Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Staff Sgt. Esau G. Patterson, Jr.

25, of Ridgeland, South Carolina.
Patterson died in Baghdad, Iraq, when a vehicle approached his unit and the driver detonated a bomb. He was assigned to 4th Battalion, 27th Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany. Died on April 29, 2004.

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"I will have the privilege of honoring Esau Patterson during the 2016 South Carolina Run for the Fallen. Thank you for your service and sacrifice. You are not forgotten.
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The run is scheduled for November 5-6, 2016. This particular run showcases teams of volunteer runners to complete segments of a 120 mile run to honor every South Carolina service member who has died since September 11, 2001. We will be culminating this event with a 5K memorial run through downtown Columbia ending at the State House for a short ceremony. Each mile of the run is dedicated to a fallen South Carolina Hero. The run team stops at every mile marker where they present an American Flag and a biographical card in honor of a fallen service member in an effort to create a 120 mile memorial trail through South Carolina. http://www.scrunforthefallen.org/"
Michael Beaudet of Sumter SC

"Chief your the best i ever had!! You were allways there!! RIP my man and I will NEVER FORGET what we been through! I have been thankful for ever knowing such a wonderful man!! :)"
Shawn E. Jensen of Rock Springs, Wyoming 82901

"To the family of:Esau G. Patterson
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""

"To the family of Esau. My brother James Becktrand was in Esau's unit when Esau was taken from you and James was taken from us. We think of Jim always along with Esau and the other 6 soldiers, Ryan C., Norman, Justin, Jeremy, Jeffrey and Ryan R.We always smile knowing that the 8 of these amazing men are around us 24/7 for their job of protecting us has now gone from the war but to eternity. God Bless your family...
lucy.lu75@yahoo.com"
Lucy Mejia of Anahiem, CA/USA

"April 16, 2009
To the family of Staff Sgt. Esau G. Patterson, Jr.:
Esau 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

"SSG Patterson",

Just paying you the respect you deserve you made me proud that I served. You were so caring for others you will always be remembered. Your words of wisdom will also always be remembered. God Bless You Forever and Always

"Iron Thunder"
Stubbs of Rochester,NY

"Not only were you a outstanding NCO you were one of the greatest preson that I have ever met. RIP my brother"
SSG Ivan T. Dover of Gaffney, South Carolina

"I was Esau's English teacher his senior year at Jasper County High. Esau was a great student and a fantastic person. To his friends he was loyal and unwavering. I will remember him always, and his family will stay in my prayers."
Mrs. C. Gantt of Garden's Corner, SC

"I was in A 1/10 FA in Benning from 99 - 02. Esau carried such positive energy. He was a fine soldier, role model, and a leader. He was my brother in Christ and kept me strong. I'll never forget him. His tragic death occurred on my birthday. I still think about him often (today is 9-30-06). He and Angelo Johnson were absolutely incredible runners during our PT tests. I was honored to be a groomsman in his wedding. To Esau's family and Angelo Johnson's family: I am still praying and thinking about you. My telephone number is 307-760-3545."
Joey Sullivan of Laramie, Wyoming

"I was the FDO with Esau in Germany when we first deployed to Baghdad. He always kept me in light spirits and was always cracking jokes and talking about sports to help keep our minds off the madness. He always kept his soldiers minds on their mission and kept them safe. Esau was such a great person and a caring individual. He always had a smile on his face...even after yelling at soldiers...and you knew he was just doing his job.

To his family:...Thank you for allowing me to get to know him...

To Esau...I will never forget you brother...your memory will forever live on..."
Sean Gilfillan of Providence, RI

"Two years now brother....still in my mind...everyday....thinking of you down here...watchin us from up there...memory's gonna be always in my heart. Thanks again."
SGT Francisco of Vermillion SD

"Family of Staff Sgt. Patterson,
My name is Alicia Reed and my husband PFC Ryan Reed was KIA the same day as your family member, for the same cause. I would like to give my condolences. It has been nearly two years since that awful day and I will NEVER forget the sacrafice each soldier made. It is very hard to get through these times but I am thankful that this country has family members like yours. He is a hero.
Bless You"
Alicia Reed of Colorado Springs, CO

"To the Family of SSG Esau "Patty" Patterson,
I am so proud to have served with Patty. For so long he had been my best friend at Thunder FOB in Iraq. When we lost him, we lost a leader, an oustanding NCO, and a brother in the truest form of the word. He will always be missed by the soldiers who knew him. COBRAS!!"
CPL T. Bullard of C 4-27

"Thunder FOB 7

don't even know how well you knew me then or if you remember me now. But you were the enforcer and scapegoat for all of us when something went wrong on Thunder FOB. You took the blame and kept it with you, the true mark of a professional. You kept the peace and made sure we weren't speeding. Like everything else, you took that in stride and kept your cool. I didn't know you well and will never pretend to, but what you gave, I could never repay. nor can any of the soldiers that were left behind when you left. None of us will ever forget you or forget your sacrifice. You are the Truest of Patriots no one can ever take that from you. Thank you SSG Pat, you will be remembered forever by America and by me"
SGT Raymond H Smith of Sioux Falls, SD USA

"This is Jack Lawrence III.I grew up with Esau and known him a long time. The news of your passing hurt everyone in the Class of 1996. Sorry we fell out of touch after high school and we just kept missing each other in the military. Your father said he is proud of you and so am I. So from me,Cory,Blast,Chuck and everyone who from the class of 1996 and JCHS who served and continue you to serve, you will forever be a hero to us. Thank you for being a friend to us all.We miss you EJ ."
SGT. JACK lAWRENCE III of STILL IN IRAQ(RIDGELAND,SC)

""to the family of SSG Esau Patterson"
SSG Patterson was one of the leaders in my squad while i was assigned to A Battery 1/10 FIELD ARTILLERY, FT. BENNING GA.. I STILL REMEMBER WHEN HE TOOK ME TO GET MY FIRST DRIVER LICENSE. HE WAS THE ONLY ONE WHO HAD FAITH IN ME AND HE MADE ME DRIVER TO THE DMV BECAUSE I DIDN'T BELIEVE IN MYSELF. HE ALSO WAS A GREAT NCO,ROLE MODEL, AND VERY UPLIFTING FIGURE IN ME AND EVERYONE WHO CAME IN CONTACT WITH HIM. HE WAS ONE OF THE KEY FACTOR IN THE CHANGE OF MY LIFE AND HE WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTING AND HE ALWAYS BE IN MY HEART AT " ON THE BATTLE FIELD" AND " IN GARRISON". I'M CURRENTLY IN IRAQ ON ASSIGNMENT AND I WANT YOU TO KNOW THAT HE PASSED OVER FOR WHAT US AMERICAN TAKE FOR GRANTED EVERYDAY AND THAT'S FREEDOM. BE PROUD, STAY STRONG, AND REMEMBER NOW HE AS FREE AS HE WILL EVER BE FROM PAIN, HATE, JEALOUSY, ENVY, AND DEATH, BECAUSE HE BELIEVED IN GOD AND I KNOW THAT. "GOD BLESS YOU" FROM SGT BIGSBY 372ND TRANS. CO. LTF 129 APO AE 09391"
CORY J. BIGSBY of BALAD, IRAQ

"To the Family of Esau G. Patterson. My name is Sgt Nasir Ali and Patterson & I were room-mates in A 3/7th Field Artillery. He was a very close friend of mines and he really understood the concept of friendship and looking out for his fellow soldiers. We've had alot of great times together. I remember the day we bought our cars (I had bought a chevy and he bought a blue Probe). And I still remember the moment when we both got saved. He became a Good Christian and I converted to Islam, but regardless of our religious differences, we still respected each other. Patterson will truly be missed...
Sgt Ali"
Nasir Ali of Ft. Campbell, Kentucky

"Your loved one was remembered on 27 May 2005 in Bicentennial Memorial Chapel General Protestant Worship Service in Fort Gordon, GA. His life and your sacrifice are not forgotten. Thank you. We are praying for you.
Chaplain (Major) Alva Ray Bennett"

"I am wearing a Hero bracelet with SSgt. Patterson's name on it. My prayers go to his loved ones, my thanks to him for his service."
Joe Robinson of Honea Path, SC

"SSG Patterson I miss you brother you and I looked out for each other alot out there, I still remember when you found out I got hit that night your face and compassion and fear when I came back meant alot to me always know as you look on us now I would trade my life for yours I'm still your "DOC", your medic, you guys are my family I will always be your family. To your immediate family, he is the most bravest man I've known he is one of my friends that kept me sane over there he's my hero if you ever need to talk let me know.

Mahalo"
SGT Edward "DOC" Wittig Jr. of Baumholder Ge

"this message is to one person who motivated me and as far as i know was the most dedicated soldier i've ever known. i'll always remember you. i still have pics of you from ft. benning. you can rest assure that you made spc. sanchez a proud soldier. i know that you are not dead ssg patterson because your spirit will always live with us. thanks for your teachings, thanks for the laughter, thanks for being the best section chief and most important of all thanks for pushing me to the limit and being a friend.

i will always miss you."
Yohan C. Sanchez of Bronx, New York

"SSGPatterson, You are and always will be a friend of mine and an insperation to me. I was with SSG Patterson in Iraq and worked with him many times. I will never forget you and all that you taught me. You are truly my hero and friend. I miss you Pat, Sgt Brandon Roe"
SGT Brandon Roe of Baumholder, Germany

"To the Patterson Family:

My name is SSG Troy O. Lewis I joined the army with Esau and went through Basic Training and AIT (OSUT) at FT. Sill Oklahoma with Him D 1/19 FA. I know Esau very well. We both started are Military careers in Aug of 96 he was in 3rd platoon Hellraiser and I was in 1st platoon Mad Dogs. Even through basic training and AIT, Esau excelled in being a leader, and held the position of squad leader for an extended period!! We graduated basic and AIT in Nov of 96 and there was a big group of us that new we were going to hawaii!!!!! I remember all the other guys would say that I was stupid because I told them that I was going home to get married before going to hawaii, but Pat (wich is what we nick named him) told me if I loved her to go ahead and do it!!! And I did!! Dec 17 of 96, there we were at 25th replacement a big bunch of arty guys just kickin it in hawaii!! Wandering how the real army was going to be, after leaving AIT!! After in processing I got assigned to A 1/8 FA and pat got assigned to A 3/7 FA! Even though we were in seperate battalions me and pat always use to hang out and play basket ball in the quad!! I even remember when Pat got his blue ford probe and we use to make fun of him and say it was purple!!! He hated that.LOL. Me and patt always use to chill, and then one day it just stopped!! We started to see less and less of each other. I was married and had a kid so I wasnt able to go out as much!! Then 1/8 deactivated in SEP of 97 and I had been reassigned to the 25th FA Det (TA). I started to inquire about pat with some of my other friends who had been re assigned to A Btry 3/7 FA and they all told me that pat had changed! I didnt understand what they were talking about! About a year later I made E-5 and had gotten reassinged to A btry 3/7 FA. One of the first people to come up and welcome me was pat, and after talking with him for a couple of minutes, I finally realized what everyone was talking about! Pat had become a man of God, he had gotten saved! He did not swear no more, he did not go to the clubs no more, he was always doing some church functions or volunteer work!!! I admired him for that!! Pat told me that he was proud of me for making E-5 and that he was promotable too! Pats section chief back then was SSG Willie Jones and mine was SSG Calvin Teemer!! Man we had some great times, and some tuff ones too!! I was there that day when pat almost lost his finger in the breech of the Howitzer, yeah they had to take hime to the hospital for that, but he never forgot to use the safety key after that !!! 3 yrs had gone by in hawaii and both me and pat had came down on orders to go to Ft. Benning. However I had diff plans I decided that I was going to reclass into the MI Branch. I told pat about this and he tried to convince me to stay artillery. He said that the artillery branch needs NCO's like him and I. I told him that they needed him not me that it was time for something diff for me. Pat wished me the best of luck and told me that are paths would cross again later in our military careers and I think they would have, however his path got cut short!!!

To the Patterson family:
My condolensces, pat was a true hero, and the military lost a fine NCO and a Leader. I lost a good friend!!

To Esau G. Patterson Jr.:
We miss you bro, dont ever forget the moto!!

NEVER BROKEN!!!"
Troy O. Lewis of FT. Hood, TX

"I had the pleasure to evaluate this HIGH SPEED SOLDIER during Section Evals, as I was just getting to the Battalion. SSG Patterson was on his way to Germany. I know this soldier was performing his duties to the fullest of his capabilities. God bless this fallen soldier and his family."
Smoke Whitfield of Camp Shelby Mississippi

"SSG Patterson, you have been an inspiration to me and my men (OUR men). I cannot thank you enough for all you've done for us. You have always been there to lift our spirits and dry our eyes, and for that and much more we thank you. If I could've been there to take your place, please believe I would've been. You were a great leader, and a great friend. We all love and miss you."
4th Battalion, 27th Field Artillery of Baumholder, Germany

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

"TO THE FAMILY AND LOVE ONES OF ESAU PATTERSON. THIS IS TRULY A GREAT LOST TO THE WORLD. ESAU WAS A GREAT AMERICAN WHO I HAD THE PLEASURE OF SERVING WITH AT SCHOFIELD BARRACK, HAWAII. I WAS HIS SECTION CHIEF. ME AND ESAU HAD MANY GREAT TALKS. I WILL TRULY MISS HIM. TO HIS FAMILY AND FRIENDS MY HEART GO OUT TO YOU ALL.... HE WAS MY HERO."
MSG ANTHONY POWELL of SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA (916) 278-3621

"To the Family & Friends of Staff Sgt. Esau G. Patterson, Jr.

I know your grief and deep loss as my son Spc. Justin B. Schmidt also died along side your husband and loved one. May God Bless and keep you in his heart today and always."
Lenore C. Roberts, mother of SPC Justin B. Schmidt of Bagley, MN

""I'm truly saddened by your loss, though i did not know Esau personally. I was there on site once it happened, it makes you feel like you knew him. I was completely shocked. Everyday i think of those soldiers that made the ultimate sacrifice, and then i think of you. Even though we maybe be strangers you're in my thoughts and prayers. God Bless mfrancis@usd.edu""
Spc. Mark Francisco of Estelline SD

"To Esau's Family and Friends:

On behalf of the Blanco-Caldas family, we send our sincerest condolences. We share the same loss ... the same pain. Our prayers are with you in this most difficult time and we thank you for his bravery and sacrifice.

Sincerely,

The Family of Capt. Ernesto M. Blanco-Caldas, 82nd Airborne, KIA Iraq 12/28/2003.

Gloria Caldas (his mom) of San Antonio, TX"
gloria.caldas@banksterling.com

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

"To Esau's Family:
There are no words to express the sorrow we feel for your loss. May God bless you and help you through this time."
Dan and Meg Manninen of San Antonio, Texas

"Thank you Esau Patterson, Jr., 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 Staff Sgt. Esau Patterson, Jr.:
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 Esau 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 Staff Sgt. Esau Patterson, Jr.:
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 Esau, 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