Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Spc. Michael J. Wendling

20, of Mayville, Wisconsin.
Wendling died in Shaibah, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near his HMMWV during convoy operations. He was assigned to the Army National Guard's 2nd Battalion, 127th Infantry Regiment, 32nd Infantry Brigade, Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Died on September 26, 2005.

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"To the family of: Michael J. Wendling
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""

"Will never forget you or the time serving with you. Still think of that day a lot"
derksen of waupun, wi

"You are always watching over us, god bless you..."
Josh of Madison

"In my eyes Michael Wendling is a true hero and my heart goes out to his family for their loss. I dont think any of us will forget those moments with him at Ft. Benning GA... Big Dogs 4 life."
Eric P. Wessner of Topton, Pa/USA

"Bill and I are thinking of you today and pray that your grief is lessoned. You are in our thoughts and prayers."
Patricia Berlin of Ann Arbor

"I trained with Michael in 2002 for infantry boot camp, and 2003 for AIT in Ft. Benning, Ga. with all those drill sergeants that worked us in so hard those blistering months going through the toughest experiences we ever imagined. Nearly our whole company was composed of National Guardsmen from different states around the country of which we would all go our separate ways when the training was completed. But during those arduous, hot, summer months there in Georgia, we were inseparable. We literally had to do everything together, whether we liked it or not, and we relied on each other to make it though to graduation. I was one of older ones in the group, with most of my platoon buddies still finishing up their last year of high school. I will say that I wasn’t the most organized of soldiers, and during those excruciating times in that place they called Hell’s Kitchen, I certainly suffered at the hands of those drill sergeants.
There was a boy who was kinda quiet, but really good at PT. This guy from Wisconsin had seen me struggling not to get myself (and everyone else) in trouble all the time, and when he had finished squaring his own things away before first formation, he would help me to make my bed in the morning. I remember him helping me fold my clothes into my draws so we wouldn’t have to get punished when the drill sergeants made their inspections. I remember him fastening a button on my BDU top and pulling the collar out from being tucked under my neck so I wouldn’t get yelled at during formation. I remember him reaching his arm out to me to pull me from the mud during an obstacle course... I remember his laugh.
He was 20 years old when an IED in a village called Shaibah blew up his Humvee.
He was my friend; I miss him, and I will remember for the rest of my life.

Spc. Patrick A Romano
29th ID 116 INF Afghanistan Vet
National Guardsmen 2002-2008"
SPC Romano of SW. Virginia

"August 22, 2008
To the family of Spc. Michael J. Wendling:
Michael 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

"hello, i went to basic training with micheal and his pal roskoff, they would always hang around each other, the best thing i remember about him is his big smile and his humored defiance to drill sgt mills on graduation day over wearing those ugly army glasses we had to wear. We spent 9 weeks at basic in ft benning and later seen each other while training at camp douglas. the day i found out about his death i was at work and was emotionally devastated. my prayers to the wendling family"
Justin D of Fond du lac wi

"My son's name is Michael John Wendling
and my heart skipped a beat to see his name on the screen. A sadness overcome me. God Bless Michael and his family."
Alba of Wendling

"To the Family of SPC Michael Wendling:
We have constructed a memorial to the service men and women from Wisconsin and Illinois who have died in Iraq. Our memorial includes, as of 8/28/06, 162 crosses and Stars of David. We would like your permission to put Michael's name on one of them. We have called our display "Arlington MidWest." It is our expression of mourning for the indescribable loss you have suffered for our country.

If you would like us to do this, please email me at arlingtonmidwest@yahoo.com.

We invite you to come to visit Arlington MidWest if you can. A friend has put us up on his website so you can see the memorial here:
www.williamgbecker.com/ArlingtonMidwest.html.

"As long as we live, they too will live;
for they are now a part of us, as we remember them.""
Marty Preston of Wisconsin Dells, WI

"Mike was and always will be my best friend, and now he gone. but i know he would love it for me to lead a good life and keep a close on the love of his life. So many memories come to me just thinking of him. We made a good run. I love you like a brother and the only wish i have is that you would have been able to come home and go golfing one last time."
Aaron Borst of Mayville WI

"my name is Cassidy and i am a volunteer for the Illinois Motorcycle Freedom Run. We are a group of people that have built a memorial wall in Marsielles Illinois for all the fallen soldiers in Mideast conflicts since Beriut. Your loved one's name will be permenently added to this wall. For any further information visit our website www.ilfreedomrun.org please e-mail me at me1196@aol.com to let me know that you have recived this message. If you decide to come to this memorial on June 19th, 2006, you will recieve VIP seating and treatment for the cermonies that day. ALL OUR WELCOMING TO HONOR OUR FALLEN SOLDIERS
**Cassidy"
Cassidy of Brookfield/ILL/red,white,blue

"Like others that have left messages... my name is Michael Wendling and I came across this site doing a search on my name. I thank the family of Michael, and all the families of our fallen heroes, for his and their service and sacrifice."
Michael L. Wendling of Cincinnati, Ohio

"The report of young Micahel's death on CBS struck me because my name too is Wendling. God be with you in your grief."
Ronald C. Wendling of Havertown, PA USA

"From time to time I will "google" my name. (Michael Jerome Wendling) I did so recently on my birthday Oct 26th (1973). It really struck me that I was celebrating a birthday and a HERO with the same name had fallen. I just want the family to know I am the son of a Navy Captain, I respect the military very much and I honor Michael's service. I have NO DOUBT that history will look upon his sacrifice as truly saving freedom, I am sorry for your loss. War is a tragic reality but, it is the death of our HEROS that allows the rest of us to live in peace."
Michael J. Wendling II of Occoquan, Va U.S.A.

"From time to time I will "google" my name. (Michael Jerome Wendling) I did so recently on my birthday Oct 26th (1973). It really struck me that I was celebrating a birthday and a HERO with the same name had fallen. I just want the family to know I am the son of a Navy Captain, I respect the military very much and I honor Michael's service. I have NO DOUBT that history will look upon his sacrifice as truly saving freedom, I am sorry for your loss. War is a tragic reality but, it is the death of our HEROS that allows the rest of us to live in peace."
Michael J. Wendling II of Occoquan, Va U.S.A.

"Going through high school with Goat was a great time. Now that he is gone is almost unreal. You take life for granted, and the next thing you know one of your friends is gone. I have lost friends before, but its so much different being in the Air Force and losing a friend from back home; a friend that joined the Army and was serving so proud in Iraq. I will remember Goat for the fun times we had; playing football, basketball, baseball. I miss you Mike."
SrA Andrew Stapelfeldt of Fairchild AFB, WA USA

"Although I had only one chance to meet Goat, I knew he had what it took to be an American soldier. I met him during happy times and I had a blast partying with him, Kels, Jer, Alena, Matt, and Nate. My thoughts and prayers are with the family of Michael Wendling."
Kimberly Bodoh of White Lake, WI

"I did not know Michael but I have a loved one who is a part of the Wisconsin National Guards 32nd BDE and is currently training for their deployment to the middle east next month -- the loss was felt by all and he will never be forgotten. He will forever be a hero and for that I am grateful.

My thoughts and prayers are with the loved ones of Michael and the the rest of the 2/127 during this difficult time.

Thank you for your sacrafice and may God Bless You all!"
A Proud Army Girlfriend of Kenosha, WI

"TO THE WENDLING FAMILY FROM THE WAHL FAMILY. WE LOST OUR SON LAST YEAR IN BALAD. IRAQ. MY TEARS NEVER STOPPED FOR GREGORY, CONTNUED WITH ALL OUR FALLEN SOLDIERS. AS IT DOES FOR MICHAEL. ALL MILITARY BROTHERS ANSWERING THE CALL TO SERVE TOGETHER FOR OUR COUNTRY. MICHAEL NEVER WORRIED OVER GREGORY. THANKS TO MEN LIKE YOU MICHAEL. FO I KNEW YOU ALL HAD ONE ANOTHER COVERED. YOU ARE A HERO! YOU HAVE TOUCHED THE HEARTS OF SO MANY. MICHAEL THOSE YOU HAVE WILL NEVER EVER FORGET YOU, EVER. TO YOUR FAMILY REACH OUT TO YOUR POLITICAL LEADERS. REQUEST A STREERT TO BE DECIATED TO MICHAEL. SO ALL IN THE COMMUNITY WILL NEVER FORGET ALL MICHAEL DID FOR HIS COMMUNITY, STATE AND COUNTRY. GOD BLESS!"
LEONARD WAHL of VALLEY STREAM NY

"To the family of "Goat"

I greive with you in the death of your son and am saddened by the loss of him, as i know many of us are. As a soldier and fellow student who knew him from high school at mayville it hits home for me and others because we never thought something so tragic could happen to him or any of us. I was not the closest of friends to him but what i did know of him he was a good kid and soldier and wish i could have got to know him better. Im so sorry for your loss and will be thinking of him and your family in hard times such as this."
PFC TINSLEY, DUSTIN G. of FORT RICHARDSON ALASKA, USA

"Michael will forever be in our hearts. God's blessings to you and your family. He will not be forgotten."
Candy of Poynette, WI

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

"Thank you Michael Wendling, 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. Michael Wendling:
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 Michael 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. Michael Wendling:
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 Michael, 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