Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Marine Pvt. Nolen R. Hutchings


19, of Boiling Springs, South Carolina.
Killed in action. Hutchings was engaged in operations on the outskirts of An Nasiriyah on March 23, 2003. He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Expeditionary Brigade, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Marine Pvt. Nolen R. Hutchings.

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"Hey lil bud, this is your cousin Stephanie. I just want you to know how much your amazing courage opened my eyes about life itself. Your time on this earth was way too short but I think Pappa George needed you to keep him company in heaven. I love you lil Bud, you will always be my Hero!!!"
Stephanie of Houston, tx

"dang hoss you are the man, i want to talk to you so bad and discuss life's little deals that you would be going through,you are so mush like me,but if i was half the man you and your grandfather were(george nolen brown) i would be one hell of a guy. love ya hoss"
buddy brown of lakeland,fl

"hey hoss it's a full moon tonight,pretty cool huh i know you know what i mean. love you son, buddy"
buddy brown of lakeland,fl

"He died a heroic death."
James Otawaka of Trenton, New Jersey

"Ryan its been a few years since ive left a message for you. i havent forgotten about you and never will man. Once again I am deployed, this time to Afghanistan. Knowing what you gave up motivates me to keep on going. I promise to come visit you when I get home. Semper Fi from an Army Vet."
SGT Paul Acosta of Kabul, Afghanistan

"NOLEN YOUR RIDE WENT WELL WE RAISED 840.00 IN YOUR NAME FOR THE SHRINNERS HOSPITAL. SO EVEN YOUR NOT WITH US ANY MORE YOUR STILL HELPING SOME SICK CHILDREN. THAT OR SO GRATEFULL"
MARTY of BOILINGSPRINGS SC

"NOLEN I'M PUTTING ON A RIDE IN YOUR MEMORY AND TO HONOR YOU. WHERE RAISING THE MONEY FOR THE SHRINERS HOSPITAL IN YOUR NAME. HOPE IT TURNS OUT BIG TO GIVE YOU THE HONOR AND GLORY YOU DESERVE.I KNOW YOU'RE LOOKING DOWN FROM HEAVEN WITH OUR SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST. WISH I COULD HAVE GOT TO KNOW YOU AS I FEEL I ALREADY DO. GOD BLESS YOU HERO!!!"
MARTY of BOILING SPRINGS

"I knew this man when I was in the Marine Corps. I still have a pictures of him when we were in Okinawa, Japan in 2001. Our brief friendship and his greatest sacrifice have forever changed my life. Nolen has forever influenced my leadership values. I will teach my children what lessons I have learned from this. God Bless you Nolen and God Bless your family. 4-2-2013
Semper Fi"
David S. of Leesburg, VA

"hey lill bud gosh its been 10 years that seems so unreal anyway hoss you are still the man i brag about you everyday son you are so awesome love you son, buddy"
edward nolen brown sr. of lakeland, fl.

"To ALL who remember Nolen; There will be a 10 year remembrance / service at Northbrook Church on March 23 at 7PM. (2013). This will be the 10th year since he was killed in action."
Richard Carey of Spartanburg, SC

"wats up hoss u r the man bud i just wahted to tell that ur the man listen son i just cant stop thinking abought u if i was just halph the man u were i would b 1 Hell of a guy i love u hoss buddy"
buddy brown of lakeland,fl

"Nolen, how are you brother? Im getting by best as can be expected since i've been back my last tour. I just want you to know man, over 9 yrs and theres not a couple day period i dont think of all you guys. I miss ya man, i miss all of ya. Stand proud Marine, Sgt. Hunter D.D. S.C. (Florida now)"
Sgt. Hunter of Daytona Beach Fl

"Uncle Nolen I love and miss you! One day we will be together in heaven! Can't wait to see you again!"
Donald Sharp of Wewoka, Oklahoma/U.S.A.

"Hey brother. It's been a little over 9 years since you left us. I think about you all the time. I always wonder who you'd be today. I miss you so much man. God called home a great solider when he called you home. It still hasn't gotten any easier it hurts all the time. Sometimes when I catch a glimps of the even sky I swear I can see you there. I wonder about your mom and dad all the time too. I hope they are doing good. I don't know what it's like to loose a child but I know its something you can never get over. You should see the church now, it has grown so much. I know I'll see soon enough. Keep a warm spot open for me up there. I love you brother."
Chris Taylor of Boiling Springs, SC

"to the many women and men that knew my son, i would like to hear from you. i am nolen's natural father edward nolen brown sr. my e-mail is buddyh2o@aol.com thanks"
buddy of lakeland,fl

"Ryan,
Well its Dec,15 2011 and they say the war is finally over. We were in the same classes in high school and I think you went to bootcamp a month before me. I was in Iraq during the invasion and did not find out you made the ultimate sacrifice until I returned home. I am not in the marine corps any longer but still live my life with the values that the corps has instilled in us. I wear a memorial braclett in your honor and always come visit you when I make the trip to boiling springs to visit family. Thank you for the sacrifice you made for your family, me, the corps, and our country! You will forever be a hero!

"MANY MEN HAVE FOUGHT, MANY MEN HAVE RETURNED HOME, THOSE MEN THAT MADE THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE ARE THE HERO'S THAT WILL BE ETCHED INTO OUR MEMORIES FOREVER. SEMPER FI""
SGT ANDERSON of Winston-Salem NC

"My name is Justin Kirk Matthews. I was an Electronics Technician serving on the USS Ponce and was working on the mess decks along side Hutchings during our treck across the pond. He was a GREAT guy and and a dedicated devil dog. There is barely a month that goes by, even nearly a decade later that I don't think back on the men of 1/2 that never came back on board the ship to make the trip home. Every year, on March 23rd, I make it a point to spread the word about that day and the guys I came to know from 1/2. Semper Fi devil dog! You will NEVER be forgotten!!"
Justin Matthews of Manassas, VA

"To The Family: I was assigned as a recruiter for the Boiling Springs area shortly before Ryan left for boot camp. It was an honor and pleasure getting to know him and helping prepare him for Paris Island. He was a great young man and his passion and love for the Marines inspire me still. As I serve here in Afghanistan, his memory motivates me and reminds me of the ultimate sacrifice in honor of God, Country and Corp. Ryan will never be forgotten."
GySgt Fredrick Sloan of Kabul, Afghanistan

"I was just thinking about you and all the guys today. I wish you were still here brotha and we could have those good ole times that we used to have. I miss ya man and wish it was me who went and not you. At any rate, get out of Burger King and get back on post Marine. Those pearly gates aren't going to guard themselves."
Stephen Root of Union, SC

"I drove on a road named after you. It is such a beautiful place that you left to serve our great nation. Thanks for your sacrifice."
Mike Kelly of North Augusta SC

"Little Bud
I was asked by my employer to Google my name and see if anything came up,you are linked to my name thru Virginia Boynton,I remember you as a kid, always busy, will you meet me at the gates of Heaven cause I know you are there, I want to thank you personally for your sacrifice, Love Robert Boynton Sr."
Robert Boynton Sr. of Hobbs NM

"Ryan, I love you and miss you brother. I go to your grave site all the time and try and clean it up and bring some different flowers to change it up. I miss how you always made me laugh. My life has been empty for 8 years now. I wish I can be up there in heaven with you man. Semper Fi brother.

TO THE FAMILY OF NOLEN: Please get in touch with me (stephen.root@yahoo.com). I would love to meet his family that he talked so much about. I live in Union and try to visit him often. My kids know of how great he was and how he is a hero. With love and prayers."
Sgt. Stephen Root of Union, South Carolina

"Uncle Nolen I love you and miss you, and will never forget you i cant wait to see you again."
Donald Sharp of Wewoka, Oklahoma

"I'll never forget you man, and I'll always love you! Semper Fidelis!"
Franklin Romero of houston tx

"Drove him home to Boiling Springs several times. Got to be really close. I was a really good friend. Miss him so much."
Jason A. Phillips of Pickens, SC

"Nolan you are missed so very much. You are truely our hero."
Uncle Jim Brown of May tx

"lil bud i think about you every day,especialy on full moons. well anyway,son you are a hero, your dad buddy"
edward brown of lakeland, fl

"Hey Ryan. Its been a while since I have left you a message. I just wanted to let you know that your little sister made it to college. FINALLY! I am making good grades and I will be majoring in Early Childhood Education. I miss you so much and I cant wait until I get into Heaven and see your face once again. It has been a long 6 years and 7 is on its way. I miss you so much and I know things are better for you. I love you so much and you have been the best big brother anyone could ever ask for. I love you. O by the way I have a boyfriend now and his name is andrew. He is the greatest boyfriend in the entire world. I think he may be the one for me. Well its time for me to go home and study for tests. I love you and cant wait to see you someday soon!"
Brittany Gilbert of Boiling Springs SC

"On Memorial Day weekend 2009, I want to express to Ryan above and his family still on earth respect, admiration, and continued remebrance of this hero.

Sember Fi from a US Army vet,"
John Davis of Simpsonville, SC USA

"Ryan,
I cant believe it has been 6 years. MAn were do I even begin. On March 23 2003 i lost a great part of my life. YOU!!! SOmehow, thought everything is okay because I have had God's help tp get throught each and everyday. But it is dtill not the same.... i imagine how you used to go out to dinner with us and come back and go swimming. I remember the time that you threw me in the pull and i was so high in the air and i fell on my stomach. Even thought it hurt i would give anything for you to be able to do it again. I miss you so much... I think about you everyday and they say that it is supposed to get easier but it doesnt. it gets harder and harder everyday.... but i can say that i was proud to call you my brother and to be your little sister. LIke i said i cant believe it has been 6 years but i know that i will see you at the gates one day!!!!! I love you brother!!!!!"
Brittany of B. Springs

"Well it was six years ago that my heart broke and my happiness was taken from me. I thought it was suppose to get easier with time but it hasn't. I can still hear u and see ur face and everytime I hear about a marine I think of u first. I miss you so much but what more could I ask for than a Marine for a guardian angel I believe that is the best kind of all. Until we meet again you will always be with me in my heart and thoughts no matter what LYA!!"
Mica of SC

"I can't believe it's been six years. You will always hold a special place in our hearts. I will never, as long as I live, forget the sacrifice you gave for this country."
Tammy Gilbert of Boiling Springs, SC

"March 9, 2009
To the family of Pvt. Nolen R. Hutchings:
Nolen 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

"TO THE FAMILY OF PVT. NOLEN..I JUST WANTED TO PAY MY RESPECTS TO HUTCHINGS AND SAY THAT I MISS HIM EVERYDAY AND HE WAS A GREAT FRIEND AND BROTHER. I PRAY FOR YOUR FAMILY AND THINK OF HIM DAILY. MATTHEWS"
MATTHEWS of GEORGIA

"hey, ryan I miss you so much. everybody said that it would get easier but no it hasn't its getting harder and harder. On march 23, 2003 my life changed completely. my heart was ripped into pieces that day, and to this day it has not fully healed. I miss you everyday. I love you!!!! :)"
Catherine of B.Springs

"ryan,
hey i just wanted to let you know that i had a good christmas but i deff. missed you. christmas isnt the same without you. its a brand new year and better things.. i miss you and i will see you soon!"
brittany of boiling springs

"Ryan,

its brittany. Its Christmas eve and it just doesnt feel right not seeing you and giveing you your gifts. you are remembered in our family and we love you so much. thank you for everything. Merry Christmas!"
Brittany of Boiling Springs

"Ryan,
I will NEVER forget you. I will miss the fun times that we had together such as u going with my family on sundays and comin over to go swimmin or just to come over and visit. U r deff. in my thoughts and prayers all the time. I know that me and catherine talk about you all the time and we miss you. You were practically our BIG BROTHER! It is hard to beleive that it has been 5 years but in reality you have never left us. We miss you greatly. I can't waith until the day I get to see you again, I MISS YOU! I LOVE YOU!"
Brittany of Boiling Springs

"Ryan,
I will always miss you!! you were like my older brother! I LOVE YOU forever and for always :)"
Catherine Gaffney of Bsprins

"Wow! I can't believe it has been so long. I still find myself thinking of you and I tear up everytime. I wish I could just pick up a phone and call you. I never knew someone could have such an impact on another life as you have. You were and still are an amazing person. I can't wait to finally see your face again. I am so proud of you and so thankful to have you watching over me."
Christy of Harrisonburg, VA US

"I can't believe it but its been 5 years!! And it still doesn't feel like you are gone!! You have a new nephew...he is 5 monthes old now. I named him Christian Ryan.. After you!! Christian because you were dead set on becoming a Christian before you died and Ryan from your middle name!! He is SO cute! Looks like you...Stubborn like you..I wish you could see him! Lewis is going to school now. He is so smart...he tells everyone about his Uncle Nolen. I know you didn't get to spend much time with him, but Joe and I talk about you alot to him and he sees pictures of you with him and he asks alot of questions!! He is very proud of his Uncle Nolen!! We all miss you SOO MUCH! And can't wait to be with you again. You are our hero and I will never forget it and won't let anyone else forget either!!! I love you!"
Crystal of Spartanburg, SC

"Well its been 5yrs since you left us and not a day goes by that I dont hear ur voice or see ur face when I close my eyes. I know you are watching over me and are with me everyday b/c I feel content. You will never be forgotten and will always be my hero LYA"
Mica of SC

"Five years ago My family was heading down to Myrtle Beach for the weekend. It was the middle of the night and I was driving. As we traveled through S.C. I was flipping through the radio stations trying to stay awake and I came across some talk show talking about the tragic death of this young man. With a name like Nolen Ryan Hutchings I thought to myself what a very cool name one I will never forget. Today listnening to the news they were talking about it being 5 yrs and the first thing I thought of was this young man. And today 5yrs later it makes me sad now just as it did then. I didnt know you but you are in my heart. I cant tell you not one more name of a person who has passed because of this war but I will always remember Nolen Ryan Hutchings."
Meli of somewhere in NC

"hey ryan i just want to let you know that i think about you everyday.we went to the same high school and i remember you asking me for a ride home after school and teasing me because i decided to join the army instead of the Marines. i remember how proud u were and still are to be a Marine. i got word of your death while i was in iraq in 03 and was heart broken. i still get a lump in my throat when i talk about you around town to people who ask me about the war.the marines and this world have lost a really great man and im sorry we lost touch after high school. even though my son is only 2 i tell him my stories about the war and of the guys like you who are the real heroes. god bless"
Sgt Paul Acosta of Charleston, SC

"HOORAH - Stand Tall family , be proud and never forget. I didnt know him but he is my brother. Thank You
Sgt. Brust USMC"
SGT. Mike Brust of Union Mills , IN, USA

"hoo rah hutchings, i just wanted to say hey brother and hope you're doing great in heaven with my father (dont hold the fact he was army against him,lol) and all of our brothers in arms. theres bearly a day that goes by that im not telling a war story that includes you or how we debated the clemson/carolina game,lol. well, you still live on so you know. semper fi devil and hoo rah. see you soon, sgt hunter"
dannyboy of tx for now

"Well sweetie its been another year. There is never a day that goes by that I don't think of u or hear ur voice. I went and got a tat of a USMC devil dog I know you would have been proud and loved it but u already know I got it b/c ur my guardian angel watching down on me from heaven and ur with me every day helping me make it. You will never be forgotten "All Gave Some And Some Gave All" OOHRAH and Semper Fi sweetie.
lya"
MEW of K-town, SC

"May 30, 2007
To the family of Nolen R. Hutchings.
Nolen 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

"Well here we are again another year has passed but you have certainly not been forgotten. I think of you alot but especially on certain days you are in my heart and on my mind. I look at your picture before I start to write and it makes me even sadder then I'm already. I miss you and I thank you and all of the young men that gave there lives so that I can feel safe. It was a great price that you and many others paid and somehow I wish that I could fix every thing and bring you back. But I realize that it's not possible. I Love You, I Miss you, and I'm so glad that you were part of my life. Just wish that I could still talk to you and let you know these things in person. But I'm sure you know because your up there looking down on us. Miss you!!!!!!!"
Aunt Virginia of Hobbs, NM 88240

"just wanted to say thanks for fighting and dying to defend this great nation.wheather from the beganing or end from his time to this time for all time he will be remembered..no greater american than nolen who fought at a time when america need him the most"
eric flores of barstow california

"Ryan
I didn't have the privilage of knowing you but i know about how you changed peoples lives. I salute you and all that you have done. You are a true American hero and a TRUE MARINE.
SEMPER FIDELIS"
Lcpl Daniel Lillie of MCAS Beaufort

"Ryan,
We went to the same school and were in the same grade. I will never forget you. I know that the marines was something that you always wanted to do. I am so proud of you for making your dreams come alive. I will miss you always"
alicia of inman

"Nolen,
I would like to say thank you to you and the other Marines from the 2nd MEB who were killed in the fighting at An Nasiriyah for your service and sacrfice for our Country. And to your family, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

Semper Fi Devil Dog!"

"Ryan,

It's been 3 yrs and a few months since we had to say goodbye to you. There is not a day goes by that I don't think of you. I know if u were here you would do it all over again and that's what I loved about u. I know you are in a better place watching down over us now and that gives me peace of mind at night but until we meet again. You'll always have a special place in my heart.
Love Always,

Mica"
Mica of Kershaw, SC

"Semper Fi - We miss you down here on Earth - I can't wait to meet you in eternity to thank you for what you did for us while we were here in this imperfect world. Well done Marine!"
John Davis of Simpsonville, SC

"Bro,
Wow..even after 3 years I still am waiting for your phone call asking me to come pick you up at Camp Lejune, so you can come home for the weekend. It really is hard without you here. Everything is so much different now. Don't get me wrong, there isn't a person in this world that isn't prouder of you, we just miss you so much!! You know as well as I do we never were real close, but there at the end we started. We were finally starting to connect. All them times mom would say, "You need to be nice to each other, one day you may not have them." Boy what I would give to be able to go back and realize how true that statement actually was.
Like I said before it has been 3 years, and there isn't a minute that goes by that I don't think of you. I know its been that long and everybody says or thinks the pain should be gone and I should be able to focus on the better times, but its just not like that for me. I am torn to shreds on the inside. I just can't seem to get things together. But I put on a happy face and act like everything is just fine and I am okay and try to make it day to day. I just wish there was a way to see you. Its the hardest thing in the world to accept that you died over there but all we see is a flag draped coffin. I don't know what happened that day, never will. It would have just been easier to accept if we could have seen you. It just leaves alot of room for doubt. And it drives me crazy!!
Anyhow, on a better note..Lewis still remembers you, tells people about you, points you out in pictures..He's almost 4. 4 years ago June 21st you was running down the hall at Spartanburg Regional at 11:00p.m. screaming "I'M AN UNCLE! I'M AN UNCLE!!" That boy reminds me everyday of you.. Hard headed, Extremely Smart, Funny, Good looking, Hyper..The only difference I have found between you and him is its hard to get him to eat anything! As long as it is a salad, chicken nuggets, or french fries we are alright! Other than that he won't eat!! He really misses you too!
I really do miss you! And I really do love you. And I am especially proud of you! I know you are in a better place, but being the selfish person I can be I wish you were here. I love you and miss you very much!!!! Sis"
Crystal Vance of Gaffney, SC USA

"Ryan, I am so proud of you. I always knew you would go on with your life and make me proud. I saw that you had ambition and drive. But for you to do what you did for us and our country was probably the bravest thing anyone could do. I remember how you used to call me everyday after school at 3:50 Pm. The phone would always ring when I walked through the door after school. I worked with you at McDonald's and we were really good friends. I will remember the good times we had. The last time I saw you, I didn't speak. We just waved at each other at the mall. I am so glad and thankful to have had the pleasure of knowing a soul such as yourself. I always think of you. You truly are my hero. I recently moved to Harrisonburg, VA, but it's people like you who made Boling Springs South Carolina a great place to live..and it's people like you who will make this town a great place to live. I Love You!"
Christy Cagle of Harrisonburg, VA USA

"Hey Nolan! I am certain that you are in GOD's wonderful kingdom. I know we do not know each other but during Airman Leadership School, we were instructed to do tributes to our fallen comrades in the military. I chose you and as soon as I concluded with my presentation of your bravery and admiration for serving our country, the whole class gave me a standing ovation. I am amazed at what you have accomplished. Right now, I myself am serving in the military. It is a commitment that I have decided to embark on. It's been a long six years in the Air Force but there's nothing like it. May GOD continue to bless you and keep watch over all of your loved ones."
SSgt Edwin A. Espiritu of Vacaville, CA USA

"Nolan,

I know we never really hung out in school but I remember you as a smart head strong guy who stuck by the two things you loved most in life, God and the United States Marine Corps. I remember the day I heard that we had lost you in Iraq. It was a wierd feeling for something like that to happen to someone you know. I was shocked at first but then that shock turned to a since of pride. I was proud to have known such a person. A man not afraid to fight for what he believed in. A man who would stand strong in the face of adversity and say "I AM NOT AFRAID. I AM A U.S. MARINE." I thought you should know you are a big part of my dicision to enlist in the military. I felt a drive within myself to enlist and fight because of you. I will never forget you or any of the others who were hurt or killed fighting for freedom and democracy. I only hope to be half the man you were my brother and I promise to serve your memory and our country to the very best of my ability. I leave with a quote "A coward dodges a thousand deaths but a HERO only dies one."-Unkown.

"HONOR COURAGE COMMITMENT""
Seaman Recruit Brandon Pettit; U.S. Navy of Spartanburg, Sc

"I live in Boiling Springs, SC and have for over 15 years. The memory of this fallen hero is alive and well in the thoughts of our community. I am a retired US Army Major and recently joined the Marine Corps League Hutchings-Caldwells Detachment 1134 as an associate member in an effort to show my respect for this young man and the price he paid to keep us free. As I serve in the MCL I will do so in the name of our hometown hero Nolan Ryan Hutchings."
Major Tony Ivey (Retired) of Boiling Springs, SC / USA

"Happy Birthday Nolen!
We miss you so very much and on your day think of you dearly. We love you!"
Virginia Boynton, Robert Jr. and Brandi Ramos of Hobbs, NM 88240

"HEY SON, GOSH EVERYBODY SAYS THAT IT GETS EASIER AS TIME GOES BUY, BUT I DO NOT GET IT. I'M NOT HOME MUCH BUT WHEN I AM AND I HERE THE DOOR BELL OR A KNOCK AT THE DOOR, MY HEART BEAT JUST ABOUT JUMPS OUT OF MY CHEST HOPEING SOME WAY IT IS GOING TO BE YOU. NOBODY CAN REPLASE YOU SON. LOVE YOU YOUR DAD."
EDWARD N BROWN SR. of LAKELAND FL.

"Ryan,
Hey babe. It is so hard to believe it's been a little over two years since that day. I miss you so much and there is not a day goes by that I don't think about u and what could have been. I want to thank u for serving and doing what u loved best and I know if you were still here you would do it all over again. After two long years I got peace of mind now. I know you are watching over me. You were and always will be my guardian angel. I will see you again one day but until that day you will never be forgotten. LYA:)"
Mica of Kershaw, SC, USA

"Hey Nolen, well its been 2 years hasnt it? I still remember you Marine, and we the veterans of this war, will never forget you and the thousands of other heros who never made it home. Im over here again for the 2nd time now, Iraq is different now, good changes are being made, and it is thanks to men like yourself, these children will grow up in a free country. I'll drop by now and again to say hi."
SGT. Jerry P. Hagy Jr. of FOB GABE, BAQUBAH IRAQ.

"Ryan,
It was just the second anniversary. Nad it is so hard for me to know that you left this world on March 23. This day is my birthday and what should be a happy day for me has been a sad day for the last 2 years. I miss you so much and I think about you often. I am so glad for the sacrifice you made and I am very proud of you. I miss you so much. You are my hero and I know I do not have to worry because I know I will see you again one day."
Danielle of Spartanburg, SC

"Hey Nolen how is it going up there in paradise? I sure it is awesome. I hate that you had to leave us so soon, but I know that you are plenty happy where you are. I am very glad that we got to talk alot before you left by email and instant messenger, were would we be without technology. In this case it came in handy. I went to what the world calls your funeral and it was beautiful, it was awesome the people that came to support you. I love you Nolen and think of you all the time. well I know that this is not goodbye because I will see you again when we meet up in paradise. When we stand before the Lord that we both love. You are the greatest hero I know. I love you always. Your cousin"
Brandi Ramos of Hobbs,NM Lea county

"Hey Nolen how is it going up there in paradise? I sure it is awesome. I hate that you had to leave us so soon, but I know that you are plenty happy where you are. I am very glad that we got to talk alot before you left by email and instant messenger, were would we be without technology. In this case it came in handy. I went to what the world calls your funeral and it was beautiful, it was awesome the people that came to support you. I love you Nolen and think of you all the time. well I know that this is not goodbye because I will see you again when we meet up in paradise. When we stand before the Lord that we both love. You are the greatest hero I know. I love you always. Your cousin"
Brandi Ramos of Hobbs,NM Lea county

"Hello Ryan, here it is the second ann. of hero. You're too young to be "remembered," you had a whole life. It's a little after midnight and I am here breathing life that you gave up for me. For you have added a smile to day, a bounce in my step, a memory that can never be forgotten, for i will tell my children how a friend laid down his life for me. I live right next to your new memorial highway, very proud to view it daily. I want to say something here that will put your friends and family at ease, that will make it all better, but there are so words to describe the knot in my throat whenever March 23 rolls around. Today in class there was a story and the main character's name, believe it or not, was Nolen Ryan. I sat there, a smile crossed my face. The man in the story was a strong male figure with a heart of gold. Does the name come to every person like that? Seems so...."
Addie of Greenwood, SC

"Nolen;
Here it is the 21st day of March just one day from being two years since you left this earth to be with our Father in Heaven. I know that you are in a much better place then we can even imagine, but still the selfish person that I am, misses you so so much. You were always extremely special to me, Brandi, and Robert Jr. It's hard to believe that you're not here with us... I think of you so very very often and I remember your kind heart and the really special person that you have always been to me. When I think of you I feel like crying, but then your fond memories cause me to smile. I love and miss you terribly."
Virginia Boynton of Hobbs, NM Lea County

"Nolen the second anniversary of your sacrifice is upon us. We all miss you lots and always think of you.It's so hard to believe you aren' with us.John and I still talk about how you always wanted to buy him a pick-up when you grew up,you were always such a giving person. I went to your funeral and have never been to one so moving and beautiful. The heartfelt songs and poems,the friends from your church, family,and friends you didn't know you had,were all there for you.The towns people lined the streets with flags to remember you by.You would have been so proud of the hero you are to everyone. We all love and miss you,but I know you are in a better place now, with that big smile we all love. We love you,Aunt Pat, and Uncle John"
Pat Fore of Chowchilla,Ca

"NOLEN WE ARE CLOSE TO THE SECOND YEAR OF THIS TRAGIC EVENT. I HAVE TRIED SO HARD TO DO WHAT YOU HAVE ASKED ME TO DO. I SUPPORT OUR TROOPS OVER THERE 110%, BUT I DON'T SUPPORT THE GOVERNMENT OF THIS COUNTRY AT ALL. IF YOU KNEW WHAT THEY HAVE PUT US THROUGH YOU WOULD UNDERSTAND. YOU HAVE BEEN HONORED IN SO MANY WAYS. YOU WOULD BE SO PROUD. YOU'RE MY SPECIAL HERO, WITH A HEART OF GOLD AND THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SMILE IN THE WORLD. I MISS YOU SO MUCH, THERE IS NOTHING TO DESCRIBE IT, WHAT I WOULD GIVE TO SEE YOU DRIVE UP IN THE DRIVE WAY AND WALK IN THE HOUSE. I STILL CAN'T BELIEVE IT ALL HAPPENED. I NEVER THOUGHT IN A MILLION YEARS THAT IT WOULD HAPPEN TO YOU. NOT ONE DAY OR EVEN A HOUR GOES BY THAT I DON'T THINK OF YOU, YOU ALWAYS GAVE ME THE BEST HUGS. YOU ARE MY VERY SPECIAL HERO, MY LIFE, AND I AM SO PROUD OF YOU. I LOVE YOU ALWAYS. MOM"
CAROLYN HUTCHINGS of BOILING SPRINGS SC

"Dear Hutchings Family,
My name is Addie and I graduated from Boiling Springs High School a year ago. I was the McDonald's worker who wrote the letter and left it at the school during the memorial day for Ryan. I just wanted to let you know that he enters my thoughts quite often and I have cried for him on many days. I know that I did not know Ryan from a personal standpoint but what little I did know of him, he still touches me. I know it is entering the two year anniversary and I think of him almost daily now. He was a very humerous man, with a huge heart and smile to match. I hope your family is doing well.
Addie Hutchins"
Addie Hutchins of Lander University, Greenwood/SC

"dear hutchings, it has been a while since i left a message or talked to your family. i just wanted you to know that i haven't forgotten any of you and i do think of you all everyday that passes by. i have moved on from my old life and to be honest have tried to forget alot, but i can't. my days and mostly nights are haunted by old memories and thoughts that in a way i feel bad for wanting to forget. anyways hutchings, like that movie,''we were soilders once, and young''. you did more than anyone could ever do for your country and will always be remembered for that. i just wanted you to know that even though years have passed it still seems like yesterday to alot of us. semper fi marine,and if it could be me i would gladly trade places.i will see you like i said before in formation in the sky,lol. and hey marine, your uniform better be amazing, j/k. well, i'll let you get back to your duties , so, ''as you were'' talk to you soon. p.s. south cackielack misses you but hasn't changed. your friend and brother in arms, cpl. d.d. hunter usmc"
hunter, d.d. of florence s.c.

"Ryan,
Man I can't believe that your gone. It still blows me away that it's been this long. It seems like the other day we were in church together cutting up. I will never forget the sacrfice you made for me and the country you so loved. Your memory will live on here in Boiling Springs as well as around the world. I thank God that I had the chance to know you....I will never forget...Stacey"
Stacey of Boiling Springs, SC

"1/16/05
Thank you Nolan for your brave actions in protecting the freedoms we all cherish. By taking the fight to those cowards who ambush and run you have made your country and all of us proud. You are our hero and we will remember you each day we raise our flag in the front yard. To your loved ones, take comfort in knowing that when you close your eyes for the last time, standing there smiling with open arms will be your Nolen. From a very grateful American family."
The Shaw family of Pasadena, Maryland

"Ryan,
You were the greatest friend anyone could have. You were always there for me no matter what. I wish I had been there for you. It hurt so bad when you left us. But I know that it was what you wanted to do. I remember you telling me that if you had to die for your country to protect us, then you would. Thank you for everything you did for me and this country. Also thaynk you to the Hutchings family for the sacrifice that you made. I can't even imagine the pain you felt. But know that Ryan will always be in my heart and on my mind. Thanks Ryan"
Danielle of Spartanburg, SC

"Nolen, My name is Jerry Im a Sergeant in the U.S. Army, and Im from Boiling Springs, I did not know you in life, but I fought near you in Iraq. Its funny, when I got home, everyone told me I was a hero, but they are wrong, you are the real Hero, you and everyone else who never made it back. I wish I could have known you Marine, we went to the same high school, just a few years apart, and grew up in the same town. Its just a shame that I did'nt meet you untill after you were gone. We might have been good friends. I wear a bracelet with your name on it to remember you and honor you, so others wont forget either, but like someone once said,"As long as there is a Marine corps lives, you will live.""
Jerry P. Hagy jr. of columbus ga

"Dear Marine and Family,
There is never any words that can comfort a family of a lost one especially so young. I served in the Marines from 1967-70 having gone to Vietnam 1968 0311 Grunts. Although Marines die in war the Marine Corps lives forever and as long as the Marine Corps lives Marine Nolen R. Hutchings lives. We will never forget him or anyother Marine that falls in battle. God will never forget Marine Hutchings..he has a special place for Marines in heaven after all who is going to police heaven when things go amuck. God Bless Marine Nolen and all those that go before him from Tun Tavern to present."
James Jones of Branson, Missouri, USA

"Pvt Nolen R. Hutchings, although we have never met, we do share the same ground. I may not know what exactly happened, but that does not mean I do not feel the pain either. I am a recon marine who was sent out on that investigation patrol. I just want to let you know that I wear a memory band around my wrist everyday to remind me that some of us pay the ultimate sacrafice, but all of us are never forgotten. Each one of my team members have a memory band for each one your fellow marines who fell with you that day. This time when I go back, I know that there you will be watching my six, because every marine looks out for each other. God speed to you and your brothers and as always, semper fi."
Cpl Connelly of San Antonio, Texas

"hello son, well today you would have been 22. these are the years that i had figured on us being together, you know after you got away from under your mother. and things were going in that direction, untill this damn deal with bush and iraq. and even after seeing you before you left son, never in my wildest dreams did i think that you wasn't going to make it back. i regret waiting , thinking we had plenty of time to be around each other. son i think of you constantly, i always have, but now i have to tell it to that empty hole i have in my gut that i cant seem to find anything to fill it with except guilt. you brought great honor to the Brown and Hutchings names. i miss you so much. happy birthday Edward Nolen Brown Jr. (a.k.a PFC Nolen R. Hutchings USMC} semper fi son,love you"
edward n. brown sr. of lakeland, fl / usa

"RIP Marine"
Petty Officer Cawthon of RTC Great Lakes, IL

"DEAR PVT.HUTCHINGS, I KNOW IT HAS BEEN A WHILE SINCE WE HAVE SPOKEN. ALTHOUGH OUR PATHS ONLY CROOSED FOR A SHORT AMOUNT OF TIME IN THE MARINES BEFORE WE WENT TO THE WAR I KNEW YOU WERE A GOOD MAN. AFTER I RETURNED HOME TO OUR BEAUTIFUL STATE OF S.C. I RECIEVED A PHONE CALL FROM MY MOM ASKING IF I KNEW THE MARINE FROM S.C. WHO WAS MISSING, ONCE I WAS TOLD THE NAME IT ALL RUSHED BACK. I REMEMBERED THAT BRIGHT, MOTIVATED PRIVATE FROM MY HOME STATE. I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT YOU DIDN'T GET LEFT BEHIND IN THAT DESERT THAT WE SWEATED IN AND TALKED ABOUT OUR HOME AND FAMILIES IN. YOU ARE BACK IN SOUTH CAROLINA SITTING UNDER A SHADY TREE TRYING TO STAY COOL.YOU ARE INSIDE OF MY HEART MARINE ,AS WELL AS THE REST OF YOUR BROTHERS THAT MADE IT HOME.
ONCE I FOUND OUT WHAT HAD HAPPENED I CALLED YOUR CHURCH SO THAT I COULD GET IN TOUCH WITH YOUR FAMILY. I CALLED AND SPOKE WITH YOUR MOM A COUPLE OF TIMES TO SEE WHAT,IF ANYTHING I COULD DO. SHE IS VERY PROUD OF YOU AS AM I AND EVERYONE ELSE THAT KNEW YOU. AFTER I CAME HOME I DIDN'T WANT TO GO BACK, ESPCIALLY SINCE I HAD BEEN WOUNDED ALREADY. BUT WHEN I FOUND OUT WHAT HAD HAPPENED I WOULD HAVE PACKED UP RIGHT THEN AND LEFT AGAIN. YOUR MOM WAS SO WORRIED THAT THEY WOULDN'T FIND YOU AND I FELT LIKE I COULD DO SOMETHING IF I WAS BACK THERE AGAIN. THEN THE NEWS CAME THAT THEY HAD CHANGE YOUR STATUS TO K.I.A. AND EVEN WORSE THAT IT MAY HAVE BEEN OUR FAULT WAS CRUSHING. I HAVE A PICTURE OF YOU AND SOME NEWS PAPER ARTICLES I SAVED TO ONE DAY TELL MY KIDS ABOUT YOU AND THE SACRIFICES YOU MADE FOR YOUR COUNTRY.
I ONCE HAD SOMEONE ASK ME ABOUT WHAT WE DID OVER THERE AND IF THAT MADE US BAD, MY RESPONSE WAS SHORT BUT VERY TRUE. I TOLD THEM THAT,'' I KNOW WE WILL GET INTO HEAVEN WITHOUT A DOUBT, FOR WE HAD ALREADY SPENT OUR TIME IN HELL.'' I'LL SEE YOU WHEN I SHOW UP FOR OUR ''FORMATION'' IN THE SKY.
TELL SERGEANT REISS THAT I SAID WHOO RAH. YOU TWO TAKE CARE OF EACH OTHER , GOD SPEED AND SEMPER FI."
CPL. HUNTER D,D, of FLORENCE S.C.

"no one could ask for a better hero than you. if someone was able to tell you thanks for your sacrifice, i know what you would do and say. you would grin and say your welcome with no reservations. there are a lot of your relatives and people that knew you when you were younger that do not recognize your adoptive name (nolen r. huthchings). so for all them and for me especially, i salute you son EDWARD NOLEN BROWN JR. you have made everyone and especially the BROWN family so proiud. your father Edward Nolen Brown Sr."
edward n brown of lakeland fl.

"I always hate to hear when a Marine falls in battle, but know that you will always be remembered and honored. For you gave your life for your country and your Corps. Now go serve proudly for the great commadant in the sky, our lord. Gaurd the gates of heaven steadfastly. Semper Fi. HOORAH!"
Cpl Greene of South Carolina

"I never actually knew Ryan Hutchings. But from what I understand, he was a very caring and compassionate person. Godspeed, PFC Hutchings, you did your country proud. You made me proud to be an American."
David McDowell of Spartanburg, SC USA

"In loving Memory..Its been a year..

At the rising of the sun and at its going down, We remember them.
At the blowing of the wind and in the chill of Winter, We remember them.
At the opening of buds and in the rebirth of Spring, We remember them.
At the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of Summer, We remember them.
At the rustling of leaves and the beauty of Autumn, We remember them.

As long as we live, they too will live;
for they are now a part of us, as we remember them.
Rest in Peace Dear Soldier!!! We will NEVER FORGET!"
The Grogan Family of Lakeland, TN

"We Will NEVER FORGET !" As the first anniversary of the death of your loved one arrives;
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering all your family and loved ones in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, Nolen, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

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

"Rest in eternal peace brave soldier!"
Dan and Meg Manninen of San Antonio, Texas

"Hi Devil Dog. I wrote here months ago. We have NOT forgotten you after all these months. I come to this site once a day to see all the Hero's. I will always remember your sacrifice. I think about you each daily.Thank you. RIP and Semper Fi"
The Taylors of USMC, NC

"Thank you Nolen Hutchings, 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

"His gallant soul has but taken flight into the land where there is no night. He has only gone on into a brighter and more wonderful dawn. His fight for our country will forever be remembered. His spirit I'm sure will live on, this sorrow is only God's will. Pvt. Hutchings, Sgt. Orenthial Smith (my nephew) and all of the other HEROES are looking /waiting for us."
Betty Smith Thompson of Hollywood, Fl

"We'll never forget your face or your sacrifice. Walk with the lord know and rest in peace, The Taylors in NC"

"Our never ending gratitude to Nolan and sympathy to his family. You are in my prayers and may you never feel alone in your time of need."
W. of Flushing, MI

"My deepest sympathy to the family and friends of Nolan. May God and time help to ease your pain. Your son will not be forgotten. God Bless and keep you."
Kellie of Montana

"I think about Pvt. Hutchins everyday: I thank God that there are the brave and the proud protecting us in the USA and those who can't protect themselves outside our country. Thank you Private Hutchings, When I get to Heaven, I can't wait to salute you. God Bless your family."
JT Davis of Simpsonville, SC

"To the family and friends of Pvt. Nolen Hutchings:
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 Nolen 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 Pvt. Nolen Hutchings:
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 Nolen, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera, of Powder Springs, Georgia

"Deepest sympathy to Nolen's family and friend for the ulimate scarifice.

God Bless All."
Susana Contreras Czerwinski of Sturtevant, WI USA

""YOU WILL BE MISSED BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN" OUR DEEPEST SYMPATHY GOES OUT TO YOUR FAMILY AND ALL OF BOILING SPRINGS. FROM THE FAMILY OF A US ARMY SGT SERVING IN IRAQ. THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS YOU. THE HAGY FAMILY"
of BOILING SPRINGS

"YOU WILL BE TRUELY MISSED AND REMEMEBRED AS A GREAT HERO TO US IN BOILING SPRINGS AND ALL OVER THE UNITED STATES"
THE CASSADY FAMILY of BOILING SPRINGS, SC

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