Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Sgt. Chad L. Keith


21, of Batesville, Indiana.
Keith was on mounted patrol in Baghdad, Iraq when his vehicle drove past an object that exploded on the side of the road. Keith was assigned to the 2-325th Infantry, Company D, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Died on July 7, 2003.

Keith was posthumously promoted to Sergeant on August 1, 2003.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Army Sgt. Chad L. Keith.

Links:

Contributions to the Families of the Fallen

Messages:

Leave a message in memory of this servicemember, and/or to the loved ones left behind.

Please report inappropriate messages

"God bless Chad and God bless america"
anonymous

"Thank you on this Memorial Day! Tears are not enough, thank you for your gift of love to me personally and to all of America. Sending through the air a kiss, a hug and a pinkie wave!"
Deborah Glutz of Milford, Ohio

"I love you."
T

"Happy Veteran's Day. I love you. 19 more weeks and I'll be visiting you! <3"
-T

"I love you."
-T

"It's now been 12 years without you. Miss you like crazy. Love you."
Tasia

"Happy Fourth. We all love you."
-Tasia

"Thank you."
-Tasia

"Happy Memorial Day uncle Chad. thank you for risking your life for all of us. i just wish God could have brought you back home to us. we all love you and miss you like crazy."
The Family: mom, dad, courtney, ron, tasia, jaedah, justice, alex, and alyssa

"I love you."
Tasia

"One of my goals for 2015 is to come see you for my 16th birthday! :)"
Tasia

"Merry Christmas! Love from all of us :* :) <3"
Tasia

"Happy Thanksgiving, wish you were here to celebrate with us"
Tasia

"Happy birthday uncle Chad. I love you :)"
Tasia

"I've been thinking about you a lot lately after Veterans Day and with your Bday coming up. I'll never get over that night when you were taken from us. That mission will haunt me forever. Still love you a lot and I can honestly say you were one of the best men I ever knew. Rest in peace brother. I'll never forget you."
Justin of Hershey PA

"Happy Veterans Day. I love you. Thank you for serving <3"
Tasia

"Just wanted to say I love you and miss you. Things are ok. I started a journal where I write to you and hopefully I'll be able to leave it with you some day."
Tasia

"Hi chad its Jaedah and we havent met and i know u miss taisa mom dad and justice and probably not me but i just want to say i love u and i miss u!:)"
jaedah of nobl

"I love you"
Tae

"Hey you might not remember me but I'm your neise Ron but the rest of the family calls me Justice not much had happened but me and Alex has developed a good friendship but I got bored today and googled you and this site came on I'm glad I found it I'm currently 12 and is like uncle Alex your brother I play video games a lot and draw and makes everyone laugh I miss you but I always wonders wear you were when you went to the Army then a few months later my mom was crying then I found out about your death. I want to join the Army as well but my dad wants me to go to college first i wonder why. Uncle Alex went to the Army to I'm glad he got back alive I couldn't bare to lose another one of my uncle's.I hope you watch over me when I achieve my goals and go of to college but I struggle in school. Grandma gave me some of your stuff like your big blanket I ways have it on at night and the purple teddy bear with my name on it so I just wanted to say hi and what's happening. I love you :D"
Justice Creech of Noblesville,Indiana

"Happy birthday uncle Chad I love you <3"
Tae

"Chad,
I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy. After reading all the messages left for you all I can I say is that I wish I had the honor of serving with you when I was in the Military.

Airborne All The Way-Let's Go!"

"Ten years uncle Chad. Its hard to believe. I love you SO MUCH :)"
Tae of indiana

"Happy Memorial Day uncle chad. Thank you for everything you've done for us, you love, and your care. We love you"
Tae, Jae, Justice, Courtney, and Ron of United States of America

"I can't believe it's going to be 10 years next July since the night you were taken from us. I think about that mission everyday and replay in my head how maybe it could have turned out different. I wish it turned out different. I look back at that night and it changed my life forever. I still miss you man. You would of turned 31 a few days back. It's crazy how time flies. You are always in my prayers."
Justin of Hershey PA

"I had the honor this past Memorial Day Weekend (2012) to wear SGT Chad L Keith's name on my race bib while running in the "I Ran The Grid" road race in East Northport, Long Island. Even though I did not know Chad I wanted to make sure his family knows how thankful I am for all Chad did and sacrificed. He is not forgotten and will always remain in my thoughts and in my prayers. Thank you again"
J.Tully of Greenlawn, New York

"hi uncle chad. im looking through pictures of you and just thought i'd stop and leave you a message. miss you hope your doing well
~Tae"
Tasia (Tae) of U.S.A

"hi uncle chad. sorry i have been leaving so many messages. its just my stress reliever and your my favorite person. i really miss you. there's nobody i can talk to about it but you. when i talk to you all my pain goes away. i love you. hope you and uncle james are having fun"
Tasia of noblesville indiana

"it's me again. uncle chad i couldnt take the holding back anymore last night. i let it out and cried for two hours and couldnt seem to stop. i know your already guiding me anyway entirely possible, but i really need help this time. i mean after next year i'll be in high school and im still trying to figure out which path to take for life before then. i want to be a famous singer but mom and dad are holding me back, and then i want to be a teacher but dad wants me to be something better than that and i dont know what to do and im all stressed about it. i need help and i cant figure out a plan. please give me signs or something. love you"
Tasia of Noblesville, IN.

"To the family of:Chad L.Keith
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""

"hi. i couldnt hold back leaving you a message, i just miss you too much. uncle alex did finish your buisness in iraq. we're all proud and he's coming our way for christmas and new years eve. its really hard to believe that the last time i really saw you was when i was three, before you left to do your job. you left a great footprint on us, the family, and its still here. it will never go away i know it. i'll keep a close eye on everyone for you. hopefully one day i too will leave a big footprint. love you uncle chad <3"
Tasia Creech of Noblesville. In

"i went to your memorial just last weekend. after they uncovered the new rock they made for your tree in the park in batesville, i was holding kayte and she wanted to go up to the rock. she smiled at it and almost touched it, but then she stopped and walked over to me. we played in the park after that. it was good playing there, knowing you and i used to play there together. it uncovered memories for me that i can not forget, ever. uncle james is there with you now. reunited friendship, it must feel good having him back. uncle alex is where you were now. we all know he'll finish what you started. i'll be with you again when i'm ready. hopefully i can talk mom and dad into letting me come and visit you. that sounds good, talking to you when i know your actually there. all i want is a conversation and hug from you again. hopefully that'll be this summer. hopefully. i found out your favorite poem is a road not taken by frobert frost. i didnt find that out until i went to your memorial. then i also found out thatms the poem we used for an activitie in LA in school! i love you! never gonna stop."
Tasia Creech of Indiana

"uncle chad,
i miss you with all my heart. i turned twelve this summer. i got my first cellphone! i love it. when i was looking through scrapbooks, i found this picture of you holding me in your arms and i thought, hold back the tears Tasia be strong he loves you you know it. im in seventh grade now and its going good. i remember on the day of your funeral i begged mom and dad to let me go with them. uncle chad, your special, your my idol, and i love you. dont lose touch with us. love you with all my heart.
your niece,
Tasia"
Tasia of indiana, usa

"emmalee looks at your pictures when she's crying when i'm holding her. Your picture makes her stop crying and she studies your face. She must be thinking, that's my uncle chad. he's our hero."
Tasia

"when we visit granny in batesville for a week in the summer, we always stop by and leave you flags. When we were there this summer, i left you a little green heart necklace. Please stay with me and the family. love ya."
Tasia

"my uncle, my hero, my heart. I love you uncle chad. Your america and i'm proud of you. I stand proud with tears in my eyes when i think of you."
Tasia

"My little brother, and best friend. I miss you,Chad."
courtney

"Hey chad miss you brother. Still my hero man"
Alex of Ft Bragg NC

"i miss you more then ever uncle chad! always remeber your america! i love you soo much! i want you back! i just cant understand that your gone! love you!"
Tasia Creech of noblesville, IN. 46060

"Our grateful nation will never forget the sacrifiice you have made. I am with a group of cross stitchers " American Soldier Memorial Project that honor our fallen heros with homemade memorials. I would love to send you a memorial to honor Chad. It is free of charge and my way of honoring our heros. Please contact me if you will allow me this honor. Thank You, nicholsjan@sbcglobal.net"
Jan Nichols of Dyer, IN

"Chad, It has been many years, since I have spoken with you, we were dear friends when you first moved to Batesville. I will never forget you and after alll these years you are often on my mind. You were one of the sweetest guys I have ever known, and I as many others will always remember your smile. You died to protect us, and at the same time, really loved what you did. I am truly saddended by the entire worlds loss in losing you so young,. We graduated ten years ago this year, and I never had a chance to see oyu after to let you know even though through high school our priorities changed, I want you to know that you were special to me and will never be forgotten Thank you for looking out for all of oyur country , rest in peace my friend!"
Becky Gray of Indianapolis, Indiana

"dear chad, we really miss you. dad`s birthday is tomorrow, and mine is this coming up thursday next week. did you see the flags we left at your tree? we really miss you! love ya!!!"
tasia creech of noblesville, in. usa

"next year chad, promise."

"Miss ya buddy!"

"Chad, I totally agree with what Crystal said...you truly don't know what you have until its gone. Although I know you are still around for all your family and friends that loved and that still love you! I can't thank you enough for the friendship we shared and the many memories that I still cherish! You are a blessing in so many ways to everyone that had the opportunity to meet you and to your wonderful family! Love you always and one day we will meet again! ~Michelle~"
Michelle of speedway, IN

"Chad, I miss you so much! I guess it is true, you never know what you have until its gone. I never realized how close you and I truly were until you were gone. Don't get me wrong, I always knew you were someone special, but I never knew I could miss someone as much as I miss you! I still have that scar on my knee from your shoe during field day your senior year. I hope it never goes away because its part of you that I'll always have with me! You were a great guy and anyone that had a chance to meet you are truly blessed! Thanks for being a part of my life and still visiting me from time to time. I can always feel your presence! God Bless you. I love you and always will! Hugs & Kisses...PS I am praying for your family...you have one of the best that I've ever had the pleasure of meeting, Chad!!!"
Crystal Dickman of Gray, TN

"This day is for you Chad"
Adrian

"Brother you will be missed. I am sure your standing on the big DZ awaiting the other Falcons. May you Rest in Peace."
Bob 2/325 82-85 of Connecticut

"i miss ya chad!how is heaven? tell me all about it in a dream tonight when you visit me in it!!!!!!!!!!!??"
Tasia Creech of noblesville, in

"chad, can you visit me in a dream every week?! it will help me better and will get my feelings out the door. jaedah is very beautiful, justice is the best little bro and the same thing with jae jae. i love ya!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!$♪"
Tasia Creech of of noblesville, indiana

"Hello Chad. We never knew each other. I'm sorry we didn't get to meet. My brother Justin talks about you all the time. I want to thank you for helping him when he came to the unit. He always told me how you took him under your wing. Showed him the ropes. Taught him what it was to be a soldier. It's something he's never forgotten to this day. I am grateful he had a friend like you over there. I'm grateful to you for being his brother in a time and a place when I couldn't be. R.I.P. Chad. You've touched the lives of more then you know. Even those of us whom have never met you. May you sit in glory with the Lord."
Adrian Marella of Fla

"I can`t believe it`s been seven years since i`ve seen you, chad. i really miss you. mom and dad will not let me get a dog even though tala will get along with it and we have a backyard. please let me meet my big sister alex soon! i need her in my life. nikki, if your reading this, hi! can hannah and i have a sleepover? call me if we can. i love you nikki and chad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
Tasia Creech of noblesville,in

"i love you chad. i still can't believe it's been almost 7 years...

it sucks. but i thank you so much for sending such a wonderful guy to me.

i can't wait to come see you."
nikki

"I love you, chad! have fun up there!"
Tasia Creech of of noblesville, IN united states

"I REALLY MISS YOU, CHAD. R U HAVING FUN UP THERE. I LUV U."
Tasia Creech of Noblesville, IN United States

"i know your watching over me chad.i feel like thunderstorms are visits from you."
Tasia of Noblesville,IN United States

"i really miss you, chad. kate bug is always looking at pictures of you and smiles. she, joe, and nikki are doing good. katelyn is very playful. she is always smiling when she sees me. i bet you five dollars that she loves you always. you don`t have to bet. i was just kidding. if you were still here, we would have a lot of fun together. we would probably spend every minute together. i will always love you chad. not a second goes by when i don`t think of you."
Tasia Creech of Noblesville IN United States

"i hope you are watching me from heaven, uncle chad. yes, me and everything else are going great. jaedah and justice are good. so are mom and dad. i am doing the best i can to take care of them just like you told me what to do before you went off to iraq. if your wandering what i want to be when i`m older, i want to be a singer. don`t worry, i am getting better at sining. thanks for being there for me. ilove you uncle chad. love, Tasia"
Tasia Creech of Noblesville, IN United States

"i miss you very much chad. nikki had a baby named katelyn. she is very cute, funny, smart, and is growing up so fast. everybody wishes you are alive. everybody also wishes that you could see kate bug. yes, i do call her kate bug. i love you chad. sicereley, tasia"
tasia creech of noblesville indiana united states

"i am chad`s 10 year old neice. i miss him very much and i cry every day for chad. i was only three when he died. i hate the people who set up that bomb. i miss him very much. sometimes i wish that i could see him or ask god to make him alive again."
tasia creech his 10 year old niece of noblesville indiana united states

"I was @ Arlington the day they buried you. I didn't know your name, your age or what you did for me. Until the next morning, reading the paper of your service. Thank you....I carry that article with me in my Bible and pray for your family everyday. I have spent years looking for a way to contact your family and hug them...One day I am returning to Arlington to pay proper respect to you...We're the same age and gave your life so that I can have freedom. How selfish of me not to say thanks...Thank you...and to your family, MANY prayers for strength each day and thank you for your sacrifice as well...GOD BLESS YOU!!!"
Rachel of Visalia, CA/USA

"your neice seems to already know you. she stares at all your pictures, especially the one i have hangin in our living room. and she will smile so big. its hard for me to tell her about you but i do talk to her about you. and she smiles even bigger. she must be thinking "silly mommy i already know"

we miss you chad. we are bringing kayte to see you next summer right before her first birthday."
Nikki Glutz of Noblesville

"Happy 28th Birthday Chad, You fought your way into this world, made everyones lives better, then fought your way back out.
Miss you always. Love Mom"
Kim Hitzges of Noblesville, IN USA

"Chad, I don't know if you would even remember me. I knew you when your mom lived in Albion. You were still in diapers. I remember you sleeping on the couch, and I would sometimes sleep on the floor beside the couch so you wouldn't fall off and hit the floor. I used to sit in you time out chair. Lordy that was a long time ago. I have lost touch with many people, your family included. And for that, I am ashamed. You grew to manhood, became a soldier and paid the ultimate sacrifice. I hope you lived you life well, you made many friends it seems who miss you and love you. Bless you Chad, and thank you."
Gary Snow of Platea, Pa

"Hey Chad, Fabrizi's coming your way bro. Keep an eye on him."
Adam ward of Cincinnati, Ohio

"Well it's been 6 years already. Time flies. I think about you and that night all the time. Seems just like yesterday. I'm married with a son now. Hard to believe right. I'll take them to see you soon. I still remember all those long ORS prep nights and stupid lay outs with Holmgren. Rest in peace bro"
Justin of Pa

"Hey Keith, it's been 6 long years bro and I still remember everything. You will never be forgotten. A lot has changed since we saw eachother last and I wish I could say it's been easy. I still haven't been able to visit you, just haven't found the right way or time to. I have a daughter now, I gave her your middle name, Madison Lynn Ward. She's a good kid, she'll be 3 in September. Your mom sent her a rattle when she was first born, I swear it was her favorite thing for a year. I still talk to Del Valle time to time, we miss ya bro. I still get a laugh when I think about when you turned 21 and us three went to ITZ... One to many huh. I have the picture of u clearing rooms with your wooden rifle in the barracks on Christmas on my wall. When my daughter is older I tell her all about our adventures and our ranger experience. Ha rangers lead the way right. Brother I'll never forget and I wish things could have been different. You are a heroe and life will never be the same with out ya.

Adam Ward
delta 21
D co 2/325 AIR"
Adam Ward of Fairfield, Ohio

"Heh, 1/325 i missed your unit by an inch.. its alright. im truckin through ft bragg carryin mortars and stuff. Its been 6 years. I regret i couldnt join sooner. Sometimes staying motivated is impossible here chad. All i think about is what you did here. You left a hell of a footprint and im still amazed by it. I know you were a damn good soldier whose dreams were cut short but thats why im here. im going to finish what you started here bro.. count on that ranger tab ill swing by and pick yours up on my way through. its hard bro.. its real hard. I love ya and miss you alot. You were and still my idol that hasn't changed. You earned your rest bro. You'll never be forgotten."
Alex

"i miss you."
nikki

"It has been a short time the last time we talked. Your sister is doing well, I am taking the best care of her i can. She needs your humor and i try to fill that void. Kids are doin great and your about to be an uncle AGAIN. You can see down here knowing that this world is changing. Its sad to see all the pain here. But you and i have an understanding of that. Just needed to say something to you. Love ya bro. See ya in the next life."
Dragon Creech of indiana

"It has been a short time the last time we talked. Your sister is doing well, I am taking the best care of her i can. She needs your humor and i try to fill that void. Kids are doin great and your about to be an uncle AGAIN. You can see down here knowing that this world is changing. Its sad to see all the pain here. But you and i have an understanding of that. Just needed to say something to you. Love ya bro. See ya in the next life."
Dragon Creech of indiana

"i can't believe its been this long. i miss seeing you and talking to you. i want to come see you really badly! but joe and i are going to wait til the baby is born. i want our baby to know all about you and what a great bother and friend you are!!

i love you chad! and i think about you everyday! i am so happy that i have a big brother like you!"
Nikki of Noblesville

"Chad,
Hard to believe it's been almost 6 years now. I know I should have made it to see you already but every time I go I just can't seem to make my feet move. It's hard bro. I think you would understand. I take leave in July so I will come see you I promise brother. Keep up the watch bro and I'll see ya soon"
CPL Jeff LeClair of Fort Bliss, TX

""For all that you have sacrificed to help make this world we share a safer, better place." You are thought of often, especially today, Veterans Day. Chad, your gift of serve will be remembered and to your memory are my tears shed today. Thank you!
I now have the gift of your sister as my daughter-in-law. Joe is taking good care of her, and she is keeping good care of him. I know you are watching over them. Thank you!"
Deborah Glutz of Cincinnati Ohio

"In Memory of Sgt. Chad L. Keith

THE FALLEN SOLDIER


Don't weep for me
O' Land of the free
When it was my time to fall
'Twas for my country's call
'Twas for the land that I loved,
That I gave my all
And for the land that I loved,
I did freely give
And in her freedom
And her courage
I'll continue to live

c. 1993 Patricia Krull"
Jason Royalty of Eastview,Kentucky USA

"To family of Sgt. Chad Keith I hope time is helping your pain. And know that your loved one is still remebered and honored. May the Lord always be with you all. Here is a peom I found on internet.

The Hero

The angel hovered just above-
The lifeless form below-
A life that started with a cry-
Not many years ago.

Come now my son, you must arise-
Your work here now is ended-
You have fought for right and freedom-
Your country you have defended.

We go now to another place-
Where peace and love abide-
And join your comrades who will greet you-
In your heavenly home on high.

All those you love, and those who love you-
In their hearts you will forever be-
The one who gave his very all-
That the living may be free.

By-
Ex Sergeant, Claude Peter Dhuet
USAF World War II
August, 27 2003"
Jason Royalty of Eastview, Kentucky

"I promised you i would never cry my brother of marriage even when everyone was crying i held my strength as i promised, i watched u grow into the man u are and i miss u dearly, i will keep my other promises i made to you until the day i die. Your family misses you and always will. Keep an eye on them from above and i will down here, see you in the next life. Love u, Your oldest sisters *-kicking husband!"
Ron creech of Indiana

"June 15, 2008
To the family of Sgt. Chad L. Keith:
Chad 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

"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself.
--John Stewart Mill--

Chad needed no inspiration from Soldiers in his family; rather it is he who continues to inspire them."
Anonymous of THE United States of America (June 2008)

"Dear Kim, Mark & Family;

I still keep you in my prayers and think of you often. Many thoughts of you are deep in my heart and soul and will always be. I ask God; "to be with you forever"."
Debra Smelser of Charleston, SC

"Chad, This past summer Cyndy and I left flowers from Courtney's rose bushes at your memorial in Batesville, IN. I hope you saw them. You must have laughed at Cyndy running barefoot through the park in the downpour with lightning flashing and thunder booming all around. You can't imagine how beautiful Tasia is now, or tall Justice is, or grown your little brother and sister are. Or maybe you can as you watch over them? You live on in their hearts and minds. We will continue to honor you in the ways that we can, but especially with Courtney's flowers in the spring. Dec. 27, 2007"
Laura of Charleston, SC

"Thank you for your sacrifice and everything that you have given me. I am forever in your debt. Miss you bro"
Joe of Noblesville, IN

"Happy veterans day. Your not forgotten."
Old paratrooper of PA

""it's in the bag baby!"
~Chad

my favorite quote of yours!"
nikki

"i love you"

"i miss you so much. that day is getting closer and i wish that i could just skip that day. chad i miss you so much.

i hope your proud of me! i want you to be proud of me. I know that i didn't turn out to be that awesome lawyer you thought i would be...maybe one day.

chad, i miss you so much! its so hard to remember the happy times we had together and all the fun stuff we did. All i can think about is when we got the news you were gone, the last time i got to see your face, and your funeral at arlingotn.

i remember when we saw you at Roger's it just didn't seem real. I thought you would jump up and say its all a big joke and its not real. but it never happened. remember that one time you were on leave and told me that if i cried at your funeral you were gonna haunt me??

i need one of your hugs!! i miss you so much chad and i love you!!!"
nikki

"Blue skies and Soft landings, Rest in peace"
Paratrooper of Ft. Bragg, NC

"It's taken me so long to do this. I think about Chad often, still. I am proud to have known a young man, a friend, with such a spirit and drive. I have a polaroid of Chad that is etched forever in my mind, what a charmer! I hope everyone keeps his memory alive, his ambition to succeed was unlike anything I've seen. Maybe one day I'll stop crying for my friend, but for now I treasure these tears as a reminder of how wonderful he was in life and how courageous he was in death. Chad, I miss you."
Abby Jones of Batesville, IN/USA

"At Arlington Today

At Arlington today,
A mother came to say,
Goodbye to her soldier-son
With flowers on his grave to lay
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
A father shed some tears.
For his son who made him proud
And who faced terror without fear
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
A little brother came.
To see the honor and respect
The Nation to his family gave
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
An oldest sister saw
What it means to sacrifice
And what freedom truly costs
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
A high school sweetheart cried
She saw the coffin and the flag
And knew that all her dreams had died
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
A soldier knelt to say.
The Country gives, with deep regret,
This flag which o’er your son did lay
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
Rifles fired shots, twenty-one,
For a fellow-soldier,
Brother, son,
At Arlington today.

At Arlington today,
A bugle softly played
The lonely, sad Taps melody
As a soldier’s body laid
At Arlington today.

© Ken B. Harper
23 April 2006

I wrote this after seeing photos on the internet of the funeral service for Chad. Please accept my condolences for the loss of your son."
Ken B. Harper of Russellville, AR

"Hey bro, not a day goes by that I don't think of you and that night. It's been a hard 3 1/2 years. I have so many thoughts that run through my head about that night. I know that everything happens for a reason but I just know that that night should have gone differently. If I just would have seen it or if we would have just gone back to the COB instead of on one more patrol. It's just not fair! I knew that night was going to be bad. And then why you? Why not somebody else? Why couldn't it have missed or just injured somebody? I wish I knew why this happened. I hope that one day I will find the answers I'm looking for. Like why did you take point for that last patrol. I was the lead truck that whole night until 2 minutes before the blast. That should have be me getting hit and not you. Why did you have to take lead? You had everything going for you. I had nothing until you were gone and your family took me in. Nobody would have missed me like they miss you. Why didn't I die that night instead of you Chad? WHY? I mean I'm glad that I made it back and that your sister has found someone to help her deal with her pain but I just can't help thinking that I'm the one that has caused her all this pain. It's hard to tell her everything happens for a reason when you don't know what that reason is. I need help dealing with this but I don't know where to go or if it's just something stupid going on in my head right now. I hope that I can find the answers and that you continue to look over your family and me. Till we meet again bro, AIRBORNE. ALL THE WAY. LET'S GO"
Joe of Noblesville, IN

"Hello All! I hope you are all well! Chad, I know you're reading this too and I miss you. I know you're watching over Scott, my bf in Iraq, and I appreciate it! You always were the one person I could count on! Save a spot in Heaven for me! I'll be seeing you around...."
Crystal Dickman of Athens, AL

"Chad was honored and remembered for the last two years at our junior high's Veterans' Day program. This past year, I wore one of the photos displayed above around my neck as my students also wore names and faces of the fallen. No matter what the pundits say about our military presence, especially in Iraq, I know that these brothers and sisters are there for the good of mankind, not just Iraqi citizens. Chad and the over 3000 others are heroes, but I doubt they'd be comfortable being called that. But we know they are heroes just the same. My condolences to all the loved ones who remain behind and face the future without these who sacrificed their lives.
I learned about Chad through the father of one of his friends, Jeff. God Bless America and the US Army."
Sandra DiGiovanni of Needville, Texas

"To Chad:
I'm not sure exactly what to say...but I do want you to know that you are my hero and Tony and I miss you more and more everyday. We still refer to you as Unlcle Chad and you will always be apart of our family. We love you Chad!"
Christa Lingen of Ramsey, MN

"Hey Chad. I can't believe it has been so long. I think about you everyday and on this veterans day I just wanted to pay my repects. Rest in peace old friend."
Justin of PA

"Chad,
I miss you so much. Saturday was the best day. Although I did not see you physically or get to hug your or anything. That hour and a half was one of the greatest hour and a halfs of my life. I know you heard everything Joe and I talked about with you. I am sorry that we couldn't stay longer. I can't wait to get back there and spend more time with you.

Thanks for sending Joe my way! He really is the best.

I love you Chad and I miss you so much!! You better be ready for your G.I Joes we will be bringing you.

We Love you and miss you!!
Love
your little sister and best buddy"
Nikki and Joe of Noblesville

"Well Chad,
Time has flown in your absence. Its hard to believe its going on three years no9w since you left. I made up my mind a few months ago and now Im headed in that direction. I'll be leaving here soon to go to K-9 school. The way the world is shaping up I'll probably be running an explosives dog. I want to make a difference so what happened to you doesnt happen to others. Watch over us my friend. We miss you and wish you were here."
SGT Jeff LeClair, 92nd MP CO of Smith Barracks, Baumholder, Germany

"I have been out of the Army a couple of years now and I never actually met SGT. Kieth. I joined up with his unit a couple of weeks after he was killed. I actually was the gunner on the same truck that he was gunner on. SGT Kieth's shoes were hard ones to fill. Everyone was still kind of shell shocked, understandably, about the whole situation. I felt really honored to ride in the same truck and shoot the same gun he shot. Everyone was always talking about SGT.Kieth so much I felt like I knew him well. I really wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you to SGT. Kieth's family. You guys sent us a bunch of stuff the Christmas following SGT. Kieth's accident over to Iraq. My parents are passed away and I didn't get very many care packages overseas. To date I have to say that was one of the best Christmas' I have ever had. I mean you guys really went out of your way to show us a good Christmas over there and I just wanted to say thank you again. You are always in my thoughts and prayers."
SPC Chad Childers of FT. Bragg,NC

"Hello, You may or may not remember me... I was a friend of Chad's in Highschool... I just want you all to know that there is not a day that goes by that I do not think of your son, brother and my friend and miss him. He was and still is a very dear friend to me. I hope very much that you all are doing well and know that I am thinking of you always."
Angie Dickman of Bloomington Indiana USA

"Well man it has been a long hard 2 and a half years. We all miss you a lot and I still have a hard time excepting that you are gone but i guess we all just have to. I ust want to pay my respects old frined. White Falcons forever"
Justin of FL

"Sometimes we as soldiers,
Follow orders and not common sense,
Yet even as the wind howls,
On the cold desert plains,
We wonder if back home,
Someone is thinking of us,
Never have I felt so lost,
Or more alone,
As I stand in the middle,
Of a memorial of stone,
Names are on blocks,
All around the museum,
I cant hold back the tears,
Some of the best friends I have had,
Their names are all around me,
And as the tears run down my face,
I see seven smiling faces,
For although here at Bragg the wind howls,
Its got rain that stings your face,
I remember that without your sacrifices,
I may not be here,
Still memories that seem real and I can feel,
What seems like sand scratching my face,
I remember falling off a truck,
And the laughter when I picked myself up,
There was nothing I could do,
I had to laugh at myself,
Then doing what all soldiers do,
I lit up a smoke,
Little did I know,
It was the last time I would see you Chad,
I want you to know, that every step in life I take,
You guide me,
You show me the paths of right and wrong,
You have become something,
That truly I don’t ever want to be,
You’re a hero.

SGT Jeffery L LeClair
CustomsMP@hotmail.com
“White Falcons, All the Way, Airborne! Let’s Go!"

"C-130’s spooling up as the soldier looks across the horizon,
Taking a last look at what has become home,
Business bustles at Fort Bragg,
But the soldier still has a grin on his face,
He boards the plane,
For though it seems like war is coming,
We follow orders and prepare,
For an adventure,
Or maybe to mete` out a little justice,
We have yet to decide,
17 long hours later the plane descends,
into a barren desert that we think of as no mans land,
the fear reigns but we push on,
knowing not what comes of tomorrow
sorrow as we push our way to Baghdad,
suffering our first losses
uppermost in our minds,
the day we lost a friend,
some call him a hero,
some call him other things,
but uppermost in my mind is that he was a friend,
and he gave his life for the freedoms that people of Iraq,
and the US take for granted everyday,
to my friend I say this,
your sacrifice will never be forgotten,
your name is memorialized in stone,
but memories of patrols in dusty and sandy streets,
the quietness of the nights where we wondered,
what exactly was next,
and the making of new friends,
keep watch and guide us,
we will forever be in your debt,

For SGT Chad L Keith
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends”
~WILFRED OWEN~
Chad you still live in the memories of the men of 1st platoon of Charlie Company. I know I speak for all of us when I say that we appreciate everything that you did. Your sacrifice has shown many of us that we must make the best of life, for those who cannot. To those who feel his loss the greatest; Chad was an infantryman who makes me proud to have been a part of the infantrymen who are known as the best in the world.
Thanks for everything,
SGT Jeffery L LeClair
560th Military Police Co
jeffery.l.leclair@us.army.mil
“though we leave this earth the White Falcons live forever”"

"hey chad! i miss ya! i miss you so much but i am lucky enough that through you i met joe, my best friend and now boyfriend...soon to be more. i love you chad. thanks for bringing such a good thing into my life. not a day goes by where i don't think of you an thank you for everything you have done for me as a brother and friend."
Nikki of noblesville IN

"Hey Chad its Justin. I think about you everyday that goes by and i just want to let you know that on memorial day the nation remembers you and your sacrifice. We will always be White Falcons and I will never forget you and all you did for me. Rest in Peace old freind"
Justin Marella of Coconut Creek FL

"Chad, your out there somewhere. Your watching over all of us with that big smile and goofy laugh of yours. I'm sorry I haven't talked to Chuck and Shirley for awhile. Hey I'll meet up with you someday and we can build something in that big sandbox in the sky."
Jon Pintea of Albion, PA

"I'd like to start out with a poem I wrote for one of my best and closest friends, Chad Keith. 'Chad, I miss you more and more as time passes by, but as I go through my day to day duties, I know and believe that you are here with me, through every step of the way' -Crystal Dickman- Its not that great, but I hope Chad appreciates it (and I know he will).

To the Family of Chad:
I'm sorry I haven't stayed in touch with you like I should have. I was going to call you, Courtney, the other night, but was afraid I might wake the little ones. I think about each one of you every day and pray that somehow you can find peace with it all. I haven't forgotten a single memory of my time with Chad, or with any of you, his family. For instance, chilling at his house with Nikki and Alex; Prom with showing off our 'Great looks' to Courtney, or sitting in the living room with his mom and dad. I miss you all so very much! I have an email and phone number that any of you are more than welcome to reach me at for any reason at any time! I would really appreciate the chance to stay in touch with all ya'll. If you can't tell by my words, I'm still in the south. Good Ole' Tennessee! I miss Indiana and everyone back home, but like Chad, I always wanted to see more of the world (well, at least the south). My prayers are with you all-family, friends, and fellow soldiers. May God Bless...
PS Here are my email addys and my phone number...Jassa17@yahoo.com; Jassa17@hotmail.com; 812-528-9159"
Crystal Dickman of Santa Fe, Tennessee,USA

"Its been about a year and a half now and it never gets easier i have to say. People still ask and i still have to tell. a day doesn't go by when i don't think about Chad. and even when i think i can't handle the tears anymore...something happens that reminds me of Chad and that he is still here with me. he always seems to be right there especially when i need him,like always. I miss chad so much, but like the other day, i was missing him and i started to cry and then one of chad and my favorite songs came on "when im gone" by 3 doors down. it was like he had that song played for me just to remind me. i love him so much. chad means everything to me and he has taught me so much! he told me things that only he and i would understand. i just remember all the crazy things he used to tell me and i remember the crazy things we used to do together. Chad you are the person i could never be!!! "with smile and memories you can make it through anything!"
if we raced today chad, who would win?? do you remember that?? I LOVE YOU CHAD!!!"
Nikki of Noblesville IN USA

"To the Hitzges and Creech's and Chad's family. Its hard to believe its been this long. Your son is still in my thoughts and prayers. As the unit deployed last month it was hard to see them go. I can only hope they return safely. Chad was the one guy you could count on to be upbeat and happy no matter how tired he was or how many patrols AT-3 got sent on. I know that myself and the rest of the guys from C Company owe AT-3 and Chad for watching our backs so well. We were stunned when we heard about Chad. It hit real close cause they worked with us so much. I wish all of you the best and I want you to know that Chad will never be forgotten. To my Airborne brother; God Speed and watch over our brothers who have once again ventured into Harm's Way. I know you're up there and keeping them safe. I'll see ya when I see ya Chad"
SPC (P) Jeffery L LeClair of 82nd MP Company Frt Bragg NC

"Hello Jason Royalty here again my email address is jrtransport@aol.com I have a gift I would like to send you the Keith family only if you want it ok."
Jason Royalty of Eastview, Kentucky United States

"Hello my name is Jason Royalty and I am from Eastview, Kentucky which is around 30 miles from Fort Knox, Kentucky. I am very sorry for the Death of Chad Keith your loved one. He was a great American Hero! I didn't get to know him but I know he is a hero! Because he served our country and died for it! He was a whole lot better person than what I am! I really do want to serve our country but I guess I am to big of a chicken. I first heard of Chad Keith in the July 21,2003 issue of Time magizine. The article was called 7 days 7 deaths. It was about seven soldiers that died one each of the first seven days of July. Chad was the last one the one whom died on July 7,2003. I don't know why but when I read about Chad it touched me some how and I remebered I cried. I don't know really why. Maybe its because in a way we were some what a like. I am 24 years old and I love Amercia and people say I am very partotic. I also have a little neice around the same age that I love very much. Another thing is I really do want to serve my country, just I haven't found the courage and the will to. Which I know that isn't a excuse and I should serve anyway. Last I have a very high interest in government ever since I was little kid I have always wanted to be President of The United States. I have even sit down sometimes when growing up and wrote down my cabniet appointments. And the best trip I have ever been on was when I was in eigth grade I went to Washington D.C.. I loved it and if I ever make it back to Arlington National Cem. I want to visit my hero's grave. The grave of Sgt. Chad Keith! But these are the things I feel we had in common together and I really wished I could have met him I think we would have been good friends. I keep that magizine down on the floor beside my bed under my bible. I have two christmas tree in my room this year one is the one I got my grandfather the last christmas he was alive its talks and sings. And the other is a little fiber obtic tree I got red white and blue on in honor of those who are serving our country and the ones who have died for our country. I wish there was something I could do to ease your pain. I really would have like to see in a future Presidential Election a Keith/Royalty ticket. I don't know what party he was but I am a Republican.One of my favorite verses in the bible is Ecclesiastes Chapter 7 verse 1 " A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day do death than the day of one's birth." I know Chad had to have a good name, the day of his death was the day of his birth in a enteral life in heaven. I know its hurts and never seem to get better but Chad is in no more pain no more danger, and there is no sadness there. There is just happiness day peace and joy. And in a way he is still with you and will always be he now lives within your heart. This might not seem fair but it is a part of Gods plan and will. And if we follow God throught out life we will meet our loved ones again. I am sorry if I have hurt you with any of this or offended you with any of it. Which I hope you see this I am going to leave my email address I would like to send something to you in memory of Chad. That is only if you want to. Well I know Christmas is very hard for you but some how I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. The Lord will comfort you and lead you. If there is anything I can ever do for you all (keith Family) please email me and let me know ok. I mean it! I hope I get the same courage and strength that Chad had. I thank Chad for his service and his family for their strength and pray for him daily. He was a great American Hero, My hero! I am going to leave a poem some one got me when my grandfather died.
To My Loved Ones
To my loved ones and friends to those I loved and those who loved me, when I am gone- release me let me go. I have so many things to see and do, You must not tie yourselves to me in tears, be happy that we had this time, I gave you my love, you can only guess how much you gave me in happiness, I thank you for that love you each have shown me, but it is time I traveled on alone. So grieve a short while for me, if grieve you must. Then let your grief be comforted by trust. Its only for a little while that we must part, so bless the memories within your hearts, and know that I won't be very far away, so just remember- Life does go on and if you need me- Call and I will come, though you can't see or touch me-I'll be there and near! And if you listen with your heart, You'll hear all my love around you soft and clear, and when you must come this way alone- I'll greet you with a smileand Say-- Welcome Home!"
Jason Royalty of Eastview, Kentucky United States

"Wow. This is somthing eles. Chad was a great guy to alot of people and so many people love and care about him. Chad and James were joined at the hip when I met them so long ago at Ft. Bragg. I was only a senior in high school then and James and Chad quickly became two of my best friends. After James and I got married Chad bugged us relentlessly for a child. He wanted to have kids of his own one day and we all knew that he would be a great dad. Chad wanted to be our childs god-father and he taked about his niece and nefew constantly. I remember the moment we got to the barracks the first thing Chad did was pull out his stack of photo albums and show me pictures of his family. He loves his family more than anything. When we got word that the guys would get deployed James and I had a long talk about everything. He told me that not everyone would be comming back. We never thought in a million years that it would be Chad who would be the one not to come home. My heart aches everyday for Chads family. Mom and Dad Nikki ALex Courtny I love you all so much and I want to thank you for letting me become a part of your lives. Chad will never be forgoten. I love you all."
Lauren Christen of Ft. Irwin Ca

"To Chad's family: I have been trying to somehow get in touch with you but just don't know the appropriate way to. I'm just going to tell my story and pray you contact me to see if what I have is yours. My husband is in the Marine Corps and was stationed at Cherry Point, NC. One day in the summer of 2003, we were at Onslow Beach which is in Jacksonville, NC. My son Ryan found a set of dogtags in the sand. The name on them is Chad L. Keith. A few days later I googled the name and learned that your beloved son was killed in Iraq. They don't say which branch of service but the social security number is on them. We have tried in vain to find out if they belong to your Chad. I tried to get a phone number for your family or an email address but was unsuccessful. We are now stationed in Singapore where my husband is the Detachment Commander at the US Embassy. I have thought about Chad and your family for a long time and have read all about him on this site. I don't know if these are Chad's but I need to find out because if they are, they need to be with you, where they belong. Please email me with any questions you may have.
Sincerely,
Holly Faragone

hollyfaragone@yahoo.com"
Holly Faragone of Singapore

"As Chad's 23rd birthday passes and the holidays come, I just want to say that it doesn't get any easier. It's been a long and hard 16 months since he died. Someone once told me that for every really bad thing that happens, something really good happens. I wish that he was still here but I have grown really close with his family. Nikki is like a little sister to me and my best friend. I cried on the phone with her last night and I just wish that I could do something to make up for his families loss. I miss you Chad! Thank you for all the good times and the knowledge that you have passed on to me. I know that you will never be forgotten. You have touched so many lives in the few years you graced our presence. Keep your feet and knees together and have a good jump. Airborne, All the Way, Let's Go. Brothers forever!"
sgt joe glutz of ft bragg, nc

""Chad oh the memories...he was so dedicated and committed to his family, friends, military and every other aspect of his life. Although it was cut so short he lived true to himself and lived everyday as he should have. He was the one person I confided in for advice, a laugh, a hug and most of all his presence in my life. I'm so honored and happy to know that I had the chance of a lifetime to get to spend countless days getting to know him as my "one" true friend that I could always count on. He had a great family that supported his desires and they trully loved him for all his worth. Chad I will remember our days of playing on playgrounds after our day was through in high school, and the many phone calls while you were away in the army just to catch up on all the missed events, and just to here you say "you are special!" Love always!"
Michelle Cullen of Batesville, IN,USA"

"I wish to express my sincere condolences to the family of Sargeant Chad L. Keith. So many people have posted their memories of him here that I feel I almost know him. He will most assuredly live in the hearts of those he loved and who loved him in return. He rests in the bivouac of the blessed. I am praying for you and I hope you know how much I appreciate the job Chad was doing for his country. On behalf of my own family, the Keiths of Lakeland, FL I pray that Our Loving Heavenly Father will pour out His Holy Spirit of Comfort upon you and give you peace. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen."
Rev. Joel B. Keith of Lakeland, FL

"I met Chad a few years back through my cousin,Michelle, over time Chad became a true friend to me, he truly would give the shirt off his back to help anyone. He was true to his word, smart, and an all around funny guy. I was always excited when I heard Chad was home, and I always knew he would show up knocking, usually with James in tow. I would call in to work somehow knowing the adventures they had planned would make me unavailable. I spent a week in North Carolina with Chad and some of his friends, the memories I brought back with me are priceless, even more so now. I had a terrible fear of heights, so one day while visiting a local hang out place for them which was a huge lake with massive cliffs, Chad explained to me it was "so much fun", to jump from the cliffs into the water. I replied.."..." well I can't write what I replied but a couple of hours later my buddy talked me up that cliff and jumped with me, I have never been afraid of heights since, which proves to me that friendship prevails.
Chad I will never forget the long talks, even longer laughs, the friendship and brotherhood of you, James, and Keith. I miss you everyday and
I thank you for everything you taught me, because of you I am no longer afraid to jump."
Mandy of Indianapolis,IN

"As Chad's birthday was coming up, and I hadn't talked with him in ages I decided to look him up on the internet. My heart is filled with great sadness over his death. I am proud to have known such a dedicated American and joyful spirit. I will always remember Chad as "my bestest friend in the whole wide world." I will be sure to keep his family in my prayers."
Amanda Golden of Columbus, Ohio

"I graduated with Chad in 2000 from Batesville High School. Chad and I had a lot of classes together. He would write me notes that had lines from movies in them when I was feeling down, and I found one the other day. I just wanted to say that he was a great guy and a great friend. Thanks Chad."
Lynda Mitchell (Adams) of Milan, Indiana

"This old paratrooper will never forget the brotherhood of the greatest division in the world. Although I never ran across Keith, my heart still hurts for my brother. May you rest in peace."
Anthony of Denver, CO

"My name is Seth Shields. I went to school with Chad, but only knew him from passing through the halls. I was on ground in Northern Iraq with the 173rd Airborne when I learned of Chad's death. I had just lost two friends in April (Tikrit) and in June, Chad. Even though I didn't know Chad very well, he will always have a place in my heart. To Chad's family, thank you for the sacrifice you all have made, I will forever be in debt to you."
Seth Shields of Sembach, Germany

"It doesn't seem like it has been a whole year since I lost the only big brother I have ever known. It never did get any easier as the year passed and time went on. At Christmas time we went to visit my granparents and we had Christmas there. We got back from AZ we celebrated Christmas with my sister her husband and my nieces and nephew on New Years Day. It was different but it made the holiday a little more enjoyable, because Christmas was Chads favorite holiday. It's times like that when I just can't believe it. I still can't bring myself to listen to someone when they are saying how he was killed. The only way I can try to listen is when I ask someone like Joe or James what it was like. But thats a different story.
During this summer we recently moved to Noblesville Indiana because our Dad works up here. It is really nice here, the people are so much friendlier, and the school seems so much better. I just wish that Chad COULD BE HERE to share the buying our house and moving in and decorating our rooms and everything, but he's not he's chilling with God as one of Chad's friend Crystal put it as his funeral last year. In the past year I have made a great friendship with one of Chad's friends/fellow paratrooper, Joe Glutz. Joe is one of my best friends and I love him like nothing else. He is such a great guy. Another one of Chads friends that I have known for several years, James Christen is like another brother to me. When Chad came home on leave James would come too. But I am sad to say that I don't see James as much as I see Joe.
The only thing I want is to see Chad as much as I see Joe and James. Since the beginning of the summer we have had to go to many many ceremonies honoring fallen soldiers and that really really hurts. And even songs like that National Anthem make me cry, along with Amazing Grace. The one song that truly gets me is "The Last Full Measure of Devotion" I mean that song says a lot. It's right there in the title. There is now a hole in my heart from the place that only Chad could fill with joy, happiness. And Chad being my only big brother I ever had, ever will, the person I knew my whole life is now gone. You wouldn't believe what some people have said to me that past year that have hurt bad that they made me cry in school. They would say things like Chad wasn't a good soldier, anyone that dies over there is a bad person/soldier. And things like that, those things made me cry. It doesn't feel like a year has passed by and gone on. I still keep waiting for a phone call, a letter, or Chad to just come to the door and stay for a while before he has to go back to work. I miss my big brother dearly and I want to see him again. One of my friends once told me after I said I would never see him again, she told me I would it just wouldn't be in the next few years, but I would so I shouldn't worry. Those words and everything about the moment has stuck with me since August of Last year during Cross Country season. I miss him so much that some days I can't stand how much I miss him and I cry, holding one of his sweatshirts. I hope that every single American knows what all the soldiers over there are dying for. It's not just the Iraqi peoples freedom but for our own. If it wasn't for the American Soldier we would not have the freedom that we have today. And everyone needs to remember the soldiers over there are someones brother/sister/son/daughter/you name it. People tell me Chad is a hero, he may be a hero, I know he is a hero but all I want is my big brother back! I dont think anyone understands that more than my little brother and my big sister. We all want Chad back. I wish that Chad could have seen Courtney's newest baby, she was born in May before Chad was killed. That little girl will never get to see her Uncle Chad, he was one of the best uncles those kids could have. I miss you Chad!! You will always be remembered by me. You were the best big brother a girl could have and I wish I could still have you here to be here for me. I Love You CHAD!!"
Nikki of Noblesville, IN 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.
At the beginning of the year and when it ends, 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

"Chad,

I never knew you, and you never knew me. But still, a year after your death, it hurts me to know that you were taken before your time. I still think about you. What you could have been, and what you already were. I wish you could be there for Christmas with your family, and I wish that you could have known the feeling of holding a baby puppy, three days after it was born.

But its alright, You have single handedly given me the strength to be proud of myself, to love who I am, and to appriciate the finer things in life. A babys first smile, the dewy grass in the cool mornings.

You have made me who I am, and ever since I first posted on here, I have done what I said I would, I have tried to live my life for you, to try to do the things you never got a chance to do.

So Chad, I just wanted you to know, You wanted to help our country, make the States better. Now, I live in California, I am a piece of America, and you have made me better. You saved me from myself, and for that I could never thank you enough.

We love you, and miss you. Maybe some day, I'll meet you on the otherside. But until then, Thank you.

Forever in your debt,

Claire"
Claire Hulstrom of Seaside/Perris, Ca

"I didn't know you, but i prayed for you and all the soilders in Iraq. Now i pray for your family and i know you will be deeply missed . God has plans for hero's like Chad l. Keith. He fought for others to be free, and his country, and most of all for himself"
maria of wACO tX

"I go to Barker school. We are studying soldiers in
Iraq and I learned how Chad died. I know that there is a lot of people that will miss him because I read it in the fallen soldiers website. He was vary brave to join the service. My dad said if I ever do something like
that he would really be sad because a lot of soldiers have died. Your son was in a bad place
and it's too bad things like this happen."
chris harper of 1716Quaker road

"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. Your HERO, Chad, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

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

"i came to know chad when i first came to the unit. from day one chad was always there to be a freind and help you with whatever it was that u needed. he always knew how to make you smile whether it was a story about a wild night or just a funny joke. chad was such a great guy somebody i will never forget. i will never forget the night chad was taken from us. my heart goes out to his family because i know they loved him very much. all i can do as a fellow soldier is make sure chad didnt die in vane. we miss you man i will never forget you."
Spc. Justin Marella of Ft. Bragg NC

"Oh the tragedy. I have just recently found out that this good friend of mine is a fallen solider.... Chad you were so loved!!!! May God Bless Your Family."
Coley

"Chad's sister Courtney is married to my brother Ron. Courtney is also my best friend I am proud to say. Losing Chad put everything in my life into perspective. I realized that there were things in my life that I was neglecting. My family and especially my own relationship with my brother. I have not been this close to him since we were in grade school. And it is because of Chad.
Hanging out with Chad always ment a good time. He was always upbeat and happy. Just being around him put me in a good mood. He was proud of what he was doing in the Army and was more than happy to tell you what he did. I went to his funeral and had the chance to meet his family. I got to see how his life touched so many others. I didn't realize how one person can effect so many people just with his love and personallity. All you have to do is ask my niece Tasia about her Uncle Chad to see how he touched the hearts of everyone around him.
I just wish that I could have half the charactor that Chad had. Kim, Mark, Nikki, Alex, and Courtney... I love you all and want you to know that I think about you guys all of the time.
I know that Chad also has some really great friends out there. James is one that I got to meet via letters and a phone call. I just want all of Chad's friends to know that I appreciate the fact that none of you have forgotten Chad's family. The loss of Chad brought together a new family. One of relatives, distant in-laws and friends. Only a guy like Chad can bring together people from around the world to become this one big happy extended family that would do anything for each other.
I think about Chad everyday and always will. He is my inspiration to become a better person."
Cyndy Creech of Charleston, S.C.

"Chad was my best friend and fellow paratrooper. He was an incredible friend and colleague. There was nothing that he wouldn't do for you. Chad will always be missed and remembered. i will never forget the night that his life was taken by cowards. i truly wish that i could trade places with him so that he would be able to come home to his loved ones. Mom, Dad, Courtney, Nikki, and Alex, i'm sorry that i couldn't bring your son and brother home. i would do anything to change that night. please let me know if there is anything that i can do for you."
Sgt Joe Glutz of Ft. Bragg, NC

"to chad's family,mrs. hitzges,alex and nikki: I came to know your son in Baghdad when AT-3 was assigned to C Co. I can remember pulling guard,sharing cigarettes and stories of home with him while pulling guard at the entrance to Outpost Charlie as its now called. I was detached to a security detail at BIAP for 48 hrs and heard about chads death when our relief came. At first I thought it was a cruel joke but then reality set in. I couldn't hold back the tears. A guy that i had become friends with and talked to only hours before was killed by cowards. Today i still feel guilty of the fact that I returned home and he didn't. To this day I would rather be in his place than see your suffering. I only hope that others in this nation understand the sacrifice that you and so many others have had to endure. I miss ya chad
"SUPER 3-1" AIRBORNE,ALL THE WAY,
LETS GO!"
LeClair,Jeffery L. SPC of Fort Bragg, NC

"I was in Young Life with chad Keith. He was an awsome guy that eveybody loved. He would do anything for you when you was down he knew how to make you happy he could always make you smile. I miss him alot love and friends forever"
of Milan, Indiana

"To the family of Sgt. Chad L. Keith:

Words cannot express my personal gratitude to Chad for being a true hero.

No amount of explanation can convey this nation's thankfulness to Sgt. Keith for what he did.

However, I am willing to try to express just that...in a work I would like to write about Chad.

No, I did not know him personally, but I am sincerely hoping that you will allow the world to get as close to Chad as possible through my writing.

Please let me know as soon as possible if you are interested in this by emailing me @ aaronwpnow@hotmail.com.

Thank you very much!

God Bless America!"
Aaron W. Perkins of Cincinnati, OH

"Thank you Chad Keith, 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

"No one ever thinks when they wake in the morning that this will be the day my life will take a change for the worst. No one ever thinks when they lie in bed at night that some one else's life will be forever changed the next morning. There is no way of knowing what will happen and there is no way of changing what has happened already. My brother leaves for iraq in 2 weeks. I pray i never have wake up and realize the worst. I pray for you and your family. I finally realized that my fears and my thoughts and my heart aches arent just my own, they are the same as every other little sister, mother, father, brother, ect. of every other soilder over there. Life may not be fair but it is all we have. I will keep you in my prayers and I hope you know I am deeply sorry for your pain and your loss."
laura sullivan of alabama

"I'm Chad's cousin, and like Nikki and Alex I too feel that Chad's death was premature and unfair. I look at some people who are disrespectful and think that the world would be better off with out them and with Chad still here. I can't listen to the song when I'm gone by 3 doors down without crying, that was the song played at his funeral. Yeah he died for a good cause, but why? Why a good guy? Why a guy that so many people looked up to? Why a guy who had goals set and though they seemed big to some people but he had the potential and the ambition to become anyone he wanted. My best friend told me I needed to get over the fact that he was dead, but I can't. You just don't forget someone like Chad and you miss him everyday. Chad and all the other soilders in Iraq along with anyone else in the armed forces are doing something great and they deserve everyone's love and support."
Ashley of Pennsylvania

"I'm Alex Chad's younger brother.I miss my brother. He was the only one I had. I have to agree with my sister Nikki. They say only time can ease your pain but it really doesn't. Especially at this age, I have a long way to go through life and It will be harder without someone you truly love. I wanted to go to the army with him, but that won't happen. and to make things worse he was so young. that is unfair. I looked up to Chad. I wanted to be just like him. I want to a good as a brother to my sisters as Chad but I can't really give that to them like Chad did. I prayed for God to watch over Chad and his buddies, James, Joe and many many more soldiers. I prayed for all the soldiers but more for Chad. Everyone of my friends knew I loved him. Everyone who I talked to about him that he was the greatest. My sisters loved him. Nikki will never have a bigger brother again. I want to her big brother but i can't. Not like Chad. I'm more sad for everyone else. Especially My oldest sister Courtney. They grew up together. He was Mom's first born son. I miss Chad dearly. I can't believe I lost him. I never thought I would go to his funeral. That thought never crossed my mind............but I had to.That was hard. He was so close to coming home. I wish he would just walk through our door and say surprise! But that won't happen. It is a very hard time right now. Sure people offer support but doesn't me at all. I just want my brother back."
Alex Hitzges of Batesville,IN USA

"Im Chads little sister and this is so unfair no matter how I look at it. I know he's a hero, but I just want my big brother back. I sometimes wake up and find myself saying I can't wait til Chad comes home. THen I just break down and cry. I dont think that the realization of my big brother is gone. I hope that someday I will see him again but thats another story. I know hes in a better place but it just doesnt seem like that. Everyone says dont worry its okay he is a hero and he is in a better place, but all i want is my big brother. I just want to give him a hug and say I love you Chad!! I can still say that but its just not the same. How can anyone say that only time will heal your wounds...when sometimes time only makes it worse. You know you'll never get to spend Christmas with them, or get a birthday card from them, or have Thanksgiving or just even hang out with them. Whenever Chad came home on leave and he spent time with me I always was like I feel special no one else is hanging with the coolest big brother in the world. That was special and now I cant do that. I miss him a lot and nothing can change that. I just want to see him one last time!!"
Nikki, Chads Little Sister of Batesville IN

"Chad was my nephew, he was always very, very special to me. No matter what his sister Courtney wanted to play when they were young he played right along with her, just to make her happy. They had a bond between them that they could only explain. Chad truley loved all his familey,He was one of kind, he was a very sweet,kind hearted,loving and caring person. It's so very sad that his life was cut so short. He died doing what he truley belived in. I was overwhelmed and In awe by the service at Arlington Cemetary. I never saw anyone so respected and honored before. Seeing the sadness and greif in Chads mom (my sister's)eyes was more then I could handle. Chads death totaly devestated me, and is something I will never get over. Everything in life seems to remind me of him. He definatley was an angel in my eyes.
Chad I will love you forever. Love Aunt Lissa"
Melissa Pifer of Union City, PA

"Chad was the best man I have ever meet, he is the type of guy who would take the shirt of his back for anyone. I am honored to be able to say that I knew him very well and that EVERYONE here in Batesville loves him and will never forget the way he has touched many of our hearts...."
Crystal Meister of Batesville, IN/USA

"To Chad's family:
We saw your pictures in the LA Times this morning. Our hearts go out to you. We join you in honoring your fallen hero. God Bless You."
The Pepper Family of Calabasas, CA

"I had just returned from a friends house and was in a relativly good mood. I picked up the TIME magazine that was sitting on my mothers bed and started flipping thorugh it. When I reached the section on the fallen soldiers I felt my heart drop a little. I was growing impatient with this "Operation Iraqi freedom" As I read through the obituaries of the fallen soldiers I becoame more and more somber. Then I read Chad's. Aslmost automaticly I felt a lump rise in my throat. I reached the part where it said how his neice called him captain America,, and I felt as though someone had slugged me in the stomach. I didnt know this guy, why did it feel this way? I looked at the picture of his smiling face and at once I started sobbing. I was bitter about this war from the start, yet I had always supported our troops, I had no choice but to. Those were our friends and loved ones out their fighting for someones freedom. Some thing I could never have the guts to do. Somehow this one soldier had single handedly made me cry, and made me want to live for him, becuase he had had that right taken away from him. I went around for the rest of the week, doing my normal routine. Bruhing my teeth in the morning, cooking dinner at night. All the while a little voice inside my head kept saying, Chad cant do this anymore, he cant eat cereal, he cant watch TV, and he cant ever enjoy the cool summers evenings again.
He was so courageous, everything that I read about him, his dream of becoming president, his times playing with children in toy store isles, him being so enthusiastic about serving his country, everything made me wish that I had had the chance to meet him, to enjoy being around him.
I dont know why exactly his death has struck me so hard. But I know now what makes a hero. Its a good person who was willing to do what it took to make you happy, be strong when someone isnt, and be brave in the face of danger. All of that is Chad.
Now a little piece of me is empty, never to be full again. He was so young, and so brave. It still boggles my mind to think that someone my age could have his plan in life set out for him. Maybe thats why I've given him a star.
There are five stars Tattooed to my back, one is for family, one is for friends, and the third is for Chad, my hero. All of these things have made me stronger, and helped me grow up. I'm only 19, but now, I dont feel as scared and unsure as I had recently, I know that I can do anything I want, becuase Chad knew he could too. I pray for him and his family everynight, hoping that they are okay, and that he is a new recruit in Gods army. I guess that one day we will see if he is, but until then he will always have my star."
Claire of Perris/Seaside, CA

"My name is Elisha Pahnke, wife of fallen soldier PFC Shawn Pahnke. You are in my thoughts and prayers. If you want to talk to someone who "knows" feel free to e-mail me.
depahnke@lightbound.com"
Elisha of Shelbyville, IN

"To the family and friends of Spc. Chad Keith:
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 Chad 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. Chad Keith:
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 Chad, 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