will continue to make it every day. God Bless you all."
Gerard Cooley of Dublin Ireland

"To Sean's family and friends, You are in my heart because I know your pain and loss. My son Chad (LCpl Richard Clifton)was killed in Ramadi also on Feb 3, 2005. Perhaps Chad and Sean were called on another mission requiring great men."

"To the family of Sean M. Cooley, I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Hopefully we will all meet in Heaven One day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need someone to pray with you or need someone to talk to please call or write my pastor at Gateway Community Church: Rev John B. Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd. Covington, Ga. 30016 phone 770-787-1015. Your friend in Jesus Christ."
Polly Ballew of Covington Ga

"Thank you for all you did for our country Sean Cooley.God bless you and your family.We will all miss you."
Chris M. Trout of St.Louis, Missouri,USA

"Sean and I were in school together at George County. We goofed off in study hall and were always close to each other. I moved away my junior year and we lost touch. I really miss my friend. He was a big part of my heart. Not a day goes by where I don't think of him. I'll always love him."
Audra Jimerson Lewis of Grand Bay, Alabama

"I didn't know Sgt. Cooley, but 2 days after his death my sons received a note back from him in response to a letter they had written to him. My children were so excited that a soldier responded to them, they have a lot of respect for the military. His card still sits on our fireplace mantle at home, which is the least we can do to honor an fallen hero. My condolences to his family we hold you deep in our hearts."
Dustin, Gretchen, Brendan, Dylan and Evin of Rogers, Minnesota

"Sean and I were friends since the first day of first grade. I will always miss my friend. Mr. and Mrs. Cooley are very fine people, and his widow, Laura, is just as fine herself. His brother and grandparents are first-class people. Who Sean was is reflected in them.

Sean and I were ten days apart in age, and when we saw each other, we were always happy. He was a fine soldier, and a fine friend. I think of my oldest friend all the time, and I was fortunate to have had him for a golden friend to be a child with and grow up with."
Richard Rogers of Bentley, Louisiana

"America and Jackson County, MS. are so much less at the loss of Sean. He will always be a hero to us here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Rest in Peace Brave Soldier."
Mary & Ray Dickson of Gautier, MS. USA

"I am glad that I had the opportunity to know Sean. I worked with him at George County Hospital. He made the long nights pass swiftly with all of his pranks. He was a super nurse. God bless his family for their sacrifice."
Stephanie of Lucedale, MS

"Sean, thank you for your sacrifice to our country. You will forever be in our hearts. You are a true American Hero. Now you are in God's Army watching over our troops still in Iraq. Stand Fast Sean Cooley."
Haley Veazey of D'lo Mississippi

Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, Sean, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you ALWAYS. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Sean Cooley. I lost my son on January 26, 2005 in Iraq. Those that have laid down their lives are the true heroes. May God bless you and comfort you during this time."
Helen Gilbert of Dayton, Ohio

"Thank you Sean Cooley, 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

"To the family and friends of Sgt. 1st Class Sean Cooley:
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 Sean 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 Sean Cooley:
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 Sean, 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