Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Spc. Manuel Lopez III

20, of Cape Coral, Florida.
Lopez died in Baghdad, Iraq, when his HMMWV was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade. He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia. Died on April 12, 2005.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Army Spc. Manuel Lopez III.

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Contributions to the Families of the Fallen

Messages:

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

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"Love you cousin I will love you for ever and pray to God for your soul to keep and until the end! RIP"
Zilma of MA

"Happy birthday! Miss your face"
Jacqueline Turselli (Longueira)

"Today I am running a 5k in your memory and honor. Thank you for your service Spc Lopez."
Louise Vallone of Fl USA

"Manuel,
I never meet you. Just want to thank you for your service for your country and my family"
David of Melvindale,MI

"wish it was me instead of you."

"Im sitting at my desk at work and thinking about how much even 7 years later I miss you. I pray you are resting in paradise and that you continue to watch over your friends and family who continue to miss you daily. Your are missed more then I can express. I love you."
Cierra Winter of Norfolk, VA

"Love you manny and can't stop thinking about you lately!!! miss you xoxo muah"

"Manny, I'm thinking of you today...and frequently. You were a bright light on this planet...I am enriched by having known you. RIP, Manny"
Kathy Wiz of Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, USA

"Gone but never forgotten...I served with you in 3-7support platoon, i will never forget buddy eventhough we didnt know each other very well"
SPC BILL WOOD of Grand Rapids, Mi.

"As we celebrate Memorial Day today with cook outs and parties, I will be remembering you and your sacrafice for our freedom. Thank you Manny."

"To the family of:Manuel Lopez lll
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""

"Happy 27th Birthday Manny. Miss you."

"Oh my goodness!! i didnt know...R.I.P man!!!!"

"Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!!!! this is ana amezola!!!!! muahahahahaha!!!!!!! Lolzz....you r so d.ope...."
ana of wa

"Hi! I just need to know more about you for a school project..................."
blah of wa

"Happy Birthday Manny."

"Happy Birthday Manny love you.... you are always in our hearts xoxox"
aunt Z

"LOVE YOU MANNY "GONE BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN YOU ARE ALWAYS IN MY PRAYER AND IN MY HEART".<3"
AUNT Z

"Manny has a short mention in John McManus's new book, Grunt: Inside the American Infantry Combat Experience, World War II Through Iraq.

http://johncmcmanus.com/

Last chapter described 3/7 and 2/7's time in Iraq during '05."
Matt Sickmeier, D co 3/7 INF '04-'07 of Savannah, GA

"I never want to forget the sacrifices of so many young men and women. I am so proud it makes me cry at times. I understand, in theory only, that war is a part of human nature but so is love and caring. I wish I could take your families and friends pain away but I can't. I am committed to loving ALL people, myself and our environment. I am committed to working on my happiness everyday because so many have died for my freedom to live my life. Thank you is not enough but it is all I have. All my love and respect. ogersteiner@yahoo.com
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dEjz-wAQLSA&feature=PlayList&p=477CB1585D5551F3
A hundred times a day, I remind myself that my inner and outer life depends on the labors of other men, living and dead, and I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am receiving. - Albert Einstein"
Scott E. Steiner of Worthington, OH USA

"It was an honor to have served with you and to have been your friend."
SGT Escott, Adam J. of CP Humphreys, ROK

"HAPPY BIRTHDAY MANNY!!!!LOVE YOU.. ALWAYS IN MY HEART."
zoraida

"Happy Birthday Manny <3 Always thinking of you and your beautiful smile... :)"
Jacqueline Longueira of New York

"Yo whats good manny its been a long time since ive talked to you but i just wanted to let you know that you always live on in my heart bro and i will never forget you...."
George Rodriguez of Haverstraw ,NY

"”Honor and Remember” - “Project Compassion” We love our Soldiers! We love our country and we cannot express enough love and compassion to the families of our fallen heroes. War does not discriminate – It breaks our hearts to see the faces of the fallen. We want to give this gift to you. We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization! Over 1,600 portraits have been completed and shipped to the parents and or spouse - at no cost as this is a gift from one American to another!
Contact us directly at Projectcompassion@manti.com or go to www.heropaintings.com . If you have already had a portrait completed, we pray that you are enjoying the portrait and God Bless You.
Sincerely and Respectfully,
Kenna"
Kenna - Project Compassion of Manti, Utah

"Thank You Manny for your sacrafice, thinking of you on this memorial day and everyday, r.i.p, love you , miss you."
aunt zoraida

"So manny it has been four years since u have left us...wow how time flies. This only feels like yesterday that it has happened. all tho, it will never seen real. I miss you soo much. even words could not explain how much i miss and love you. but were always thinking of you, there is not a day that passes with out me thinking of you for even just a second. No other cousin could ever take the title of MY FAVORITE COUSIN. LOVE YOU!"
Adrianna Accattato of west haverstraw

"April 15, 2009
To the family of Spc. Manuel Lopez, III:
Manuel 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

"Manny Im thinking so much about things. I wont ever forget who you were and are. I want to drive to Harvestraw but I am scared to. I miss you and I hope your family is well."
Phil Gaudette of Albany Ny

"Manny miss you so much, but we always hold your memories in our hearts.We always pray for all the men and women in the war and home and their fam. We always think and pray for Phil of albany may god bless you.May everyone have a Happy Easter with their fam and friends. miss and love you manny."
aunt zoraida

"Manny, I met your mom last night. I never knew you or your mom. She was at a party and I started talking to her. She is hurting so much but smiles and laughs when she talks about you. She is a special person and will never let your friends forget about you. Thank you for your service to this great country.Feb 2009"
DH of Stony Point, NY

"thought of you today.. we're planning a high school reunion class of 02'.. and we wished you were still with us to be able to enjoy that special day.. and recall all those great high school moments.. even in mr. dominick's class..lol you gave him a run for his money.. good times... i love you and miss you.. and i will always keep you in my heart"
Lucindy Garcia of Haverstraw, Ny

"As I am sitting here thinking of you and all the times we have shared.. It brings so much pain yet so much joy to my heart. I love you!"
Asia of Miami, FL

"Merry Christmas Manny, We were laughing and crying today at the dinner table GiGi remembered when you sleeped over one cristmas and I was suppose to wrap your gifts and you dad throw your gloves in the bag and I wrapped your gloves and that morning you say "hay I have the same gloves already" We were laughing and crying remembering all the fun and silly times we all had together. LOVE YOU MERRY CHRISTMAS"
aunt Zoraida

"we celebrated your birthday with family and friend on corporal manny lopez way. Manny we love you, always thinking of you. HAPPY BIRTHDAY"

"HAPPY 24 BIRTHDAY! Everyone that loves you was to celebrate the renaming of your street."
AUNT ZORAIDA

"Hey, Manny. Happy Birthday!! Always thinking of you..."
Karen Madar Kotel of West Nyack, NY

"Happy Birthday Manny! I love you and miss you so much!"
Asia of Miami, FL

"Guess what manny... we're going to honor you.. On sept 28th 2008 your old street "ochard street" will be renamed in your honor.. it will be renamed cpl.manny lopez.. that way everyone who ever drives by that street will forever remember you and if they didnt know you they will find out about you . we love you and we miss you ! one day we will see you again.

love always
lucindy"
lucindy garcia of haverstraw, ny

"Guess what manny... we're going to honor you.. On sept 28th 2008 your old street "union street" will be renamed in your honor.. it will be renamed cpl.manny lopez.. that way everyone who ever drives by that street will forever remember you and if they didnt know you they will find out about you . we love you and we miss you ! one day we will see you again.

love always
lucindy"
lucindy garcia of haverstraw, ny

"ps...i graduated and i can still remember the day the whole family was there to see you graduate and i remember how proud i was of you..i can only hope your that proud of me..oh and manny i have been putting my voice to good use like u always wanted me to im in a play and i have been singing my hardest i wish you could see..but deep down i know u are! I LOVE U BIG BRO and NOTHING can change that!!!"
Gianna of West Haverstraw, NY

"manny i was just thinking about you and i just wanted to say i love you and i miss you so much not a day goes by that i dont think of you...i am so lucky to have had the chance to grow up with you not as cousins but as brother and sister and you always steered me in the right direction, people didn't know us as cousins but as siblings and i miss all the times we shared...I LOVE YOU!!!"
your sister now, always, and forever Gianna (Gigi) of West Haverstraw, NY

"Happy 4th Manny because of your sacrifice we have independance. Your a hero in my eyes and I got a tattoo of praying hands with your dogtags on my back. I still cant cope with this kid I cant forget that day. I wish it was me instead of you."
Phil of Albany NY

"Hi Manny. They announced your name at the Red White and Boom festival in Cape Coral tonight. Miss you."
Bobbi of Cape Coral

"hey manny:: happy 4th of july! I wish you were here to see the fireworks with all of us...figures when I finally move down to Florida to live with the family I should have came down when you were here...I miss you more and more each day. but i kno ill see you soon in heaven. miss you and love you manny :)"
your sister forever, Gina of Cape Coral FL/Haverstraw, NY

"Manny (Hey you Guys!!!!! )
Chris and I can't believe its been 3 years! We miss you and remember all the good times we had with you and Kira. We will always treasure those times. Belle still talks about you! She calls you Jungle Gym because you told her that you were her jungle gym, and she has never forgotten it! We love you and want you to know that we are so proud for what you did not only for our country but for our world...the world at large and our personal world. We love you and we will never forget all the good times, and wonderful memories.
Oh p.s. we had a baby! Dec 15 2007 we gave birth to little Christopher! I guess one Chris Roessner in the world just wasnt enough! HA HA! Harley and Belle love him to peices."
Morgan and Chris of Cape Coral Fl

"Its been 3 years since the day we last talked. I remember eating ice cream that the little Iraqi boy went to get us for a dollar but we had to give him a extra dollar to do it for us. It was hot as hell that day so I cranked the AC on the humv. It really didnt matter though. A little after 1400hrs we lost you. Its been so hard since that day I dream of it over and over. Even though you were 20 I thought of you as a man and looked up to you for some advice because of how smart you are. Manny you are never going to be forgotten. I think of you often and remember our talk that day. I stuck to it. Miss you and still to this day think of you. Your a true hero. 12APRIL05 a day never forgotten."
Phil G of Albany, NY

"I bought a box of oreo's for you today :)im leaving one on your grave for you to eat with me later on. I knew you love them. I still cant believe its been 3 years..I miss you so much EVERYDAY..you would be proud of how much I've Actually grown up?! haha I have my own house & boyfriend & i'm very happy...but i wish you were here to see it..Even tho i know your looking down smiling on how good im doing...You were the best Brother i could have asked for..I still look after your little girl & Always will for you...shes growing up so beautifully & looks just like you..so i feel i get to see you all the time...she's so Smart you would be so proud & i will continue to look after her for the rest of my life...Cant wait until I get to see you again. One Day :)

LOVE & MISS YOU SO MUCH MANNY.

Love your Sister Forever."
Your Sister-Gina Castillo of Haverstraw, NY

"It has been three years and it feels like it happened yesterday. I'll never forget the times we shared. Your memory will live on in my heart forever! Love you!"
Asia of Miami, FL

"Thinking of you today Manny. Thanks for watching from above."
Bobbi

"Remember you always..."
Karen of Garnerville, NY

"I will never forget that day Chico. One day we will finish our conversation. There is not a day that dont go by I dont think of you and some of the jokes we pulled at JRTC and base. We made the agreement that we were leaving together and 3 of us were all suppose to come home together. The worse day of my life is coming soon and fast. Thats a day that crushes and I wont ever forget it. Your a true hero I looked up to you in some ways. Thankyou Manny "Chico" for being a friend. I miss you."
PG of Albany NY

"Happy Easter Manny"
Bobbi

"Happy Thanksgiving Manny ! We love you !"
Lucindy Blanco of Haverstraw Ny

"Hi Manny:
I just wanted to express my love and say that your always thought of. You"ll always will be in our hearts forever. Your Cousin xoxoxo"
Maribel of Brooklyn, NY

"hey manny...just thinking about you today..i had isabella today :) so is so much like you! i'll always be there for her and take care of her for you...i love you and miss you always"
your sister, Gina of cape coral, fl

"HAPPY BIRTHDAY MANNY' YOU ARE OUR SHINING STAR, OUR ANGEL."
AUNT ZORAIDA

"Manny, you were famous today! lol! You were given birthday wishes from me and a song dedicated to you on Z100 this morning! I know you would've thought that was so cool.. lol. Manny, there is not a single day that goes by that I do not think about you! Today, I am celebrating your birthday because you remain alive in my heart! Happy Birthday Manny! I love you always and forever!!!!"
Asia-Lee of Miami, Florida

"Happy Birthday Manny! Your memory will last a lifetime....Love, Karen."
Karen Madar of Garnerville

"Happy Birthday Manny!!!! Still not a day goes by that I don't think of you. I will go to your house with a dozen roses as I do every year. Sit with your mom and talk and laugh and cry. She says to me your just not going to stop coming are you? I tell her unless I move away she is stuck seeing me twice a year :) I miss you and continue to keep you in my memory and heart."
Elyssa Frank of Tuxedo, NY

"Happy Birthday Manny. You are never forgotten. Thinking of you all the time."
Bobbi

"Manny..I spent the day with your mom today we are still going strong with our cause....You will never be forgotten, forever in our hearts. Thankyou for being a wonderful son to my best friend she had you for such a short time but the years you were in her life will stay with her for a life time...Your family and friends love and miss you so much.
Gone but never forgotten......
Love you,
Gracie"
Gracie McGannon of Garnerville, NY

"Happy Father's Day Manny ... Never forgotten....Love You Always..."

"It's Memorial Day.. And you've been on my mind all day.. We miss you so much.. Things just arent the same like how they used to be.. But i know your in heaven looking down and watching after us..... We Lov You Manny !!"
Lucindy Blanco of Haverstraw

"You are being honored all over our country this weekend, Manny. I love you and miss you and I am thinking of you today and always.....remembering what you sacrificed for us. You are always in my heart and I love you."
Bobbi of Cape Coral, Fl

"Always thinking of you......
miss you..."
Elyssa

"Manny,

It has been over two years and still my heart breaks when I think of you. What an amazing person you are and your smile that went from ear to ear. We knew each other since kindergarden and I can say that I am bessed to have known such a caring person. You are missed now and always."
Erika Russell of Canton, GA

"Isabella -

People may be able to delete what I have posted for you, but I will ALWAYS be her to tell you about you real daddy. So many people know and love him. We will NEVER let hi die."
Alyce of Haverstraw

"Manny I just had my junior prom. I keep thinking when we were chasing you and Karen to take pictures of you for your prom.I was wishing you were here. I was wearing your favored color dress.Titi Yolanda was crying but I told her I know you are looking down at use.MISS YOU SO MUCH.I know you'll be at my 18 birthday party looking in."
YOUR SISTER, GIGI

"thinking of you always manny...miss you more than you can know...love you and cant wait to see you again one day...i'll always look after isabella for you...love you with all my heart

your sister"
Gina Castillo

"Correction: It wasn't your aunt who said that comment so I apologize for that."
Asia-Lee of Miami, Florida

"Today, marks the second year that you were taken away from us and it feels as if it were yesterday. Manny, you truly were an angel on earth.. and like your aunt said, "God doesn't like ugly".. so this is why I believe he wanted you by his side and not surrounded by those who were phony and loved you temporarily.. but unfortunately you left behind many people that genuinely loved, adored, and admired you.. and always will! There was no one like you and there never will be. By the way, I am sorry that I cannot make it to go visit you today like I promised I would and have been doing, for every birthday and anniversary, but I moved out of state (I will be there for your birthday though). Well, I graduated finally and am now a teacher.. and I am going to continue to make you proud.. because you have given me the strength to get this far. Manny, I thank you for giving me so many precious memories that I will never forget. Everyday that passes is a day we get closer. Your memory will live on in me forever! Ivan and I, love you and miss you so much!

Love,
Asia-Lee

P.S. YOU are Isabella's father.. and nothing can change that."
Asia-Lee of Miami, Florida

"Manny, its been 2 years since i was standing in my kitchen hearing the news about you. I still can't believe it. All the sudden I was flooded with memories of you. All those times you saved me at the pharmacy or Kira saved me at the pharmacy. And I'm glad I know exactly where I can go when I'm thinking of you and everyone there will understand. I just look at the pictures of you from high school and your wedding and i look at Isabella's picture and I feel better because I know you left behind someone who will inevitably posess your bravery and courage. We miss you!"
tricia of garnerville, ny

"Manny I love and miss you so much. There are days when I laugh seemingly for no reason, people around me must think I've lost it but little silly things you used to do come to my mind. Then there are days like today when I just can't help but think you were taken from us too soon. I sit here and cry and hurt and want others to understand why you did what you did was for a reason. Your mother raised to to care for and stand up for those who could not stand for themselves. You grew from a little boy into a wonderful, caring man who cared enough for people you didn't even know to sacrafice yourself for them. I know you watch over all of us, sometimes laughing, sometimes crying along with us wishing you could comfort us. I need you to watch over Michael, he wants to get out of recruiting and go back to Iraq. I understand he has a sense of responsibility that only a man like you can understand. I truly love the fact that the two of you became friends and were there for each other. Thank you for being my friend. We will see you again in Heaven. Love Alyce"
of Haverstraw, NY

"Thinking of you everyday Manny especially at both this two year anniversary of you being home with Jesus and this Easter Season. I love you."
Bobbi

"manny just thinking of you there is not a day that i dont think of you or cry for you it is almost two years now since your gone.a kiss or a hug from manny made things better, it was the sweet,subtle,simple ways you let people know you cared that made you manny. you always had the best intention but you were to young to always make the best decisions.i am so sorry that my family only saw your daughter once too.my heart breaks for your mother who you loved so much who mad you the man you became.i am sorry you got cremated and not bured with you brother as you would of liked.but god would get use through this i remember when you came home in your uniform running up my drive way with your beutiful smile and grin looking as handsome as ever. i got the bigs hug i can still feel today.LOVE YOU MANNY"
aunt zoraida

"Manny ~ Thinking of you always....you will forever be in my heart (April 2, 1999). We know, everyday, that you are looking down and protecting those that truly, truly loved you. You are safe now from all harm....and resting peacefully."
Karen Madar of Garnerville, NY

"yolanda i am sorry it took two years for you to see your grandaughter. I know manny would not of like that because i know how much manny loved you and his fam .i hope his baby will have his big heart because i know you have a big heart. manny and god dont like ugly i know he is watching over you everyday keep his memory with you ,for memories never die.i know he lives on in your heart,forever and everyday.my prayers are always with you"

"Yolanda i was glad to hear you saw your grandaughter when she came to mannys home town with her mom and new daddy and new sister.keep your faith in god, may god bless you."

"You will always be alive in our hearts !! ..Remember Senior Cut Day... Our favorite memory to always talk about... Well we still think of you every time we go to Six Flags..Nitro Baby !!! We love you Manny !!!"
Lucindy Blanco of Haverstraw, New York

"To Yolanda and family, May the memories your family holds in their hearts for Manny live on for ever...Manny was a hero to all of us.It is evident that in his short life, he touched the hearts and soul of many."

"Thank you for remaining alive in our hearts and making yourself known. We all love and miss you here. Happy Valentines Day."
Bobbi

"MERRY CHRISTMAS MANNY. WE LOVE YOU."

"hey manny..miss you so much...wish you were here with us always...always thinking of you...love you always"
Gina Castillo of Haverstraw, Ny

"For this Veteran's Day, thank you, Manny, for your ultimate sacrifice. I love you."

"Hi, Manny HAPPY BIRTHDAY . we miss you so much. Thank you for Isabella , she is a joy she calls me aunt Meme. frank And Christian miss you a great deal. we will always love you . see you in heven. Love Michele , Frank & christian oxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox"
Michele of Cape Coral, florida

"HAPPY BITHDAY MANNY my heart go out to your 1 and only mother YOLANDA who knows very well what it is to lose her son. I can only amagine the pain in her heart . MY PRAYER ARE ALWAYS WITH HER THERE IS A GOD."

"Hey Manny!! i just found out about this and its pretty coool. So yeah today is your birthday!!! wooo!!! we miss you soooooo much!! Aunt Bobbie made a cookie cake for you. we sang to you and then ate it !! haha it was really good. you would of loved it!! hehe well yeahh Happy Birthday! and i lovee you sooo much! and miss you tons !!! cant wait to see you again someday!! xoxo much lovee<33"
Jillian Guerra of Cape Coral, Fl/USA

"happy 22nd birthday manny!
love you and miss you always!"
gina castillo of haverstraw, ny

"Make yourself familiar with the angels, and behold them frequently in spirit; for without being seen, they are present with you ~ Happy Birthday Manny ~ Thank you for all you've done.

Hold onto your strength, Yolanda…I love you!"
Karen Madar of Garnerville, NY

"Happy Birthday Manny!!!!
Thinking of you always"
Elyssa

"love and miss you manny-happy almost birthday...you will always be loved and remembered"
Gina Castillo

"Happy Birthday son. I love and miss you very much. Isabella is so beautiful but I know you are with her everyday. Enjoy the cookie cake I'm making for you. Muah."
Bobbi

"I cant wait for his daught to under stand what a great man her father manny was,and what a great family he came from, sleep with the angels"

"Kira & Bella, Yolanda & Family,
As Memorial Day approaches, please know that Manny's service and your sacrifice has not been forgotten. Your families continue to be in our thoughts and prayers."
Kaye of OK

"Not a day goes by that I don't think of you. I know, everyday, that you are looking down and protecting those that you love." There is and always will be a piece of you with me forever. ~Miss and love you Manny!"
Karen of Garnerville, NY

"I think of you everyday and see you when I look into your daughter's eyes. Sleep with the Angels. Love your mother in law, Bobbi"

"Dear Manny,

Prior to April 12, 2005, I can honestly say I was a lost soul. I always focused on the minor imperfections in life, felt that I had nothing to live for, and took the precious, little things in life for granted. I was heart broken from a recent break up with an ex, was stressed out about school, and the one man I love more than anything, Ivan, my brother, was not talking to me. I was extremely depressed and felt that my life was not worth living.

On the morning of April 12, 2005, I woke up that morning with all of the negative aspects in life on my mind. I said to myself, "Here we go again Asia, another day filled with agony and pain". I went to school that morning and during the day, my stomach started to rumble. I felt like something was wrong but I would have never thought it had something to do with you.

My mother walked in after work and I saw the pain in her eyes from the moment she walked in. I was bracing myself for the forthcoming news. I inhaled a great deep breath and after only one word, your name, "Manny", I fell to the ground, gasping for air. I screamed, "No!! It can't be!! Not Manny!! Not my baby brother!! He is only 20 years old!!". That night, I could not sleep. I kept saying to myself, "It has to be a mistake! I refuse to believe it until I see it for myself"

The next morning, I went to school, in denial. I ran into a friend of mine and picked up "The Journal News" and there you were, front cover. It was an article about you, and had two pictures, one with you, your wife, and daughter and one of your mother, Yolanda, my step mother. It suddenly hit, the indescribable pain. I felt as if someone stabbed a knife in my heart and kept pushing. Reality suddenly hit.

I rushed over to your house. On the way, I am surprised I did not get into a car accident. Every time I saw something that reminded me of you, that pain just got stronger. The Palisades Mall, I remember when we anticipated on the Grand Opening and now it has been open for years. The railroad tracks, I remember how I use to be scared to cross them and you use to find it to be funny and silly. The cemetary, the one your brother was buried in, I remember how you use to tell me that when you pass, you wanted to be buried right next to him. The baseball field, I remember going to your games and cheering for you. You loved playing short stop, just like Jeter and you always said you were going to be better than him one day.

When I arrived at your house, It was almost as if all I saw was complete darkness. It was not the same without your presence and that smile. I envisioned all of the memories we shared in that house. Remember the time we put ketchup of your face and pretended you got hurt on April Fools Day? Boy, we almost got our asses kicked. Remember the time you and Ivan went into the basement to do laundry and you saw a possum? For two grown boys, you guys screamed like little girls, lol. Remember the time we went to Jersey Shore? We had a blast. Looking at those stairs in that house made me want to cry. I remember all of the times you use to race down them and tumble over your own two feet. You were so clumsy at times. The list goes on and on.

Everytime I see a box of cocoa pebbles, a can of spaghetti and meatballs, ..7 on the Mc Donald's menu, and bagels with cream cheese and jelly, I think of you. Actually, there is not a day that goes by that I don't think about you! When we were young, everyone else was always preoccupied with other things so in reality, all we had was eachother. We were inseparable! Manny, I thought that when my ex and I broke up, my heart was broken. But in reality, my heart became broken the day you left this world. I was so hurt, yet so angry! Why you?! Why not me?!

Manny, it is because of you, I live each day of life to its fullest. It is because of you I value the little things in life. It is because of you, I have the strength to overcome any obstacle. It is because of you, I continue to reach for my goals. Even though I am grateful for all of these things, I would give them up in a second to have you back in my life. As much as I want to cry sometimes, I always find a way to stop because you always hated when I cried. You always protected me and even though you may not be here today, I know you are still watching over me from up above. I will love you always and forever lil bro! I will see you when I get there.

Love your sis, Asia-Lee





R.I.P. Manny Lopez, My step brother, My hero!



Purpose: There are many reasons why I wrote this. My intentions were not to make anyone sad or to shed a tear. In life, we all tend to stress things that are not of great importance. We all take the people in our lives for granted. I will be the first to admit that I am guilty of such. If you love someone, tell them you love them at every given opportunity! I wish I could tell Manny I love him one last time, even though I know he knows I do and always will. Writing this took a lot out of me and this is part of my healing process because I am still hurt, probably always will be. I also want to share the life and memories of Manny that I have with everyone. He was a great kid, filled with so much joy and laughter. He died a hero, my hero. It is true when they say that the good ones always go first, because he was the best! There is no one like him and there never will be. He may not be here today, but his legacy will live on in me forever!"
Asia Borras of Bronx, NY

"All I can say is I can't believe it's been a year. But there was not one day that went by in this past year that I did not think of Manny. Not one day that I didn't think of his family or his daughter. And this day for the rest of my life will not be a day of sadness but remeberance. I will never forget Manny or his wonderful smile and laugh. I will never forget to go and visit the woman he loved so dear just because thats something he can not do. I will shed a few tears, but give many more smiles in remeberance of the soldier who died for the country I get to live in every single day.
"As day comes and night falls,
for the rest of our lives we'll miss ya'll.....even though life must go one,
we still mourn while wishin you were home".
Rest in Peace Manny
I Miss You"
From the Heart-Elyssa

"Thanks for all the memories Bro ! You were a true friend and I will always miss you. Going home will never be the same. You are truly missed my friend."
Jorge B Alonso of Raleigh , NC

"manny, it is not the same with out you. you are truly my brother. i know god made you an angel to watch over our family. you are truly missed.i know you are in heaven to spend christmas with your dad, brother. merry christmas!xoxo LOVE Your SiSTER ADRI"
Adri of w. hav., ny

"I love you Manny a lot. I know you are okay all the time because you are in heaven with Jesus. Merry Christmas. Your step brother"
Christian of CAPE CORAL, FLORIDA

"Merry Christmas my son. How special is it to be with Jesus himself on his birthday? You are truly missed here on earth. Our loss is Heaven's gain. I love you. Your mother-in-law Bobbi"
of CAPE CORAL, FLORIDA

"I had the honor of meeting Manny, his lovely wife Kira, and beautiful Bella on the night Manny deployed to Iraq. When I met him, the first thing I noticed was a smile that lit up one of the darkest nights in my life. I also noticed the way his eyes sparkled when he looked at Kira and Isabella. I watched these brave young men tell the wives goodbye and march off into the darkness. Because Manny and my son were friends, he and Kira automatically became "our kids." I will never forget the Instant Message and the phone call that came in the middle of the night on April 12. My son choked back the tears to tell me about Manny. He was 7000 miles away, grieving for his friend, and there was no way to hug him. All I could do was cry with him and his wife. You see, Manny was my son's best friend and his roommate in Baghdad. Manny was a very special young man and will be missed by many. I have a picture of Manny on my mantle - he will always have a special place in the hearts of our family."
Kaye of Eufaula, OK

"Lopez was a great guy, a good friend, and a damn good soldier. Not a day goes by when I don't think about him. He was always a pleasure to talk with and he always had a story to tell. I'll miss him."
SPC Anthony Brasel of HQ 3-7 Commo

"Manny I LOVE YOU...Happy 21st Birthday...Life is not the same without you and it never will be! xoxoxo
I.W.M.I.B.J.F.Y!!!!!! Your cousin, your sister...ur blood....always nd forever
xoxoxo"
Gigi Accattato of W.Haverstraw, NY

"MANNY YOU ARE GONE BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN WE WILL KEEP YOUR MEMORY ALIVE.... HAPPY BIRTHDAY 9/26 LOVE YOU BIG BROTHER"
ADRIANNA of HAVERSTRAW

"HAPPY 21 BIRTHDAY MANNY" LOVE YOU AUNT ZORAIDA, UNCLE CARLO, GIGI, ADRIANNA, CARLO AND ANGELO.YOUR MOM, DAD, UNCLE, AUNT, BROTHER, COUSIN, YOUR EVERTHING ."
AUNT ZORAIDA of HAVERSTRAW NY ROCKLAND

"Manny you are loved by so manny people and will never be forgotten. You will always be in our hearts. Manny you were so very brave and will always be a true hero to everyone who knew you."
Frances Serrano

"IT has been a very difficult and emotional taxing time on all of us mostly my sister YOLANDA.The mother of this fine young man.I am so sorry she was not given the courtesy as the mother of 20 years, like she didn't exist.Shame was brought to my nephews funeral with Paul Fusco a personal photogragher hired he said to me he was hired by the fam.I know he wasn't hired by Manny's fam we did not have time to think.His honor was taken away from him when his honor guard where not on top or bottom of his casket.Due to the three ring circus.Tension was brought to his funneral.Something Manny would not of loved if you know Manny his weakness was his kindness.Always trying to please and make everyone happy and MANNY alway did.He brought joy to everyone who knew him.The last couple of months has been about the loss of a man who went to fight for his country and lost his life in the process.YOU WILL BE MISSED AND FOREVER REMEMBERED."
Aunt Zoraida

"I still see you radiating down the halls of the place we refferred to as a prison. That bright, intriguing smile of yours will live in our hearts forever. You made us all have better days because of that smile. I couldn't go to your wake because I can't bury another friend. You deserve so much more than a teary eyed goodbye from me. You deserve more than this letter, but for now, words are all I have. You are so brave. People like you are one in a million and I'm glad I had the chance to be your friend. You know Manny, no matter how far we go, and how much one changes, we are always remembered for who we were in high school. You were and still are energetic, charismatic, personable, strong, handsome and intelligent. I don't know if I'll ever get in touch with Kira again. God knows what her and I went through on the side lines. It's crazy when I look back at it now. But you know how her and I were, we never got in with those girls. When push came to shove, we were there and ready to win, to cheer, to give hope to the fans and our team. I can't sit here and regret not remaining close with her, but I will tell you, that out of all the girls, she's the one I've thought of most. I know, deep down, Kira will be the one to come out on top. She is just as brave as you are. And when your daughter comes to the age when things just magically fall into place, she will be as secure, confident, intelligent and beautiful as her parents. Life takes us on this crazy rollercoaster and the only way to really feel the rush is to ride in the front. Manny, thank you for being you. Thank you for giving our generation the hope, the courage and the faith to capture life and to live it with no boundaries. Thank you for allowing me to have a better future. And Kira, please know I am here for you. One day when the time is right, you'll hear from me. Grazie Kira for not being scared to stand out and for being a soldiers wife, the strongest around. And to Belle, you have been blessed to have parents like Manny and Kira. As time goes by, and you ride this rollercoaster, I hope you understand what your father has done for me and all of us in the class of 2005. Do not lose his smile or his heart, because you are the only one fortunate enough to have them."
What's in a name? of North Rockland, NY

"I have to say I just went to Captain Philip Espositos wake and was happy to see the honor guards on the top and botttom of his casket to show the honor for this soldier. I was sadden not to see this at Corporals Manny Lopez wake.But I want to say THANK YOU to his mother Yolanda for raising such a fine man.War will make heroes out of man but parents must first make a man.What an amazing job you have done.My deepest sympaty is sent to your family.I would also like to extend to your family my prayers and for how you are handling this tragic loss and you are respecting the memory of one of the finest man."
E.Rose of Stony Point

"Manny was one of our many who lost such a great life. It hurts many to see such a great guy gone."
jennifer of stony point, New york

"Manny was a soldier that happen to be somebody very close to me.He was my cousin but more like my older brother.Manny grew up with my three younger brothers and sister.We were raised more as brothers and sisters because we were always around each other growing up he was always our babysitter.Every vacation my family and I went on Manny came too.My mother and my aunt Yolanda shared him as a son.He was so close to us when his younger brother was sick and past away.
while my aunt Yolanda was in the hospital caring for him he lived with us and every summer he would spend with my family.I always admire him for the way he loved his mother,his sister and our entire family.His dedication,love and admiration for his mother was priceless.He always protected his mother and sister because he was the man of the house.My aunt Yolanda raised him to be an honorable man who always committed himself to taking care of those he loved.Whenever he saw you,you were always getting a hug or kiss,whether you liked it or not.Although I wish he were still here with us,it makes me happy to know he is with our grandma,his father and little brother who he missed and loved very much.Manny was a very family oriented and always cared for everyone deeply.Manny alway had a smile on his face and always the one to put a smile on your face.I am so proud of him,I love and miss him so much.Manny had a huge love for baseball,my family and I thought he was going to become a baseball player.When he wasn't at his house or my house,he was at the baseball fields playing.He was a graduate of North Rockland High School from the clss of 2002.After he graduated his biggest challenge,which was becoming a husband and a father at such a young age.Eventually when he got married and had a family of his own,he felt the only way to support his his fammily was to enroll in the army.He was so proud to become a member of the US Army and wasn't hesitant about going to Iraq.He could't wait to come home and tell us the ups,down and experiences he had while on his journey in Iraq.He wanted to keep his family and fellow American safe.So whenever I feel like crying I am able to smile through my tears at all the silly memories I had with him.It is very unfortunate that my cousin Manny lost his life,but one thing I know,is that he has truly become a Hero in my famiies heart and soul.Like Manny,there are many other brave men and women out there fight for us,and I pray to God every night he will bring them to their family,because I would never want them to go through the sadness that my family is going through since the day we lost Manny.It has been extremely hard for my family and I,we thank everyone for being so supportive and for helping us keep Manny's sacifice and memory alive."
Gigi Accattato of W.Haverstraw ,Rockland

"I can remember like it was yesterday our trips to Nyack to go shopping then out for pizza and all the swimming days at bowline.I will never forget the times in the park playing with Sam or the first time you introduced me to Thumper.I'll never forget the chicken cutlet and broccoli dinners that my mom made almost every other day for you.There was always a gallon of Rocky Road ice cream in our freezer and sprinkles in the cabinet with your name written all over them.Memory is the dairy we can carry with us.I can recall the summer we went to Seaside Height and when you took me jet skiing for the first time.I was terrified but you promised to keep me safe and you even let me drive.From then we were able to race each other on our own jet skis in Dayton.I can still see us driving to McD ever morning and KFC every afternoon when school got out.We would visit each other at work and talk on the phone for hours at a time.I'll never forget the time you showed up at my house with a four foot teddy bear and held it up to my window on the second floor.You always knew how much I loved those stuffed animals.From Bear Mountain and Anthony's Pier 9 to our limo experience and movie nights we shared so many lasting memories.They couldn't even begin to fit on this page the list goes on and on.We were inseperable and even dressed alike.I always felt as though I had know you my entire life.I admire you for your strength and courage.You never gave up especially the time we went to ski at Mt.Vernon.You attempted to snowboared but that just did't work.Then you tried to skis.I can see you right now not being able to keep your balance and falling on your butt.You had such a little pout on your face.In spite of this you kept trying and trying and finally you soared down the mountain like you've been skiing for years.Your sense of humor got the best of everyone especially the time we played dress up on my birthday with our friends.I remember your hopeless attempts to write poems and letters.Yet they always left a mark in my heart.I will cherish them forever.Don't let the fears of striking out hold you back You were an amazing baseball player.We had so many good times at the Little League fields.We experienced many road trips togeher with the team in Daddy's civic to your away games.I can see you now looking up at me while standing on second base with those bright eyes and big smile.Everyone knew how much baseball meant to you and I am privileged to say that I was able to experience those moments with you. These are the Time to Remember and I will always hold them in my heart.No matter how many months or years go by I will never forget you I will always remember my first love. You taught me that anger only makes you smaller and that forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you were.If it wasn't for you. I would have never gone away to college.There was a reason for you to entering my life at the time you did and even though right now I don't understand why I met you..one day I will.We all love and miss you greatly.I hope you are at peace with the angels.Your life ended too soon,but my memory of you will last forever. The gauardian angels of life somtimes fly so high as to be beyond sight, but they are always looking down upon us.The three years that I spent with you will be treasured for a lifetime."
Karen of of Haverstraw

"My heart fills with joy when I think back to that special time we shared in our lives.You may have only held my hand for a little while but you will hold a piece of my heart forever.you were my first love and what we had was something precios,Thoughout all our good times and bad times.I always knew that you loved me and I loved you.No one can take that away from us.
When I think back to my teenage years I see one face,yours.I see yours smile and hear your laugh,but I also see the pain we shared.Remember how you would always make me Drive Myself Crazy?You have truly helped me become the person that I am today.We did't agree on much and often challenged each other daily.I wanted you to wear a pink vest for the prom,but you insisted on wearing the red one.In spite of our differenes we had one thing in common and that was the way we felt about each other.
You were an amazing cousin,"Big Brother"We use to have so much fun babysitting GiGi,Carlo,Adri and Angelo.But did you make us laugh'"

"Friendship is not defined by the time spent together but by the memories that were shared. Senior year in high school would have not been the same without my memories of Manny. From the Yankee parade in the city to the "diner disguises" We always seemed to find something entertaining to do. Who could forget the penny dropping days or our adventure to Six Flags. Manny was extremely charismatic and his charms was able to put a smile on any frowning face. Over the years we may grown apart but my memories of him will never fade. I will always remember Manny for his bravery and courage. The sacifice and dedication Manny made can be summed up in the following lyrics, "So when you feel like hope is gone,look inside of you and be strong. And you'll finally see the truth,that a hero lies in you."

Manny was a strong, brave individual and I am proud to say that he was a hero to our country.

I Will Love and Miss You Always,"
Karen Burckardt of Haverstraw N.Y.

"Our family has watched you grow from an infant to a boy and then a man. You were such a good boy. Everyone was so proud of you through the all the phases in your life. As a man you were a wonderful son,nephew and cousin. We will always remember all the summers we had getting together with all the family and running around the back yard with all your cousins in newburgh.you were one of the clumsiest kid and man I ever knew.You were alway breaking or spilling something.
Your only weakness was your kindness. Always trying to please and make everone happy;and Manny you did. You brought joy to everyone who knew you. You will be missed and forever remembered."
Aunt Donna of Ocala Florida

"To Kira, Yolanda, Bobbi and Bella,

I am so sorry for your loss - Manny was truly one of the sweetest men I have ever met. He loved you Kira so much and you saw this in his smile when he looked at you or spoke of you. It seems like yesterday that I was helping plan your baby shower and talking to Manny about the arrival of your baby. I have a fond memory of Manny at your bridal shower sitting with his mom and hugging her. I always knew that he was going to make a great husband because he was so open and affectionate with his mom. I am so thankful that he was able to meet and spend time with his baby girl - he will always be watching over his family.

Manny thank you for making the biggest sacrifice - you fought and died for your country so that we may all live with FREEDOM. You are a true hero! You will never be forgotten..."
Zchantell McDonnell of New City New York ~ Rockland County

"Manny- there are some people that come into your life, and no matter where you go or what you do in life you just never forget them. You were without a doubt one of those people in my life. Although we haven't seen eachother in a while, I've always thought about you. I will miss you terribly, but there are some things that I know not only I will miss. That smile of yours- everyone knows that smile. Your amazing personality and demeanor about yourself that no other will ever posess. The way you cared so deeply for your mother, family and friends. And Manny I could not be any more proud of the life you started and will now be carried on through your beautiful baby girl. Also your courage to fight for our country. Thank you, thank you for being you the wonderful handsom man you are. I love you and will miss you, but you will forever stay alive in my heart. To Kira and Isabella although you may not know me, I will always keep you in my hearts and prayers. I know how truly special Manny was. And Yolanda I don't think I know a stonger woman, I'm glad we talked thank you.
I will miss you Manny!
<3"
Elyssa Frank of Suffern, NY

"Manny,
i could never imagine how hard it is to say goodbye. i loved you much, you werent my brother-in-law, my sisters husband, or anything else. You were my BROTHER. thats all i ever said to anyone. we were so amazingly close and i felt you were one of my mom's own children. you never made me feel i was less than anyone or not good enough. you always had a smile on your face and that always brought a smile to mine. when ever i was upset you and kira would always go out of your way to make me feel better. we had sooooo many fun memories i will cherish forever and ever. a singer once said, "every moment spent with you is a moment i'll treasure." i will treasure every time we were together. from the movie nights-fright fest- the safari-riding in my jeep-henna's-dance machine-trips to the beach-summer vacations w/ the family-you trying to learn we didnt start the fire-our trip to georgia-me making cookies-everything manny i will remember everything. and i know when im upset you will be looking down at me from heaven telling me that same thing you always did, EVERYTHING WILL BE FINE GINA. you always promised me that. i will be there always for you and kira and of course my prescious niece Belle. i know now you can look at her from a better view, but i will be there for you to help her grow, i promise i wont ever leave her or kira. i miss you and i wish anything you can come back to us but i know i will see you soo soon in heaven i know your shining down on all of us from heaven. i can cry so much for you to come home but that wont work. for now i have pictures, vidoes, and memories i will never EVER forget. unitl one day when we will meet again...."
Gina of Haverstraw, Ny

"LOPEZ YOU STILL LIVE IN OUR HEARTS. WE WILL ALWAYS REMEMBER YOU.
TO HIS WIFE: BE STRONG FROM WHEREVER MANNY IS HE IS TAKING CARE OF YOU, MAKE HIM PRUOD.
xiomara.osorio@us.army.mil
SIGNAL SOLDIER. CLASS 14-04"
PFC OSORIO, XIOMARA of GIESSEN, GERMANY

"Manny, when your mom told me you were going to Fort Stewart, all I could think of was how wonderful it would be for two of my favorite "boys" to be together. I'm glad you were given the opportunity to become friends. You know I always had a hard time accepting you grew up. It was twice as hard for me to accept the fact that both you and Michael had to go to Iraq. I held onto the comfort that the two of you would be "together". I know if Michael has to go back you will watch over him for me.

It still seems unreal. Even after weeks I keep expecting to wake up and find out your OK. How can this have happened to someone who gave all to everyone and never asked for anything in return? Chelsea has been there for all of us. It's hard to see her so strong when I feel like falling apart. She won't leave your mom alone. Everyday she calls her and wants to go over and visit. I think she's holding onto Angelo because he's a part of you. She chases him around now. I can remember the days when she chased you around the field with her walker. You were an amazing boy and grew into what all men should aspire to. My heart hurts each day, your mom is so strong for everyone, so Chelsea tells me "No crying in front of Titi Loli, Okay?" I don't know how she does it. I guess the bottom line is that in order for you to have become the man you became, you had to have the most amazing mother in the world. I love your mom more than she could know.

We love you Manny and you will live in all of us forever. I know you will be watching over us always, I'll try to behave and stay out of trouble.

Love ALyce"
Alyce Ingram of Havestraw, NY USA

"Hero - A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, especially one who has risked or sacrificed his or her life.

After you read that, how many people can you think of that go along with that definition? Well I can think of two. Manny & his mother Yolanda. Manny was a gentlemen. He would do anything for anyone. He went to Iraq to sacrifice his life, to keep us here in the United States safe and free. There is no words to describe the pain we all feel knowing that we are never going to see that smile, or hear that laugh again. But we do all have memories of him, that will always be in our hearts forever. Manny wasn’t like many 20 year olds, he was different. He was a special person. He already had a family and was a homeowner. His life was set. Everyone is so proud of what he has accomplished in such a short period of time. Manny, you are truly a hero in all our eyes, and we know you are watching down on us every second of the day.

You will never know the strongest person in the world if you don’t know Yolanda. She is an extraordinary lady that has had to overcome many obstacles in her life. I have never met someone with so much heart, and courage in my life. Manny took after her, and that is why he was the way he was. He was brought up by a wonderful women. When Gian Carlo died a piece of Yolanda’s heart was taken with his death, but she still had her two other kids to keep her going. When she got the news about Manny another piece of her heart was taken away from her. Even though 2/3rd of her heart is gone, she will still be the Yolanda that everyone knows, because she still has people that care and love her. The past few weeks have been crazy for her, but somehow she has manage to get through each and every day. I know many of her family and friends ask themselves how she is dealing with the death of her son, and all the nonsense going on, but Yolanda is the person that makes peace with everything and everyone. She is rare, because many other people think of just themselves, but she is thinking about everyone but herself. Yolanda, I give you all the credit in the world, you are my hero. Stay strong like you always have been, and know that you have people here for you every second of the day!

Thank you two for being hero’s to me!"
Amanda McGannon of Garnerville, NY

"TO MY SON IN LAW WHO WAS MORE LIKE A SON TO ME. FROM THE MINUTE MANNY CAME INTO MY DAUGHTER'S LIFE, HE BECAME ONE OF US. THEY WERE THE HAPPIEST COUPLE I'VE EVER SEEN IN MY LIFE. A PART OF ME WAS CUT OUT WHEN MANNY WENT HOME TO LIVE WITH THE LORD. I AM SO PROUD TO HAVE BEEN ABLE TO CALL HIM SON AND BE THERE FOR THE LAST 4 YEARS OF HIS LIFE TO SHARE IN THE ENGAGEMENT, WEDDING, PREGNANCY, BIRTH OF BABY ISABELLA AND THE LAST DAY HE WALKED AMERICAN GROUND WHEN HE LEFT FT. STEWART, GA. I WILL MISS YOU MANNY SO MUCH AND WILL TREASURE EVERY MEMORY I HAVE OF YOU AND EVERY PICTURE AND, OF COURSE, THE BABY. I PROMISED YOU THE DAY YOU LEFT I WOULD TAKE OF YOUR WIFE AND DAUGHTER, AND I PROMISE YOU UNTIL I HAVE NO BREATH LEFT IN ME THAT I WILL TAKE CARE OF THEM FOR YOU. I LOVE YOU WITH ALL OF MY HEART. I KNOW YOU WILL TAKE OF ALL OF US FROM UP ABOVE. SLEEP WITH THE ANGELS OF THE LORD.

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT KIRA FOR YOUR SUPPORT AND LOVE. 239-265-6865."
Bobbi Francabandera of CAPE CORAL, FLORIDA

"Manny,you were never like a cousin to me, you were a bigger brother to me. We were never raised as cousins, just brothers and sisters all of us. Kathy, you, Gian Carlo, Adri, Angelo, Carlo and I. I don't know why it had to be you, the brother I grew up with and looked up to so MUCH!! The first time I held Isabella, Adri and I cried knowing she was a piece of you. I am so happy to say I got memories that I will never EVER FORGET! You always looked after us (your family) and everyone. Even if you didn't know someone that well you looked after them. That's why I am so proud to say you were my brother!! I promise you will never be forgotten, your my hero and everyone else's hero. Just help us to be strong because we miss you and forever will. I am able to smile through my tears thinking of all the silly memories we had and vacations you and the family took together. I will make it "BIG" just for you!! Although I miss you and what happened to you is not fair It brings comfort to my heart that you are with Gian Carlo because I know how much you missed him, and your dad, Abuela, and Grandpa.
Love you forever and always my big brother/ hero,
Gigi
Just know even though I can't see you I know you're still there and watching and smiling down on us from heaven. You will truly be missed...NEVER FORGOTTEN!!"
Gianna of West Haverstraw, NY

"I feel so lucky to say that I had the priveldge of knowing Manny. He was one of the most genuine people I have ever met! Always had a smile on his face and always knew how to put one on yours too! He wasn't one of those guys who gave you the nod when he said hello, it was always a hug and a kiss on the cheek. I know how much Manny and Kira loved eachother and Isabella is a sign of that! Manny shines through that baby's eyes! I have no words for the pain I feel when I think about Yolanda, Kira, and Isabella. Everytime I hear something relating to Iraq or the army I can't help but think of Manny. I am so grateful for his scrifice but then I wish he had never even joined the army. Manny, I love you and miss you and will keep your memory alive forever! Yolanda I can not even express my sorrow for you! Kira, I Love you so much! And you know I am always here for whatever you or Isabella need!! You will all forever be in my prayers!"
Nikki Michelitch of West Haverstraw, NY

"Everytime i think about what has happen, tears form behind my eyes... Manny didn't deserve this at all - he was too good of a person. But I guess what he did proves that right there. So on that note, thank you Manny for giving up your life to save ours... the statement I MISS YOU can't even explain how me along w/ our whole town feels. You are our hero & you will always hold a special place in all our hearts."
Jessica McGannong of Garnerville, NY

"I got to spend the afternoon with Yolanda, Manny's mother, sharing such wonderful memories that she holds deep within her heart. Im so truly sorry to all his family, friends, and fellow officers for the lost of a true great young man. I know that Yolanda would love to hear from all Manny's friends so she asked me to extend to you all her address and cell phone #. Lets help keep Manny's memories alive for his mom. This will help her through her healing process. Thank you all in advance for helping me fullfill this last wish that Yolanda has.

Yolanda Lopez
10 Orchard Street
Haverstraw, NY 10927

Cell #: 1-845-461-7636"
Amanda McGannon of Garnerville, NY

"It's Crazy to think that this happend. I still deny it sometimes. I remember Manny always had a smile, and would make everyone in he Company laugh. Being in HQ Platoon of D co 3-7 IN was always fun when he was around. Even if we had to work for hours on end, he made time to laugh and we would laugh with him. I had the Privilage to have him in my truck on the two trips we took to Baghadad. He would always talk about his wife and New Baby daughter. And how God blessed him with the new addition to his family. I didn't know how close i was to him until he was killed. I guess it's true that you don't know what you got till it's gone. I will miss him. He will never be forgotten."
PFC Loftis of Baghdad, Iraq

"Manny-

Well goodbyes are never easy brother, but some are made less painful knowing that the reasons behind them were honorable. Yours was the most honorable a person can make, and we won't forget it soon, and we'll get 'em man, we'll get 'em. You and Wessel take care of each other, and watch out for all of us in the fight. Heads up brother."
PFC. Zachariah Chitwood of Baghdad, Iraq

"YOU ARE A TRUE HERO MANNY...YOU WERE ALWAYS THE ONE THAT PUT A SMILE ON EVERYONES FACE...I CANT BELIEVE THAT YOU'RE GONE...TO THINK THAT YOU'D TAKE SUCH A RISK TO MAKE A BETTER LIFE FOR YOU AND YOUR FAMILY SHOWS JUST WHAT KIND OF GUY YOU WERE, A GIVING AND UNSELFISH ONE..I HAVE NOTHING BUT RESPECT AND ADMIRATION FOR YOU..I KNOW YOUR WIFE, KIRA, WILL BE STRONG FOR YOUR DAUGHTER...SHE WON'T LET HER DAUGHTER EVER FORGET HOW BRAVE HER FATHER WAS..GOD BLESS YOU MANNY...YOU ARE FOREVER IN OUR HEARTS"
STEPHANIE of NEW YORK

"To my former teamate, my friend, and my hero, Manny you will truly be missed. What hurts me the most is that you sacraficied your life in order to protect mine and many others. That right there was a quality you always had even when we were growing up, always looking after your boyz. I wish you were still here with us but I know your in a better place along side with your brother and father. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family."
W. Santiago of West Haverstraw, NY

"No words can explain how much you mean to our town.. We will miss you but at the same time we will celebrate your life .. You did the unthinkable and that is give your life for people.. That alone makes you a Hero..And thats how Haverstraw is gonna Remember you ..."
Omar M. of Haverstraw, NY

"MANNY, I KNOW YOU AND YOUR FAMILY CAME INTO OUR LIVES FOR A SPECIAL REASON. TIME SPENT WAS PRECIOUS, WONDERFUL TIMES WE WILL NEVER FORGET. ALWAYS SO GOOD AT EVERYTHING YOU DID (even fighting off flying tree elk in Oregon)BASEBALL WAS YOUR PASSION,I NEVER MISSED A GAME, NOT A BAD PENTE PLAYER EITHER. I AM SENDING YOUR BEADS TO YOUR MOM, SHE'LL KNOW WHAT TO DO WITH THEM. I COULD SIT AND WRITE FOREVER OF ALL THE LAUGHTER AND SOME TEARS YOU AND TRAVIS GAVE ME BUT THOSE STORIES ARE IN MY HEART FOREVER AND THE PICTURES IN MY MIND. MIRANDA WILL WRITE SOON, SHE JUST CAN'T AT THIS TIME. SHE IS HAVING TROUBLE SEEING THROUGH HER TEARS. YOU WERE AND WILL ALWAYS BE LIKE A SON TO ME AND A BROTHER TO TRAVIS AND MIRANDA. I AM SAD I NEVER GOT TO SEE YOUR BABY GIRL. I HEAR SHE LOOKS JUST LIKE YOU! NOW YOU HAVE YOUR WINGS I KNOW YOU WILL WATCH OVER US! IT WAS A TRUE HONOR KNOWING SUCH A WONDERFUL YOUNG MAN AND A TRUE HERO! ALL OUR LOVE, BLESSED BE"
DAWN HAYDEN of GILBERT, ARIZONA

"Manuel was a Brave man, whose sacrifice and loyal service will never be forgotten. My family honors your Hero. All of our prayers are with you."
Jennifer and SSGT Larry Mays of Massillon, Ohio

"He gave his life to help us all
And free us from the war.

He fought for freedom liberty and justice
But now its gone too far.

We’ve lost a man, a friend a father
A husband and a son.

Its hard to fight the feeling,
The battle’s just begun.

He looked handsome in his uniform
He stood tall and proud.

He brought happiness wherever he went
Always standing out from the crowd.

Its was a gift having you in all our lives
Manny, we will always miss you.

Every time we smile,
We know that’s you shining though.

You have a beautiful daughter
I know she will reflect you

And I know your strong wife Kira
Will make sure she’ll never forget you.

You’re our hero Manny,
You’re a champion and a fighter

I hope you know while you were here
You made all our days brighter.

He sacrificed his life
He was courageous, strong and bold

Now he’s gone and we’re grieving
The pain’s too strong to hold.

The definition of Manny is
“God is with us and among us”

You’re an angel and we love you
I know you’ll always bless us!

We Miss You Spc. Manuel Lopez III.
A True Hero!"
Catherine Serrano of Haverstraw, New York

"Dear Lopez Family:
It is with great sadness that I write this. First of all, thank you Manny for your bravery and true heroism serving our Country. May God help your family heal, your daughter to grow up knowing what a wonderful and brave father she had, and may your wife have the strength to follow your dreams and give your daughter a life you would be proud of. Although I did not know you personally, your loss has made a huge impact on all of our lives. May you rest in enternal peace and continue to watch over us as the true angel that you are. Patricia Rivera, North Rockland High School Faculty, Theills, New York"
Patricia of New York

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

"I don't know what to say to a family that has lost a loved one. I do know that God has reasons for everything and I feel he needed a true Christian soilder and Manny just happed to be that soilder. God bless you and your family; you are all in my prayers."
Michelle of Cape Coral,FL USA

"Manny, you were such a special person. I remember you coming over when we were little. You had a good head on you shoulders and always looked so focused. I'm sorry for Kira. I don't know her but I know she loves you and will be a stong mother. God Bless Kira, Isabella and your family. Everyone here misses you, theres a banner on your house with you picture on it. You look so handsome. I know your smiling down on us. I love you Manny and I know you'll never be forgotten."
Catherine of Haverstraw, New York

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

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

"When I think of Manny Lopez and all the memories I have of him I see his wonderful spirit that inspired me and everyone he met. I met Manny and his wife Kira at College a couple of years ago. I knew that I wanted them to be my friends. My husband and I, compaired to them, seemed so different, almost like the friendship would never work but something inside of me said "do whatever you have to do but make friends with these people". Right away I knew how special they were. It is an honor to be able to say that I knew Manny. I knew how goofy he could be and how smart and sensible he was. I knew his love for his wife Kira was a rare love, one that takes a lifetime to create, and thats exactly how it happened. Kira and Manny grew up in Haverstraw NY. They were born at the same hospital and their fathers knew each other. They met when they were 3 years old in nursery school. They continued to grow together and love each other more and more. Manny would tell Kira that one day she would be his bride, she thought YUCK! at the time. It was their dream. They were best friends. In high school was when a more serious relationship developed. They graduated together and soon after moved to Florida together where I had the pleasure of meeting them. They were two peas in a pod. They went everywhere with each other and my husband and I had the best times with them just doing anything from watching movies to miniature golfing. Manny was wonderful with our two girls Mirabelle and Harley. He wanted to be a daddy so much. Kira wanted to be a mommy just as much. I can remember the day that Manny was spoken to about the option of the army. We were at college and they were having an event for all the students. We walked by the rock climbing wall and sure enough a recruiter began talking to both Kira and Manny. He soon after signed up. They were married August 22, 2003. It was an enchanted, royal wedding. It took place in NY and unfortunately I was not able to attend but I saw the video and I cried all the way through it. They created this amazing love, and it multiplied every second they were together, every person they met they touched. We enjoyed the time we spent with him. Anyone who met him saw more than just a face, a name, they saw his courage, his strong sense of responsibility, his overwhelming love and support for Kira and her whole family. Just 4 Months ago yesterday Kira had Isabella Juliet Lopez 6 weeks earlier than expected. She was actually due the day before he shipped out to Iraq. She was healthy and ready to see her daddy and to spend that time with him. She is an amazing baby girl. So very special. When I look at her it is evident that she feels her daddys spiritual arms around her. He loved her with his whole heart. When I look at her beautiful face, I see his eyes and his smile, and that same wonderful shining spirit that was so powerful. We loved him and we deeply miss him. I am so proud to have known him and to have been a small part of his life. Kira is equally as special and I love her and Bella, I am so happy that I am apart of there family and that I will always be there for her in whatever way I can. I know Manny would want our friendship to continue growing and developing. We will forever miss you Manny. Your Life will forever be remembered, we will never forget what you were doing for this country and trying to do for theirs. I will always remember and hold on to the Love that you created."
Morgan Roessner of Cape Coral, Florida United States of America

"Manny, you were always a ray of sunshine in our lives. Your smiles brightened our days, and your heart showed us the way. To the family, nothing reflects more on one's family then the actions of those in it. Manny's dedication and perseverence only shows us just what kind of family he came from. Thank you so much for loaning him to us. My deepest condolances and best wishes."
Jeffrey Li of Baghdad, Iraq

"MANUEL YOU ARE MORE THEN A SOLDIER! AN AMERICAN HERO! ONE THAT IS THE ELITE OF MOST AMERICANS. AN ALL AMERICANS SHOULD BE EXTREMELY THANKFUL TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILY. MANUEL YOU ARE THE PRODUCT OF AMAZING PARENTS. BOTH RAISED A VERY SPECIAL INDIVIDUAL AND A SON. YOU HAVE TOUCHED THE HEARTS OF SO MANY. TO THOSE IN YOUR COMMUNITY, FRIENDS, NEIGHBOR'S, YOUR MILITARY FAMILY, AND YOUR FAMILY. I AM SO THANKFUL THAT YOU SERVED ALONG MY SON. THIS IS BROTHERHOOD BY WATCHING OVER ONE ANOTHERS BACK. YOU MAY NOT KNOWN OF GREGORY. YOU ARE WITH HIM NOW, AND YOUR BROTHERHOOD CONTINUE'S. YOU HAVE NOT GIVEN YOUR LIFE IN VAIN, BUDDY! YOU WILL BE LONG REMEMBERED FOR; PROTECTING US AGAINST TERRORISM AND GIVEN SOME MANY IN THE WORLD. A CHANCE TO ENJOY FREEDOM. YOU WILL ALWAYS BE IN MY HEART AND PRAYS. GOD BLESS!"
LEONARD WAHL of VALLEY STREAM NY

"CPL Lopez was a true hero. It was an honor serving with him over here. As his platoon sergeant he was one of the hardest workers we had within our platoon. He will be missed by all of us."
SGT Licata, Anthony of D 3-7 IN "Dragons"

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

"To the family and friends of Spc. Manuel Lopez III:
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 Manuel 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. Manuel Lopez III:
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 Manuel, 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