Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Spc. William V. Fernandez

37, of Reading, Pennsylvania.
Fernandez died in Ar Ramadi, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle during patrol operations. He was assigned to the Army National Guard's 1st Squadron, 104th Cavalry Regiment, 28th Infantry Division, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Died on September 19, 2005.

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"Will was by far the kindest of all of the soldiers in our unit. It was a pleasure to serve with him, and I will be thinking of him this and every Memorial Day."
of Philadelphia, PA

"Hey Willy, It's Sibley. You crossed my mind again today - like you do on many many days. Been a long time since we took turns on radio watch in a stinky hide-site back in the 4/17. Anyway, I am looking into reenlisting - almost finished actually - and one of the jobs I am looking at is Medic. I remember how you did it - and what a great combination you were of fighting man and caretaker. It's a compelling combination and not just anyone can pull that off well, but you did. I think your fierce love of soldiering and love for your fellow soldiers made both things second nature to you. That to you it was not a jump at all between fighting fiercely and caring fiercely. You were just a man that had such a quiet intensity and the heart of a lion. Anyway, if I opt for a Medic slot - and if there's one available - I will have the best possible example to guide me. As always, in humble admiration of you and so grateful to have had time with you,
Sib

PS - don't give me any * about being OLD and having all ready been there done that and etc... You are in no position to lecture me on these facts since they could not keep you from being what you were always meant to be either. :-)"
R. D. Sibley of Maine

"Friends and family, please email me at SteveLord8@aol.com

I am putting the video for download online for all who want to get access to it."
Steve Ervin

"7-3-2009

Putfile.com is no longer around. I was able to post the video on my Facebook.

-SPC STEVEN ERVIN"

"The following is a link to a video I made for the 104th and their last Christmas party together.

I, along with former 104th member, Adae Fonseca, put a lot of work into this video and I did my best to showcase these guys in both serious times and fun times.

May it be an eternal reminder of Will...a soldier I never met, except through his brothers and wife he left behind whom I am forever honored to have met.

http://media.putfile.com/104th-LRS
.
.
."
SPC Steven Ervin of Grimes, Iowa

"August 3, 2008
To the family of Spc. William V. Fernandez:
William 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

"Hey Will

I thought I'd catch you up on some stuff. The 28th ID finally got thier way and disbanned the LRS. They rolled the few guys that didn't go to 19th group or MD LRS into the 56 Stryker BDE. Josh Kepner made SGT and a baby. His wife is due in August. Landis retired and so did Jake. Ian transfer to the Army Reserve and is working at Ft Dix training units Mobbing to Iraq. Fish is a PLT SGT now. Kevin just lost his Dad and Sister to cancer with in weeks of each other. Maybe you could look them up and show them the ropes there. Gutshall and Adams got out. Heath is trying to go Warrant and be a pilot. Block and Dorwart both went 19 group. Dorwart leaves for SFAS first but they should both be done by this time next year. I got the BN S4 job for 2-112INF. Yes that's part of the 56 BDE. We got our Mob Orders during AT. We go title 10 on the 19th of September. The 19th is always gonna be a bad day. Well Will I'll talk to you later miss you man."
Jeffrey K. of Littlestown, PA

"Mr. Bill,
Another Memorial Day soon to be here. Remembering you today, and every day, eternally greatful for the sacrifice you've made for our country."
Kathy V. of Prunedale, Ca

"To the family of:William V Fernandez 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"

"I went jumping with Sgt Fernandez's unit and the guys are still wearing bracelets with his name. He is very much missed among his fellow soldiers"
of Fort Indiantown Gap, PA

"hello my name is maria vidal iam the mother of sgt.anthony kalladeen who was kill in iraq on aug 7th 2005 i was sad to hear about your hub william v fernandez my pray go out to you and your family we never meet but i know how you must feel by loseing your lover one hope and pray we well meet one day god bless you and your family always truly your maria vidal a mother of a fallen soldiers"
maria vidal of reading pa

"I think of you and miss you every day. You are my hero, Will. Every Memorial Day is special because of you. Every freedom I enjoy is now because of you."
Jennifer Fernandez of Reading, PA

"REGRETFULLY, I NEVER HAD THE PRIVELEGE TO MEET WILLIE BUT HE'S MY COUSIN AND I AM PROUD TO HAVE BEEN RELATED TO SUCH AN HONORABLE MAN. MY CONDOLENCES TO HIS WIFE AND FAMILY...MAY THE LORD JESUS BE THE LIFTER UP OF YOUR HEADS. GOD BLESS YOU"
VANESSA of YONKERS, NY

"I will forever remember Will. I trained, lived & hung out with him on this deployment. I miss him everday."
SPC Nardini of hanover pa

"I am so very sorry for your lose, to me my family William V. Ferandez will always be a hero. We will never forget !"
Erik Miller of Sicklerville, NJ

"Will, Its been almost one year since your passing. This Sunday I will visit your grave to bid you a personal farewell. I last saw you in Ramadi Iraq before going on your final mission, you told me that your hair was too long and you would get a haircut as soon as you returned from your mission. You didn't return to us back in the FOB. Instead I carried you into a Humvee and then into a helicopter to leave Ramadi and return home to the USA. Our journey started back in 1991 in Fort Ord CA and came to an end in Iraq in 2005. You are a warrior and a brother who will never be forgotten."
Ben Gomez of Colts Neck NJ

"Here it is a year now, since you have left us and you are not forgotten.
Words cannot describe the feelings we all have for your missing presences
and in short we love and miss you all.

Dennis Amrhein"
DennisAmrhein of Mechanicsburg,PA

"I have a lot of fond memories of my stepfather, Will... he and I weren't always on the best of terms, as would be expected of any two people... but my mother told us constantly that we were more alike in personality than either of us would have liked to admit.

It's still hard, sometimes, when it hits me that he's gone. He really was something else... and the only consolations I have of his untimely passing is that he was doing what he loved to do... and that my mother has found her peace with it.

I'm supposed to be a writer... I should be able to have something bittersweet and lovely to write about him and in his memory.... but I don't have the words this time. I have no words in my repertoire that would do him the sort of justice I believe he deserves... but I did try ( Ramadi ).

I may not think of him every single day... but he will never, ever, ever be forgotten."
Lyz Duesterhoeft of Harrisburg, PA

"WE LOVE YOU WILLIE, AND YOU ARE MISSED. YOUR FATHER IS HAVING A HARD TIME DEALING WITH YOUR ABSENCE, BUT KNOWING THAT YOU DIED DOING WHAT MADE YOU HAPPY I GUESS IT MAKES IT A LITTLE EASY. I WISH I COULD HAVE SPENT MORE TIME WITH YOU, SO I COULD KNOW ALITTLE ABOUT YOU. I`M SORRY I DIDN`T. WE LOVE YOU AND MAY GOD HOLD YOU IN THE PALM OF HIS HAND. YOUR AUNT EDITH VALETIN. MY DEEPEST CONDOLENCES TO YOUR MOTHER CARMEN."
EDITH VALENTIN of 37 MULFORD GRDNS YONKERS N.Y. 10703

"To all Will's family, friends, and fellow soldiers:
I want to take this opportunity to extend to all of you, my deep gratitude for your prayers and thoughts for us. Will was born to be a soldier, and loved the military and his country enough to re-enlist at the ripe old age of 35. Will went to Iraq with a clear purpose and dedication. In fact, he was glad when the possible Bosnia deployment fell through because it gave him the chance to go to Iraq. We discussed everything - his new opportunity to serve, the possibility of never returning, and the future we would share after his tour ended. I want you all to know that I don't hate God and I don't hate the war. Will frequently told me how much good he was doing in Iraq by giving one more part of the world a chance to live free from fear and hatred. He told me of the children playing in the streets who would come running to him for the candy and gum he always carried for them in his pockets. He told me of the shopkeepers and local laborers who were so happy America came and freed them from Saddam's cruel reign, enabling them to live a normal life once more. He spoke of the old ladies who giggled delightedly because an American soldier was in their house. He wrote of the old men who shook his hand and thanked Allah that our soldiers came to Iraq. He told me about the courteous people who, after having their house taken over and searched by a squad of soldiers, would offer him chai tea and biscuits in gratitude for America giving them freedom. Will always spoke of how much he hated the idea of a wasted death, and how if he died in the military, it would be in service to a great cause. Will did not go overseas planning to die, but he surely achieved his goal in a life nobly lived to the fullest. A nun comforted me with the words, "A death given in service to your fellow man is the holiest of deaths, and there is a special place in heaven for them." I know Will is in heaven now, and we will all be reunited again. We kept a countdown calendar for his deployment. Now we are on God's countdown calendar, until our "earthly" deployment ends and we are called to our heavenly home and our reunion with Will and the Father. Will was a most special man who will never be forgotten by those he loved, and who loved him. May God's blessings give you all strength, and hope, and peace. Thank you all."
Jennifer Fernandez of Reading, PA

"I am the Supply Sergeant for the 104th Infantry Detachment Long Range Surveilliance. Wills home station unit. When it came to supply Will was a pain in my forth piont of contact. But when it comes to being a soldier I wish I could have a whole platoon of William Fernandez's. I am privileged to call you my frind and I look forwarded to the day we can be on the same manifest again. Airborne All The Way."
SSG Jeffrey K. Weatherly of Camp Taquaddum, Iraq

"I'm his baby sister I never knew who he was but, I miss him alot. At first i wasn't so sad but now i'm hurting inside so much but nobody knows. I just wish I was at his funeral so i could talk to him in my prayers all I could say is that i miss him and love him and that i'll see him in Heaven. I pray that he may rest in peace and that he would know that his family in yonkers love him and miss him. love you big brother."
Sasha Valentin of yonkers ny

"To the Fernandez Family from Donald Shook, Secretary of the 17th Infantry Regiment Association. My Prayers are with your family and it's extremely hard to find words to express my condolences. Willie served in the 4th Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment "Buffaloes" with me in the late 1980's and served in another conflict called "Operation Just Cause" in Panama. Willie will always be a hero to a lot of us and even though he served prior and put his life on the line in Panama, he still thought that he needed to do his duty. I have a picture of Willie returning home with the Medics of the 17th Infantry in 1990. If you're interested in having a copy, please contact me.

Good Speed, Buffalo ...

Donald Shook
deshook@7thinfantry.com"
Donald Shook of Pittsburgh, PA

"Sandman",
I will remember you always. May God Bless your family and comfort them at this most difficult time."
Kathy V. of Prunedale, Ca.

"TO THE FERNANDEZ FAMILY FROM THE WAHL FAMILY; OUR HEART AND PRAYS ARE WITH WILLIAM. AN PRAY THAT HIS FAMILY HEALS. WE ALL DEAL WITH OUR LOST VERY DIFFERENTLY. WE LOST OUR SON LAST YEAR IN BALAD, IRAQ. MY TEARS STILL FLOW,FOR YOUR SON AND ALL OUR FALLEN. VERY THANKFUL FOR WILLIAMS SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY. AN FOR BEING A MILITARY BROTHER TO OUR SON. GOD BLESS!"
LEONARD WAHL of VALLEY STREAM NY

"We Will NEVER FORGET !"
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness,
and we are remembering your family in your loss and your deep grief.
Our nations HERO, William will be remembered by name.
Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
God Bless you ALWAYS.
Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"Thank you William Fernandez, 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 Spc. William Fernandez:
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 William 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 Spc. William Fernandez:
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 William, 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