Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Pfc. Joseph I. Love

22, of North Pole, Alaska.
Love died in Balad, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV during convoy operations. He was assigned to the 84th Engineer Combat Battalion (Heavy), 8th Sustainment Command (Theater), Schofield Barracks, Hawaii. Died on April 9, 2006.

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"Joe it has been nine years since we lost you and awhile since I wrote on here. The anniversary has just past and still can't believe it has been as long as it has. So much has happened and I wish you were here to meet your new nephews.I know they would love you they ask about you but I just tell them your in heaven and your watching over us because they are too young to understand.I wish you could have met my husband also, but again i know you are in a better place now. I love you with all my heart and miss you. I still think about you quite often.
Love your sis
Brittany Pollash (Fowler) akgirl2789@gmail.com"
Brittany Pollash of Fort Dodge, Iowa

"Joe it has been nine years since we lost you and awhile since I wrote on here. The anniversary has just past and still can't believe it has been as long as it has. So much has happened and I wish you were here to meet your new nephews.I know they would love you they ask about you but I just tell them your in heaven and your watching over us because they are too young to understand.I wish you could have met my husband also, but again i know you are in a better place now. I love you with all my heart and miss you. I still think about you quite often.
Love your sis
Brittany Pollash (Fowler) akgirl2789@gmail.com"
Brittany Pollash of Fort Dodge, Iowa

"I served with Joseph Love. We had the same MOS and I was in his company during the deployment. I think about Love just about everyday, thinking of the man he was, the man he would become. It weighs on my heart that such a good person was taken so early. It could have been any one of us out there. To Joe, you are a hero. To Joe's family, your loss was not in vain. Joe absolutely made this world a better place by standing up for this Country. There isn't a person from his platoon, company or battalion that doesn't think of him as a great man, a hero and as someone who unfortunately had to pay the ultimate sacrifice so others can have freedom. Although it is very hard, I am sure, for the family to deal with such a loss, please be proud of your son and brother. He will never be forgotten."
Matthew Swaggerty of Northville, MI

"Joe, I remember that day like it was yesterday. It was a dark day for our company when we lost you. The last time I seen you , you smiled and said good morning to me while passing bye. I was missing my wife and kids terribly that morning and it brightened my day by giving me that smile. Letting me know everything was going to be ok. Now, 7 yrs and 2 deployments later I still remember that big smile and the comfort that everything is still ok. May god bless your family and know that you will never be forgotten."
Sgt Michael W. Hawk of Fort Hood, Tx

"Joe, I didn't forget your memorial date, I was in Yakima Train Center at the time. I'm currently stationed @ Ft. Lewis Washington, 555th Engineer Brigade, 14th Engineer Battalion, 571st Sapper Co. Sure wish you could be here battle, I miss you and your jokes a lot. Talked to SFC Frank Johnson about 2 years ago... we had a breakdown over your loss on Schofield.. before I PCS'
D. Anyways just wanted to check in with you battle.. Take care."
SSG Mahoney of FT. Lewis

"I bow my head down in honor and remembrance of everything you did and gave, my brother. Your selfless service brings out the meaning and truthfulness of these words: "Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't
pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected,
and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset
years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like
in the United States where men were free." Quoted by our former President Ronald Regan during his presidency.
Rest in peace.
You are never forgotten. May God bless your family and friends with peace and joy. May you all have a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend."
SSgt. Paul Wilkerson of Chattanooga, TN

"When PFC Joseph Love first came to Hawaii, I was his team leader. A very bright and hard working soldier, full of smiles, life and love and adventure. I was his team leader but only for a short time. Soon thereafter the company was reorganized and he was moved to a new squad upon our deployment to Balad with the 84th ECB.
May you rest in peace Joseph. You are always remembered and never forgotten for your sacrifice."
SSgt. Paul Wilkerson of Chattanooga, TN

"I cannot beleive that it has been six years ago today and I still miss you as if it were the first.
Take care son
Love Dad"
Daniel Fowler of frozenfowler@yahoo.com

"Happy Birthday Joe. I cannot believe you would have been 28 today. I miss and love you so much.I still think about you quite often and wish we could still be able to do things together.There has been so many changes so much I would love to talk to you about but I know you are watching over us.
Love Always your sister,
Brittany Fowler"
akgirl2789@gmail.com of Albany Oregon

"I went by the cemetery on Monday to put roses on your grave site on my way back to oregon from visiting family. I miss you so much and still think about you often. I recently moved here to oregon in April decided I didn't like Arizona.I am still going to school decided to get my Medical Laboratory Science degree.I'm sure you are still watching over all of us and smiling.Couple years ago Dad told a speech when the family got together on April 9th and he said I remember when Brittany and Joe were fighting in the back seat and Brittany yelled and said Joe is smiling all over me lol cause you were he said I am sure Joe is still smiling all over you. I cried but I do miss the things we did. I love you with all my heart Joe and will always remember everything we did together.
Love your Sis,
Brittany Fowler"
Brittany Fowler akgirl2789@gmail.com of Albany, Oregon

"I cannot believe it has been five years since we lost you we will always remember you.There isn't a day that gos by that i dont think about you. I love and miss you. Love your sis Brittany"
Brittany Fowler of Surprise AZ akgirl2789@gmail.com

"I cannot begin to believe that it has been five years since we lost you. So much has changed (New brother and sister that will never know you) but one thing that will never change is how much we love and miss you son..."
Daniel Fowler of frozenfowler@yahoo.com

I am reminded of how you were taken from me 3 times a year; vetarans day, the date of your death and today, your birthday. I keep thinking that it will get easyer, but it doesn't. I miss you terribly.
Thankfully we had a lot of very good times and thinking of them helps me get through. I love you Joe and always, always will remember.
Love Dad"
Daniel Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska - frozenfowler@yahoo.com

"Happy Birthday Joe. Words cannot express how much I miss you. Its crazy to look back and see how much I have grown up over the years, I know you would be proud. There's still not a day that goes by that you don't cross my mind, but it isn't a bad thing. I remember the times that we would throw the football around in the back yard, it seemed like it could stay that way forever, just the smiles, jokes and laughs. Or the time you and I rode our bikes into town when you were back home visiting from basic, when we went and saw the movie The Island, I recently bought it, but I can't bring myself to watch it, but I remember how I complained nearly the whole way up the Steese Hwy, because I didn't want to keep going I was 'tired' but you made me, and I thank you for that. I know you're in a better place, and I just wanted to tell you happy birthday and that I love you."
Elizabeth Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

"Happy Birthday Joe. It does not seem like it has been almost five years. Alot has happened since you have been gone I am now moved away from Alaska and live in Arizona. It is kinda weird not having any family around but i am making it ok. I will graduate with my MLT in 15 months and I am planning on moving back to AK. I miss dad and everyone else too. I love you so much I just wanted to say Happy Birthday. I think about you often and still write in that journal you left me.I love you with all my heart.
Your little sis,
Brittany Fowler of El Mirage, AZ email brittany.fowler@bannerhealth.com

"Hey there Joe, I was just thinking about you. Wish you were here, man. The world was better with you in it."
Tom Hewitt of Fairbanks, Alaska

Its hard to believe that it has been over 4 years since they took your life. I know its not your birthday or even the anniversary of your death, but I can't stop thinking about you. Everyday I come across something that reminds me of you. For some reason tonight is really hard, I don't know if its the change of season, or if its because of some other reason, but despite the reason, I know that you know I'm thinking of you. I usually keep your dog tag hung over a picture of you in my room, but when I miss you a lot it goes around my neck, I even go and sit in "your" corner. Its a place in the house that dad set up, it has pictures of you, your medals, your tags, and the flag and bullet casings they gave us. I sit on the couch and the memories flood into my head. I call it your corner because its where I go to think and remember you. Its crazy that I am graduated from high school. I haven't started college yet, but will be in the spring. I know you're always here with me, no matter what I'm doing, some days I think you play jokes on me. I remember a couple of times this year when I was out on dates, the sun would shine, and I'd feel the warmth of it on my skin and think that it was you smiling down. It almost seemed like I had your approval, I also remember a day where it did the exact opposite and I felt like I didn't have that approval from you. I love you so much Joe, and I miss you everyday. I know I should be going to bed, but I don't think I can sleep tonight.
Love Always your little sister,
Elizabeth Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

"Joe tomorrow will have been four years since we lost you. I miss you so much.
I will be going to dad's like every year to get together with the family and friends for dinner. There is not a day that go's by that I do not think about you. I will never forget the times we had and I think about you everytime I go skating because thats one of the places we were last together. I love you with all my heart and will never forget you.
Love your sis,
Brittany Fowler
Brittany Fowler of Fairbanks, AK

"didn't really get to know you i was in alpha company after the deployment i ETS been thinking about coming back in is been 3 years. Your sacrafice will never be forgottton never daunted SPC LINDSAY 5th squad leads the way tlindsay8209@yahoo.com"
tim lindsay of mesa az

"Joe, I still remember going through basic with you, and then we got stationed in Hawaii, we were the only Sappers to get stuck in 84th, from the rest of the pack. You got put in B Co. with Nieman and I was in A Co. I remember Drill Sgt Wilken saying we would be in Iraq less than 6 months after basic.. he was right. I miss you alot bro, Im about to get SSGT, and going to Sapper school in May. Essayons!!"
SGT Mahoney of Schofield Barracks, Hawaii

"you would be 26 years old today if they hadn't taken your life. instead of what should be a celebration we suffer on missing you and what you might have been.
I love you son, thank you for the time you gave me."
Dan Fowler of frozenfowler@gmail.com

"Just thinking about you son, your birthday is fast appoaching, I miss you terribly. love Dad"
Dan Fowler // frozenfowler@gmail.com of Fairbanks, Alaska

"I never want to forget the sacrifices of so many young men and women. I am so proud it makes me cry. I understand in theory only that war is a part of human nature but so is love and caring. I wish I could take the families 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"
Scott E. Steiner of Worthington, OH

Today at work me and your sister Brit were thinking back to day that you and my son Danny were in a flooded car at chena hotsprings road. How funny that was. It seems like yesterday. Last week I came across some pictures of you and your sisters on my computer and I was sad but also blessed to have had you and your family in my life. You are always in my prayers. Your dog tags sit right on my dresser and I see them everyday."
Millie Castro of Fairbanks, Alaska

"'Joe I am still thinking about you every day. I miss you so much. I still go to the ice rink where you could always out skate me. You have a baby sister now. She is adorable. I try to go see them as often as I can but work kinda gets in the way. I am now working as a Phlebotomist and wish you were here to talk to. I love you so much and miss you.'
Love with all my heart,
Brittany Fowler
Brittany Fowler of Fairbanks, AK

"April 15, 2009
To the family of Pfc. Joseph I. Love:
Joseph gave the ultimate sacrifice and will be held in the hearts of Americans forever. I cannot and will not let our fallen heroes be forgotten. My deepest sympathy to you. "Some gave all."
Peggy Childers
"Don't Let The Memory Of Them Drift Away"
Peggy Childers of Carson City, NV

"Son, It's been 3 years now. some times it feels like forever and somtimes like yesterday. we had your memorial dinner amd the toast. I told the story about how you and your sister were in the back of the car that hot summer day amd how that she was just screaming her head off mad and how that when I asked her what was wrong she yelled that you were "smiling all over" her. when I looked back in the mirror that is exactly what you were doing, "smiling all over her", she was 5 years old then, she is 20 now and I told her that you are still smiling all over her, that was the toast with the crown you left us, "heres to Joe smiling all over all of us", I miss you deeply, Love Dad.
Dan Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

"To the Family of PVT Joseph Love", please contact me if at all possible. I am Formerly SSG Puu, the patrol leader who was directly in charge of PVT Love. puu684@yahoo.com"
Deutsch Pu'u of Fairfield, Ca

"I love you Joe, Just had a shot of the crown you left behind in rememberance of your birthday. I love you and miss you alway's. your baby brother is doing good. you have a sister on the way. wish you were here.... Dad"
frozenfowler@gmail.com of Fairbanks, Alaska

"Joe and I became friends in middle school nearly 11 years ago. He was a quiet and shy boy who never asked for anything and would rather talk about me instead of himself. A selfless person and a courageous spirit, Joe was the bestest friend I could ever ask for. I hadn't seen him since middle school, and we were going to see each other in August 2006. I spoke to him two days before this senseless tragedy happened and a piece of my heart will forever be broken. I miss him dearly.

It's been a long time since I last got to hear your voice. I kept a copy of the last chat conversation we had together and I miss you so very much. It is obvious that no matter where you went, you made good friends. You are loved by many and missed by everyone. Your smiling face and sweet spirit will never be forgotten. Friends forever and always, I will always keep you in my heart."
Lisa S. Nelson of San Ramon, CA USA

its been two years...
the tatoo on my arm in rememberance of you will always make me remember... and i tell your story to everyone i know...
i lit my first and only cigar for you on the ninth...
a special day... to remember a fallen brother...
you will always live close to my heart and never die...
you will never be forgotten bud..."
Spc. Beau Hurd of Camp Taji Iraq

"Joe it has been two years as of yesterday I still miss you deeply and wish this was still all a dream. There isn't a day that go's by that I do not think about you. You will always be remebered by all of us.
love always, your sister,
Brittany Fowler"
Brittany Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

I'ts been 2 years now and the pain of missing you is still fresh. You have a baby brother now, his name is Jamin "Joseph" Fowler (after you), I wish you had a chance to meet him. God willing I will teach him to play your guitar. tonight everyone will be over at the house in rememberance of you, I have refilled that bottle of crown that you bought and we will toast your memory again. take care son and know I love you.
Dad (Dan Fowler, frozenfowler@yahoo.com)"
Dan Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

Dude your missed so much I cant believe its almost been 2 years. Im gonna be trying to go to New Zealand in Dec. Just like we talked bout doing together. RIP Brother."
Sgt. Beltran 84th of Buffalo NY

"Hey buddy love,
It was nice serving with you while stationed In hawaii.. The bad thing was it sucked losing you on that horrible day, not only as a brother in arms but as a friend. I just want to let you know that the person that thought could take your life that day didn't live to see his next day. I hope that you are doing good up there and that god is looking over your family.. And to the family and friends of Joseph I. Love I want to say that it should of been me instead of joe.. I was in that convoy and was the vehicle in front of him.. I just want to say that his killer was brought to justice...."
Spc. Jason D. Hodson of Ft. Leonardwood, MO

"Joseph and i went to highschool together and lost touch after i moved away, I am just now finding out the news about him and it breaks my heart so bad, i was just searching and searching to find him and then i hear this, my heart goes out to his family. Joseph was a great guy, brave, sweet and caring and he will never be forgotten along with every other soldier who puts there life out on the line for us. I will always support our troops. God Bless!"
Kara Mangum of Gainesville, Georgia

"Joe I think about you every day and I miss you alot. I also remember iceskating with you and biking on that two weeks of leave you had after basic those were the last days I spent with you. I remember when we talked on the computer while you were over in Iraq and remember waiting for you to get on so I could talk to you. I love you and miss you with all my heart.
Love your other little sister,
Brittany Fowler of Fairbanks, AK

"From one LOVE family to another...
Although we may not be biologically related, we are related because both of our sons fought or are currently fighting for our country. Mine is a Cpl. in the United States Marine Corp...presently deployed. You and yours are in our prayers. Thank you for the gift of your son and for his gift to our country. Forever remembered."
Cindy Love of Lock Haven, PA USA

"joe i am just letting you know that you are still in the hearts of the ones that were there with you. i know you would like the tribute they are building for you. i know i barely knew but you are still my brother and i think about you often.... rest in peace brother!"

"Joey, I was thinking about you today...well not just today but everyday...I miss you so much but I know that we will meet again...I remember all the fun times we had and sometime wish we had more memories it seems like we should have had more...maybe we have more than what I remember... I miss you a lot Joe...Love Your Little Sister,
Liz Fowler of Fairbanks Ak

"Joe, we all miss you and I think about you frequently. I'm glad we got to do that thing at Wally's before you took off; I never thought you'd never come back. Carl has a big photo of you hanging on his wall and every year in April we get together with Dan and the girls and take a memorial shot from that bottle of Crown Royal that you left."
Victor Johanson of Fairbanks, Alaska

"Jo and me met in Fort leonard wood MI...
i met him at reception... jo, dan and me all became fast friends... we faced trials of a new world together.. we made it through by making bonds that are impossible to break... entering a new world of discipline and honor... we were put through some tough *... but we made it through together... we graduation time came we all went our seprate ways... me and jo went to hawaii and dan left for fort bragg... we ate chinese with mark at replacement and played video games all day.... a new world... a new kind of family... we all chilled together until we deployed... the every day walking to the PX to get some grub... playing video games in the dark... and going to the beach and havin a blast all came to an end... it was time for us to go... last i saw jo was in kuwait... we held our heads up high and were prepared for the worse... we said our dues and were sure to meet up once its all over... we went west... while he went east.... we both were doing our things... preparing for the worse... hoping for the best...
one cold morning... i was coming back to base... got the word someone got hurt.. it darkened my soul and left me ablanc when i found out what had happened... my day was blurry... but me brent and mark all went out and bought some cigars for the one we lost... remeniced in the days we had... said a prayer... and kept our heads high... every day i remember.. every day i thank the lord... every day i talk to jo... like his spirit never left this world... as i face things that we went through i remember the comfort embrace of his prencense.. his eagerness to do something bigger and better... we never gave up on each other.. and i will never forget... the one that we lost... in body... but not in spirit... i got a tatoo in his honor... my very first for the one I love. he gave his life... he fought honorably... and smiled through the roughest times... he will always remain to be in my heart... in my mind and in my soul...
for his family... i feel your pain... and am here if you ever need anything...
SPC. Hurd, Beau
84th ECB (H)"
SPC Hurd of Schofield Barracks HI


My name is Dedi Noble. I am the mother of Sgt. Charles E. Matheny IV, KIA in Sadr City, Iraq, 2/18/06. My Charlie is buried just a little ways from PFC. Joseph I. Love. I found his grave a couple of weeks ago as the Washington State Gold Star Mother's group was looking to locate the families of the fallen buried in Tahoma National Cemetery. My son Charlie, graduated from Arlington High School (Washington St) in 2000. He ran around with several of the Love Isreal boys from this area. I was wondering if there is a connection. The real reason I am writing is I would very much like to make contact with his family (MOM). Please if you know her, or his family let them know that his grave is being tended to by the Washington State Gold Star Moms. We are all so sorry for you loss and apologize for the delay in finding you. dnoblesr@hotmail.com"
Dedi Noble of Camano Island, WA

"Joe, as I was going through your things yesterday I was reminded of all the good times that we had and also of all the times that we missed out on now that you are not here. take care son, I miss you deeply. love Dad
Dan Fowler of Fairbanks, Alaska

"Love, We just want you to know that we are honored to have met you and worked with you in the 84th. Thank you for everything you have done. We miss you."
Shannon Bragg and David Keenum of Dallas, Tx

"A year has passed and you are missed so much. Rest in peace."

"To the family of:Joseph I. Love 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"

"8/8/06 Joseph please rest in peace. You have earned it."

"PFC Joseph Love, you are not forgotten and we all miss you !!"
Sgt. Keaton of Balad, Iraq

"I cannot express the deepest sadness that I feel for the family. Words are too much at this point."
Shandra O'Haleck of Shelton, Washington/USA

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

"Thank you Joseph Love, 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 Pfc. Joseph Love:
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 Joseph 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 Pfc. Joseph Love:
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 Joseph, 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