Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Sgt. David T. Friedrich

26, of Hammond, New York.
Friedrich was killed in a mortar attack in Abu Gareeb, Iraq. He was assigned to B Company, 325th Military Intelligence Battalion, U.S. Army Reserve, Waterbury, Connecticut. Died on September 20, 2003.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Army Sgt. David T. Friedrich.


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"5/5/21 Des Plaines, Il
We met the first time that day. I already knew your name though because the other Soldiers in your unit had so many great things to say about you. I was supposed to be in that tent that evening, would I have been in heaven with you or instead of you? I remember Col. Pappas trying to put in an emergency call because maybe he thought he could order that damned mortar back into the sky. A lot of people live great lives because of you, myself included. I’m proud to have met you that day."
Cody of Des Plaines, Il

I would just like to say thank you to you and the other soldier who was also killed in that attack for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.."
Mike Casey of El Paso, Texas

"Travis, you died to soon. I still remember the weather the day you died, It sucked and was sandy in Iraq like normal. Still think of you and other people that past away in Iraq. we were never friends in school but we shared the same sand and that is enough for me. Still remember the ones that didn't come back and thanks for paying the ultimate price for soldiers like me could come back, Thanks,"
Gary Durham of Louisville KY

"I sit here today getting ready to retire from the armed forces after 23 years. In that time there is one day more then any other that will stay with me forever. I was assigned to the military police unit at the prison and didn't really know you but I will never forget you. I stood over you as you took your last breaths while the medics did everything they could for you. Every year on that day since I look to the heavens and ask you "how am I doing, am I serving and living my life to the fullest, am I making you proud?" As I serve my last few months in the service I want to say thank you and I will forever live to honor you."

"I remember you today"

I will never stop missing you. I can't believe it has been eleven years. So many of us love you so much still. 9/20/14."
Mom of Belhaven, NC

"I love you"

"I just watched the last truck in the last U.S. convoy leave Iraqi soil and cross the border into Kuwait. Fittingly, it was an MRAP.

It's hard to be happy about it. I've dedicated the last ten years of my career to that very moment; the gate loudly slammed shut, which brought a bit of finality and closure, but it'll never bring back America's best and brightest.

Godspeed, my friend."
Rob Davis of Augusta, Ga.

"Travis, we have never met but we enjoy knowing your Mom and your Dad. What special people. As I read through all these messages my heart broke for them. I can't imagine their loss. How do they put one foot in front of the other...but they do. How do they live with this every day...but they do. They live, they laugh, and they love. You are a sound reflection of them...I can tell you touched many lives just as they did and do…and reflect their life, laughs and loves. We have lost so many fine young men and women who answered the call. Thank you! As I said, we never met but after today you will always be a part of us. Never having met you is our great loss."
Georgie's Sports & Oyster Bar of Belhaven, NC

"I appreciate your service to protect my freedom in the country I live in. The ultimate sacrice one man must make to better the lives of all, is immeasurable. I can only hope that your dedication will instill a lifetime of values into generations to come. The ultimate sacrice is too much to pay. .. I thank you
Doug Stewart"
Doug Stewart of Hampton, ct

"Today we held our annual Veterans Day Ceremony. We had a full color guard, a guest speaker, SFC Roy Mitchell, music and a slide show from family members of our staff and student body. We dedicated the program to you Travis. You are often in our thoughts and our ceremony today was to honor and pay tribute to you."
Lauren of New York

"I ran a race yesterday… thought of you during it, and the days before it. Around the eight mile mark a soldier was handing out flags. I finished the race with you in my mind and a small token of gratitude for you raised in the air. I did not raise that flag for this country, though I am grateful for it, but for you and the sacrifice that you paid and the sacrifice of all of those who love you pay everyday. Thank you again for being my friend, and now finishing one more race with me."
Ben of NY

"Well Travis, it took almost 10 years but they finally got Bin Ladin. Last night was a night of celebration around our great country. We are so pround of you. I know the current events don't heal the heartache your family has suffered but I hope it brings them a small speck of peace. Rest in peace, my friend. I can still see your smile today."
A Brockport team mate

"Thinking of you today, Travis. Not sure if it's because of the current events in the world today or just because it's a beautiful spring day that you should be enjoying, but I was flooded with memories of you today. So sad that such a sweet, genuine, brilliant man was taken from us. Much love to your family and hope that they find peace."
Sara Primerano of Liverpool, NY

"Happy Birthday, Son!"
Dave Friedrich of Vero Beach

"I only got to meet you two days before your death. We were assigned to do a detail together. I was not very nice to you, I did not know you. I finally had the courage today to look you up, since I only remembered your face. I struggle with the memories of what happened to you. My heart goes out to the family. God Bless you."
Sonia of Manati, PR

"Missing you today, as every day, but with a greater sense of sadness and a bigger knot in my gut than on the other days. Angrier today than the others for being forced to remember you on a date that I hate. I like remembering good things about you, happy memories and funny stories, on dates like 3/10 or 12/25, but not on 9/20. But this date forces me to contemplate an event of inexplicable tragedy, horrific and incomprehensible in its violence and finality. This date makes me question this life and all the events that led to that moment, and what could have been done to change it, so that you were not there. What if I had been there to answer the phone when you called to ask if you should join the army? Instead of returning your call the next day to tell you, "no, dummy, just take out loans like everyone else" only to hear it was too late, you had signed up the day before? Well, awkward silence, we both laughed, "It's not like there's going to be a war or anything anyway."

Or what if we had gotten married, even though we were too young and unprepared? We might have been young and foolish, but at least we'd both be here now. What if you hadn't been forced to work outside in a tent within range of guys who blast mortars out of the back of their trucks and shoot them over prison walls? What if someone determined it would be safer inside? What a hard lesson learned. I know it is futile to think about such things but I can't help it today.

Over a year ago, upon learning it was one of your dad's favorite books and you had almost been named Rufus, I started to read James Agee's "A Death in the Family." I couldn't get through it though; I couldn't deal with the tension...the waiting...the suspense. I forced myself to read it this year on 9/11 to prepare for this day. Of course I was hoping for a happy resolution that never comes. Feeling so much sadness and anger this year...

But I looked through all your old pictures and letters this morning, which brought lots of laughter, smiles, and tears. I am still astounded by how insightful you were then...how you knew things about me then that it took me years to figure out about myself. You were mature in so many ways that I wasn't...and you inspired me by your strength. Not only your physical strength and perseverance to face difficulty with a positive attitude and push yourself to new limits, but by your moral character and strength and practicality that was beyond our years.

I went to visit your parents this year in their new place in North Carolina. It was so wonderful to be with them again, to remember old times and make new memories. We got to eat great BBQ, see the Outer Banks and Cape Hatteras lighthouse, and our doggies made friends. I am so happy to still have them in my life. I still owe them a letter after our summer travels. They are enjoying retirement and having a great time...with one big hole in their hearts. It reminds me of when I spent the night at your house in Macomb in the fall of '03, wishing you were there next to me, just wishing for one more day, to say all the things that will remain unspoken.

Clinging to every memory with every tear and smile....surprised or relieved to feel so much after 7 years?"
Dionna Leung of Oakland, CA

"Mr. & Mrs. Friedrich,

As the 20th approaches, it is with trepidation that I write a message on Travis' Memorial website. I do not wish to add to any grief that individually and collectively you and your family are enduring.

It is seven years since a horrific night removed an extremely gifted intelligence analyst, a remarkable soldier, a patriotic citizen, and one hell of a man from this world.

You are parents... proud of a son, so unconditionally loved and anguishly missed.

My words and letters are small, but the intent and feelings of them are respectfully sincere... Travis blessed each and every one of the humans, be it friend or be it foe, that he came in contact with.

I am a better human being for each and every one of the moments that Travis shared with me.

It is my personal hope, the 20th of September eventually becomes a day of memories and reflection instead of angst and nightmares.

I am,"
DM Lyddy of Leominster, MA

"Travis, your best friend, your sister Amanda is getting married this weekend. You will be missed so much as the families come together to celebrate. I hope I can control my conflicting emotions. Please help me."
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"A Fallen Soldier's Song
(for Army Sgt. David Travis Friedrich, B Company, 325th Military Intelligence Battalion)

Today went slipping by again--
I missed my chance to run.
Perhaps I'm not the only man
Who withers in the sun.

I never knew why flowers bent--
Leaned closer toward the light.
Is imperfection their intent
Or are they erudite?

Perhaps atop your grave I'll see--
A poppy standing tall.
But that's not true, it cannot be
It wouldn't have the gall.

A paradox exists again--
Can flowers beam with pride?
When they know that they cover men
Who should have never died.

If anything should twist and turn--
Be burdened by it's place,
We'll find there on your flag-draped urn
A writhing, flowered face.

If they're ashamed, and rightly so--
By what they live above,
Then why am I afraid to go
And face with day with love?

I have to take my time to sway--
To see what I can do.
If for nothing else, today,
I live my life for you."
Keith Newvine of Syracuse, NY

"I thought of you with love today,
but that is nothing new.
I thought about you yesterday,
and days before that too.
I think of you in silence,
I often speak your name.
All I have are memories,
and a picture in a frame.
Your memory is a keepsake,
with which I'll never part.
God has you in his keeping,
I have you in my heart."
Dave Friedrich of aboard ELIZABETH in Vero Beach

"Merry Christmas, son. We're at your sister Tallie's house for the holidays, and enjoying your nephew Pasquale and your niece Elizabeth, whom you never met. I'm sitting a few feet from where you and Pasquale were playing with his new remote control excavator 7 years ago, the last time we saw you and loved you in person. Loving you still, and forever!"
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"Hey man, it’s never far from my conscious thought of how similar our paths had started out but how different it has gone to date… I am a happily married man with two beautiful children… I never looked into the facts but you and I were both deployed at just about the same time… I joined the military for a way out of the life I was in, you joined for college money…. I ended up with the college money, and never used it… so many years have gone by in which thoughts have passed through my head, thoughts of it should-have-been/could-have-been me… completely missing the picture that there are many more people who are much closer to you then I, who have lost you… a father who has lost his son… mine is only 7 months old and I can’t comprehend what life would be like without him… I pray that God will continue to comfort your loved ones…"
Ben Manning of b'ville, NY

"Veteran's Day, 2009
Travis - To say thank you just isn't enough for the fact that you gave the ultimate sacrifice for your country. We as a country are forever indebted to you and all of your fallen commrades for what you have done. We are forever indebted to those who currently serve our country both here and abroad. A friend will be deployed in December, leaving behind his wife of just over a year. When I think if him I think of you. I admit there is fear for him but I will put my trust in God and pray for him and all of our armed forces. I trust you are at peace and looking down upon your friends and family watching over them. God Bless."

"11-01-09: Just so you'll know, we had a great but short visit from your sister Amanda, and the other day I moved your cremains aboard the boat and put up your Gold Star Flag. I also took little Dillie's ashes in her seashell. We leave in a couple of days on the boat for the winter in Vero.

Your brave, patriotic and courageous brothers and sisters in arms are still joining you. Will it ever end?

I love you and miss you more every day.

ps. We got a new dog: a very imperfect rescue Westie named Miss Doozy Belle. Hope she likes to travel"
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"09-21-09: Travis, your 6th anniversary came and left, just another day, but many of your best friends, comrades, and family emailed and posted on your facebook page to honor your memory. Rest peacefully, son. I love you and miss you. ps. your tree in Waterbury is doing well."
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"Travis I came home from my NY vacation the other day and as I was waiting for my ride, a Solider came out who had just gotten home and he was so excited!! his wife and child pulled up and there were tears and shouts of happiness and hugs. It was wonderful and I thought of you instantly and was sad that is wasn't you and proud of how amazing you are ...and at that very moment a woman walked by and looked at me and leaned in real close and said I just want you to know that Jesus loves you...Thanks for sending me some encouragement. Love you and miss you"
Katy of Orlando, FL

"Oh, Bubby. My heart is broken. . . . . . . still."
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"To the family of:David T. Friedrich I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief. He died a hero defending freedom and we are so grateful for anyone defending our freedom.
Know that I am praying for the peace of God that surpasses all understanding for you and that one day we will all meet in Heaven where we will rest in the arms of Jesus.
If you need someone to talk to or someone to pray with please call my Pastor at Gateway Community Church, Reverand John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd Covington Ga. 30016 Phone 770- 787- 1015 (fax)770-787-8215.Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew"

"Feb. 25, 2009:
Thanks to Amanda K. and her post on facebook I was able to view these messages. They all say what I am thinking. Travis was an wonderful man who was there for anyone at any given time. Even all these years later the stories of him and the friendship he had bring a smile to so many people. He has not been forgotten and will be remembered forever by his fellow classmates and the community."
Nichole Besaw LeClair, GHS Class of 1995 of Richville, NY

"It's a day any family member of a servicemen hopes will never come. We all dread the day a government vehicle will pull into the driveway. For some that day never comes and for others it comes all too soon. We envelope ourselves in the comfort of knowing that when it is our soldier's time, he died for a cause that he believed was greater than himself.

Let Freedom Ring
Throughout Our Land
For One and All,
United We Stand
God Bless America and God Bless Travis Frederich-Always Remembered and Never Forgotten!!!"
Wife of a Sergeant Major of Upstate NY

"sorry travis you will always be with us. dave our thoughts will always be with you"
craigplatt of bradenton fl

"as a former service member and native of gouverneur.. dave you will always be with us!"
craig platt of bradenton Fl

We weren't really friends but I had such a crush on you in the 6th grade...wrote you notes and you wrote me back a really mean one. In true 12 year old style I told your mom (LOL!) and she told me she didn't want to get in the middle of it. Fast forward 5 years and unknown to me at first, you signed my yearbook with an apology and "I hope one day you can forgive me - Travis" I've never forgotten that. I was heartstricken when I heard about your death so many years ago. I've carried your memory with me as I have served in the U.S. Air Force for the last 12 years. Godspeed to all of you."
Hope of OKC, OK

"For those of you on Facebook, we've created a friends group called "Friends and Family of David Travis Friedrich"... please drop in and say hi, share a story, leave a picture... we'd love to hear from you all."
Rob Davis of San Angelo, TX 2/20/2009

"Travis was and will always be the kind of person that everyone strives to be!! My prayers for the Friedrich family."
Jennifer Green Fagnan (Proud wife of Major Don Fagnan and Class of 94) of Charlottesville, VA

"We've been having a class reunion of sorts on Facebook. Shenanigans, hijinks, and, yes, tomfoolery. We all know you'd be in the thick of it.

The subject of Travis has opened up a lot of dialog between a lot of us who wouldn't have kept in touch otherwise. Even now you're still the social lubricant that you always were. Godspeed, my friend."
Rob Davis of San Angelo, TX (GHS Class of 95) 2/20/2009

"They say that 'Time assuages' ...
by Emily Dickinson

They say that "Time assuages"—
Time never did assuage—
An actual suffering strengthens
As Sinews do, with age—

Time is a Test of Trouble—
But not a Remedy—
If such it prove, it prove too
There was no Malady—"
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"Trav...I just found this website...after so many years. I've never been too great at expressing myself, but I wanted you to know that my thoughts are with you and your family. So many times and so many ways you were a great friend to me and I'll not soon forget that. Thank you."
Michael Berry of South Barre, Vermont

"Oh, Travis, our little dog Dilly died Friday, Jan. 30th. She was almost 15. We got her when you were still in high school and you two were always so cute together. She adored you and feared you at the same time. She called you "Boogedy" and you would "Zirbit" her belly. I hope you two old friends are enjoying a romp together. We sold your childhood home in Macomb and moved to a small condo on the Pungo River in North Carolina. It's a lot shorter trip to Florida in the winter in the boat. Dilly's ashes will be in a box right up on the dash of the boat along side yours. Oh, my God, she helped us so much for the last five years. Now you're both gone. I'm working on the idea to get the Intracoastal Waterway to be designated and signed as Memorial Waterways. I'll let you know. We miss you every day. Love forever."
Dave Friedrich of Belhaven, NC

"A long time has past, and still I remember things like an old movie playing in my head. All the nice things you would do that you never had to. Even though we just met on the deployment, you treated me like family, and my heart goes out to yours. They truly lost someone great. In my heart, your my brother till' I die."
David Washington of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

"Travis - In this week of remembering our war heroes I thank you and your family for the sacrifices that were made. I attended a beautiful Veterans ceremony yesterday and thought of you throughout. When I think of you I see your smile and laughter. My thanks to you and your fellow servicemen and women for serving our country, for making us proud, and for giving us and helping us maintain the freedom this beautiful country of the US of A has allowed us. My thoughts and prayers to you and your family."
Andrea of Ithaca, NY

"Wow! I cannot believe it has been 5 years now! I still have that picture up! It's in my office now on the shelf with a bunch of friends and family pics. I miss you so much. I still have a hard time believing that someone as great as you was taken from us! You were one of the "good ones!" I love you and miss you!"
Alicia Proctor-Szilagyi of Buffalo, NY

"Travis (SGT Friedrich), Though it's been 5 years since your untimely passing, I still remember the shock at hearing the news and the sadness I feel for you and your family. As I write this, I am not far from where you fell in Iraq and I think of your sacrifice often. I just wanted you to know that I have not forgotten my fallen brother in arms.
To the Friedrich family: I don't know if you will ever read this or not, but want you to know that I think of you often as well. I have much respect for you. I am sorry for your loss. I have heard that you are leaving the Gouverneur area to return to NC; we will miss you. You have done so much for the community. Thank You. If you ever need anything at all, just ask. billinmj@yahoo.com
GHS Class of 1990

God Bless You All!"
CPT Mathew Billings of Gouverneur, NY Currently serving in Baghdad, Iraq

"I stopped by and took a picture of your name on the Gouverneur arch but my crappy cell phone camera will never do it justice.

Just last week I also took my daughter to see the memorial at the optometrist's office next to Gregg's, and I have to say it is beautiful. The flowers and the work they must spend on it just completely took my breath away, and I won't deny the lump in my throat when I saw the empty boots and the rifle stuck in the ground. You are the pride of Gouverneur, and rightfully so. You were a special man and I'm so thankful I was able to get to know you.

We all miss you.

Rob Davis of San Angelo, TX (GHS Class of 1995)

"August 3, 2008
To the family of Sgt. David T. Friedrich:
David 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

"David T - thinking of you all day today. I read what Bob wrote and I sometimes have thought the same thing that LJ thinks...that you are undercover somewhere. I know that is silly but it actually helps me cope sometimes when I miss you the most :) Love you always-
katy Smith of Orlando, FL (Rochester, NY)

"Travis, Mr&Mrs Friedrich. I am a graduate of GHS, and now serve in the USAF. I was greatly sadened when my mother informed me as to your passing.(I have just now found this site) I was once a student of both your mother and father (I consider to both be the two best teachers that school has ever seen), and it sadens me to know that they had to lose you Travis.

I want you to know Travis, your parents love you so.
They spoke so highly, and proudly, always with a smile as they said your name. They both did so every day, and I know, they still and always will.

I am having a KIA bracelet made, so that I may carry you with me, to guide me, and so when some one asks me who you are, I too can smile and tell them about you."
SSgt. Jeremy M Jackson of Sumter, Sc // GHS Class of 1999


Sorry it's taken me so long to write to you here. It took me 5 years to find this site! I think about you all the time. Any time I have a dream that involves running, you're in it.
I want to thank you for helping me become a better man. You gave me a lot of straight talk and insights into my own flaws, even when I wasn't happy about what you were saying. Kind of like how you used to hate it when people said, "Travis you look like crap." You always were a true friend. My best friend. I wish I were more like you in the respect that, when a section of your life was over (ie: college or high school), you put it behind you and moved on to the next stage. I've tried to do that and live my life the way that you would see fit but I always think of you and our friendship together. You did call it though, I stopped running regularly, but I'm not fat! Sorry, I don't know where that came from.
I just want you to know that you touched many people's lives and you will always be loved.
Maureen and I now have a 3 year old daughter. She has the same sense of humor as you and I. I wish you could meet her. I'm glad that I was priviledged enough to meet you and become your friend. I watch my wedding video often and what you and Nate say in the interviews always gets me.
LJ got married, his wife is a cop now! Joe is still teaching. He copes by telling me that you are still in Iraq fighting undercover (since you had your top secret security clearance). I wish that were the case.
It has been a pleasure knowing you and I will write here often. You were the best person I've ever known. You will always be missed."
Bob Lyng of Pulaski, NY


"I have two sons of my own now, and cannot bear the thought of losing either of them. How does a mother -- or father -- go on? I think of your parents, and your sisters, often. You are in the hearts of so many -- you will always be here."
of Gouverneur

"Anyone (Jamin, Ben, Rob, Jean, etc.) who wishes to contact Travis' parents, you can. We would love to hear from you. We are at dave.friedrich@gmail.com"
Dave Friedrich of Vero Beach, aboard ELIZABETH

"That two-word message before this is mine...not sure what to post here. Stumbling around in the dark...trying to find the proper words. I still can't wrap my brain around this whole thing...thought we paid our dues...ugh. The Friedrichs are always in my thoughts...I miss everything"
Jamin Mashaw of Saratoga, New York

"Ouch! Why?"
HydeParker of 12866

"March 10, 2008 - Five red roses were placed at your Country Club Estates memorial today in honor of the five birthdays that have passed since you made the ultimate sacrifice. We will never forget."
Jean Dobbin of Naugatuck, CT, USA

"Good morning, my boy. You've been a loyal crew member aboard the good ship ELIZABETH, and your place of honor is always respected by all. Your Gold Star burgee is getting a bit faded, but it is as proud as ever. Your sister Amanda and her new family spent several days here in Vero Beach, and we all had a good time. The bad news is that your Grandmother Grace passed away last Friday. Your mother and I were able to rush to Atlanta and be at her side. I whispered in her ear to say Hello to you. I believe she already did. She was 93! We will be heading back home in a few more weeks, and we will be there in time for the Memorial Day Parade. Hey, good news! You finally got your name on a plaque on the "Lest We Forget" arch! It's about time!
I love you, Travis, and if possible, miss you more each day."
Dave Friedrich of Vero Beach, aboard ELIZABETH

"I cannot believe it has been four years already! This war that has taken you from us still wages on. When will enough be enough? I do support our soldiers, but would like to see this all come to an end. I talk to you in my dreams every now and then. You still look the same, sound the same, put me in my place the same and hug the same as you did when we lived in the dorms at brockport. I remember "breaking" into your dorm, moving your tv, couches, dressers, and a number of other things into our room and tying your sneakers, bob's and rob's sneakers into a long rope after XC practice and going into your dressers and hanging all of your boxers on the walls...remember when you stole our bras? Those were the days! One day I will buck up and post the pictures on this page, till then, I will just let you be. I miss you so much! Life is not the same without you!
I love ya!"
Alicia Proctor-Szilagyi of Buffalo, NY

"Hey Trav… you’ve been in my thoughts lately… four years, crazy… I have a 6 month old baby princess…. Skylar Elizabeth (currently playing on my lap)… she is beyond words… I will have to track your parents down, I was just wondering a few days ago if they had ever set sail… peace"
ben manning of b'ville, ny

I was at work the other day, and someone asked me what today's date was, and I replied "the 20th". I then glanced down at the black bracelet on my wrist with your name on it, and smiled. You were an inspiration to us all and a real class act while we were slumming it over in Iraq. Miss you brother."
Spc. Peter Gillis of Boston

"Still missing you."
GHS Class of '95

"Hey Trav. I hope you're enjoying the open waters! I'm thinking of you and your family. Peace be with you all. You're in my prayers."
dor of Gouverneur, NY

"I miss you with every breath I take and with every day I am here and you are not. I hold you and our memories close to my heart."

"I don't know why, but something brought me to your page today. I think about being at Ft. Benning and how we had all made the best of that situation. Our conversations always went to Jeeps. I just want you to know that I am on my third one and it is almost paid off. When it is, I'd like to have it airbrushed with art as sort of a tribute to all the things that are important to me. Your name will be on there, along with Brown's. So when I roll down the highway with the top off, in the middle of Washington DC, I want people I pass to know that you paid the ultimate price, before the politics, before the arguements, before the anti-war protests (yes we get a lot of that here) when it was about being together, comrades, fighting because it was simply, what we signed up for. Your sister in arms, "T""
Sgt Tremblay of Formerly of 325, now Washington DC

"Travis, your mother and I are taking you on an adventure. I hope you don't mind, but I just could NOT leave you home alone. Your cremains are mounted securely on the teak dash over the hatch to the forward cabin of our trawler Elizabeth. You are our moral compass: the boat has at least 5 other compasses including a hand-held bearing compass that belonged to your grandfather. You are going with us as we travel following Fall south and Spring north, and we are seeing with our own eyes, that this is still a country worth dying for. Thank you for helping us with your vision, focus, humor, forgiving spirit, intelligence, and agility. We will need all the help you can give us. Our Gold Star burgee flies proudly (and, of course, sadly) on the bow. Bon Voyage!"
Dave Friedrich of currently afloat on the Erie Canal

"Travis- i haven't been able to write till now. One is because I miss you very very much. Thank you for all the memories at school, the date party, our long talks on the Track bus, the mad dog 20/20 that we put into our gatorade bottles on the way home from Boston so coach wouldn't know, the night when you stopped by my house and wanted to go to my parents house to look at my baby pictures,all the funny emails and letters when we were gone from school. I will cherish the letter you sent your last day, makes me happy that i was on your mind. My life changed that day and I lost one of my best friends. But I laugh every time I think of all of you guys eating everything in the dining hall then running 400's then puking!!! It makes me smile to see how many people loved you and how many lives you have touched. You are an Angel, I love you."
Katy Smith of Orlando, FL

"I'll always remember looking over at Travis in our front-row seats in math class once and seeing him twist a piece of pink yarn around his fingers, then walk it around his desk like it was an action figure or something. I laughed and asked what the deal was and he smirked, more to himself than to me, "Gotta *entertain* myself..." as if Mr P's algebra lesson was child's play.

Random, I know, but that's what brought me here."
Rob Davis of San Angelo, Tx 6/6/07

"I'm sitting here with tears in my eyes and I have no idea what to say... I feel so ripped off, like it's all so pointless. The military is all I've known, this is the only job I've ever held, and yet I can't bring myself to understand or excuse what is wrong with it all.

I am so sorry.
I am so proud to say that I knew you.
I am so glad that your parents can come here and see what an effect you've had on so many lives, and that they did so well as parents.

Godspeed my friend. You are missed."
TSgt Rob Davis, GHS Class of 95 of San Angelo, Texas

"HI My boy! I love you and miss you tons! I have your picture on my desk...the best thing about it is that my husband doesn't mind. My grandmother was at my house tonight. It is almost her time to pass. One of my comforting thoughts is that you will take care of her. I know you are up in heaven having a blast with my father already, but I still miss you. Life has never been the same without you. i saw a friend tonight...a friend I hadn't seen a long time. His life reflected yours, well, a place in my heart reflected yours in mine. It was hard for me to tell my husband that I had seen this person. BUT, thinkig about you made it a little easier. He is a kind man, as you are, but not the man I married...everything happens for a reason. I would have married you, but I got mad when you left me at Bob's wedding...maybe this was why. God knew he would take you from us at a young age. I just hope he had better things for you to do because I am still mad. I am agngry. I miss you. I loved you. I loved you with all of my heart. I wish I could get over you. I don't know what else to say. You were my best friend. I love you!"
alicia of buffalo

"Tomorrow is your birthday. I will go to work, take care of my children and to everyone around me it will just be another day. It's funny how life goes on. It seems so inconsiderate. I am constantly reminded of you and I miss you so much. I see you in Pasquale's quirky humor and his awkward young boy gait. Elizabeth's got your ears! You are always near, in my every day experiences...bittersweet. I even keep your awful crime scene paperbacks even though I know I'll never read them. Just to know your fingers touched them is a comfort. I don't know if you're really in "a better place" as they say. I'm not sure what I believe anymore. All I know for sure is you're gone from us and it's still not fair. Tommorrow, I'll go to Taco Bell for your birthday lunch or maybe I'll make a tuna casserole. Just know, I will be thinking of you."
Tallie (Friedrich) Giuliano of Rochester, NY

"My Dear Travis! I miss you so much! I hope you are in a better place than we are. I still keep your pictures up, and even sent some pics home to your parents...the funny pictures of us in college! I really love the picture of you and me at Bob's wedding, and I love your Mr PotatoHead...it would scare the hell our of your niece! I found some more pics and will send them to your mother and father. I know it seems silly that I am typing a message to you, but if heaven is anything like we learned it was, I know you will receive it! I will never stop missing you and loving you!"
Alicia Proctor-Szilagyi of Buffalo, NY

"Trav, three years is a long time to grieve. I have much to be thankful for, that's very true, but now I know that grief will always be my companion, like a shadow that follows me around, not always visible but always close. Ethan's mention of the Cemetery Seven and the Shadow Run brought me here. Ethan didn't mention that he and Amanda have a new baby boy named Ethan, and your sister Tallie has a new baby girl named Elizabeth Grace, for your mother and your grandmother. She was born August 27th. There is an old song with the line, "and when I'm gone, there'll be one child born to carry on." You are in that child, and because of that she will receive more love and respect than she knows how to deal with. Your mother is finishing her last year of teaching, and looking forward to retiring in June. We bought a bigger trawler and will take it South for the winters starting next year. It too is named Elizabeth, for your mother, your sister, and your new niece.
I love you."
Dave Friedrich of Macomb, New York

This month from begining to end is filled with so many negatives. It is filled with so much sorrow,greif and anger. I have decided that it is ok to allow myself to remember all of them and to think of more, because it is normal. The only promise I have made is that before I wonder off with my head down I will offset those negatives with a positive thought. I will not allow myself to go throught this month feeling helpless or enraged. I have to many thoughts that are pure and that are mine to give in to creating negatives of my own. I know many people, back in the day, had been feeling less than content, for whatever reason, and you were the one who never left them the way you found them. It was you that people looked to for hope and honesty, they also got comedy as a freebie. How did you always have an intelligent way of explaining things, giving us a new direction, and before we knew it, we were on our way with new found hope and for some reason laughing? Now, like then, we turn around to say, "Thanks man," and you have moved on. Here I go again, I cant see the blurry computer screen. I am thinking of the cemetery 7 X-country run your Dad made up... Route 58 at the 60 foot high rock cut...I am on the road about to fall over from exhaustion and the people in front of me have stopped and are pointing to something...I look to my left and there are shadows on the rock cut wall...shadows of cars going by, the very ones that are passing me...but wait what the heck is that shadow...there is a Giant stomping on the cars as they drive by...I look up on the rock wall on my side and there you are Tavis...smiling and stomping, stomping and smiling, I guess you decided the road was to boring and there was a less traveled path to be seen,and it was worth it. So we all stood there laughing as you once again took us out of our situation and to your world for just a few minutes in time. Thanks man.
(There was one other person I remember on that rock. She was always by his side. I bet she has one or two good ones to tell. I would like to read anyones story so that it can be passed on as a great memory.)"
Ethan Reynolds of Your humble community, Gouverneur, NY

"Wow it's Sept. 11th, 2006, 5 years after the fact of everything beginning. As I sit here at my computer at 3:34 am because I can not sleep, because I am thinking about everyone that I knew and served with that I have lost within the past 5 years. You are part of this Travis. We may not have talked that much in school, but your sister Talley was one of my really good friends. Thinking back to this day, and where I was and who this day effected the most in my life I would have to say my daughter, she didn't realize that being born to me would leave her behind for many months as I went off to defend this country in something that we stood for. Just like your parents never knew that you joining would do the same. And honestly I can say that I'm proud for what we stand and stood for, no one can ever take that away from us. You mean more to many people than you'll ever know, you are part of our history, a life that was taken to give life...maybe not for the people of our country, but the country that needed to be saved and helped. You helped to give freedom to the children that never knew what it was like to play sports like you did, to mothers that never knew what it was like to be able to be themselves like your mother, to daughters and sisters that never knew what it was like to be able to have an education and live the life that they have always wanted to, and to fathers that could never give their families the love and loyality that your father gave to yours. Travis this day, I will bow my head and pray for all of the families lives that you have touched in some way or another, and also for the families that have lost others in this war. I thank you and your family for giving us such a soldier as yourself to defend this country in a time that was needed. I hope that you look down on all of us and are pleased as to the job that we have done as fellow soldiers. You will always be in my prayers and thoughts! God speed my fallen soldier!
SSG Heather Plante-Dickey"
SSG Heather Plante-Dickey of Savannah,Ga

"To the family of Sgt Friedrich, our family sponsored a flag in his name for the Healing Field in Lynchburg, Va, over July 4th, 2006. We would be glad to send it you all in his memory. There is a yellow ribbon with his name. We did not know who we sponsored until we got the flag. We wanted to sponsor one in memory of our grandson, but it was taken. Please e mail us at justontthacker@sunlitsurf.com if you would like this flag, it would be our honor to send to you. LCpl Juston Thacker gave his life in Afghanistan 6/24/04 he was 21. Our family knows the pain and extend to you and yours our heartfelt thoughts and prayers. May God Bless you all as you go about honoring this fine young man. May we all remember that "the cost of Freedom is high, but the cost of the loss of that Freedom is higher" quote on Immanuel Baptist Church marque, in Princeton, WV. Proud grandparents of Juston."
Tom & Dixie Sisk of Princeton, WV

"hey trav.... it's just about memorial day 2006 and i am still having trouble over all of this... it's just not right, i feel it should have been me.... i am getting married on the 10th of June this year, we will be thinking of you (alot of the old friends are going to be there).... i also wanted to let you know that my first sons middle name is going to be David in your honor...."
Benjamen Manning of Baldwinsville, NY

"R.I.P. my fellow solder, god bless his family he was a great guy i went to basic with him and i remember all the friends i have lost everyday, WE WILL NEVER FORGET."
adam mcmurdy of mv.ca

"I remember very clearly having breakfast with you several mornings at the MKT at Camp Cropper. We talked about a variety of things, mostly how hot it was and how much we hated the cubes of egg and sausage. I remember thinking you were one of the soldiers that made the Army Reserves a great place: A smart and thoughtful man who knew his job and performed it with pride and without much complaint. When I got the word that you had been hit over at Abu my heart just sunk. I have thought a great deal about you since then. We weren't really anything more than aquaintances in the same dirty little camp but I can tell you that you are not forgotten."
CPT Jonathan Bennett of Centreville, VA

"Travis, I think about you everyday. I hear the song "TAPS" from the VFW everynight at 9:00pm, I always stop whatever it is I'm doing to remember you and thank you for everything. I was there with you that night and I wish that it was me instead. You had so much going for you. You were an awesome leader and a great friend. I put up a small memorial at work here in Alaska remembering you. I tell everyone about you. I really do miss you. You were the first person from the unit that I remember meeting. Everytime I think of you, I try to remember the good times and how you always tried to motivate me. Thank you for everything, Travis. I miss you."
SPC Jeannette Andrews (Medina) of Eagle River, AK (formerly Middletown, CT)

"Well, Trav, two years ago today you were still alive. Tomorrow I will replace the tattered flag which I have been flying in your honor for two years. Today I will build a triangular box out of scraps of wood and plexiglass. I have enough scraps to make about four boxes. Each flag lasts about two years. I retired from teaching this year after 37 years. You have no idea what your passing has done to me. "I feel like a dead man, held on end, to sink down soon" from Thomas Hardy's "The Going". I love you!"
Dave Friedrich of Macomb, NY

"We honored David on 17 August at Peace VIGIL IN Bozeman Montana."
Rev. Christie of Bozeman, Montana

"Travis, you always had that knack to make people laugh. Every time I read a Where's Waldo book, or play Yatzee, see Jerry Springer, Beavis and Butthead or people throwing up on a track after eating as much as they could at the cafeteria I will think of you and smile. I heard that you died the day before my birthday and that year I ran the Boston marathon in your honor. I didn't run as fast as you would have, but I am sure you would have cheered for me anyway. My teddy bear still wears my favorite tie of yours that you gave him on the way home from a track meet, so you are not, and never will be fogotton. Enjoy your wings my friend."
Stephanie Abt of Boston, MA (friend from SUNY Brockport)

"Travis, not a day goes by that I don't think of you. I miss you with all of my heart. I still have your pictures surrounding me, your memory lives on in my heart and in my mind. I love you."
Alicia Proctor of Buffalo, NY

"Today I remember Travis, and my heartfelt thoughts and prayers are extended to his family and friends. May you find peace and comfort with each passing day, and know that he is with you, running along beside you forever.

Memorial Day 2005"
of USA

"To the family of SGT Friedrich: I submit my deepest sympathies. I never knew David but was once a student at Gouverneur and both parents were once my teacher and or coach. I can only say as a soldier myself how proud you should be at David's selflish sacrifice. I only pass through NY every now and then and heard when I came home in 2003. He is forever a hero and I send a prayer in hopes that you (his family) are doing well."
SSG Billie (Countryman) York of Missouri (formerly Gouverneur)

"Dear David
I am sorry to say that the way I came to know you was by your death. I wear your name on a "Fallen Heroes Bracelet". You are at the age that if I had a son he could of been, I have two daugthers. If I could tell you anything it would be thank you, you are a real hero. My family is deeply sorry for the short time your family got to enjoy you. Our hearts go out to all your fellow fallen heroes who are now with you. I am a longhaul truck driver with my husband. We travel 48 states delivering all kinds of goods. Since your on my wrist you have been alot of places and seen alot of things. I know this was not what you planned for your life and I and all Americans are sorry for the great sacrifice you and your family made."
Molly Brown of Salem Or Marion

"Dear Travis,
As a fellow soldier and school mate, I shall say this, you will be truely missed forever! I remember seeing your face the happiest while you were running track, and joking with your friends. You and your family were always the nicest people, and gave a lot to the students at Gouverneur. I never knew you as a soldier, but I am sure you gave it your all, just like everything else in life that you did while you were growing up. I send all of my heart felt apologies to your family, and to let them know that I will always remember you as a Veteran, commarade and friend from home. While you sit high above us Travis looking down on all of us that knew you, either from high school, college or your military experience, always remember that YOU gave your everything, and you passed doing good for this country! You will always be remembered by many in different ways, but I'll always remember you as a school mate that never failed and never turned their back on anyone. Keep looking down on your family, take care of them, look down on our fellow soldiers, and for the ones that join you in your time of rest greet them with your smile and your happiness! Keep running and GOD SPEED TRAVIS! You're missed!!!!! To Mr. and Mrs. Friedrich, Tallie and Amanda, I am so sorry that Travis was one of the ones taken from you in this War, and I hope and pray that each and every one of you is doing ok! He is truely a hero in all of our eyes! God Bless you all!"
SSG Heather Plante-Dickey of Savannah, Ga ... Formerly of our little town Gouverneur,NY

"Travis, I'm still not good with words. I glad, despite this, you always knew how much I cared. Thank you for every second we had together. I appreciated them as they happened and will cherish them for the rest of my life. I am lucky to be your sister. I miss you and will love you always. Happy Birthday 3-10-05."

Happy Birthday.
I often wondered how it was growing up in the family that did so much for our community's kids. I knew them as teachers, leaders and teamates. The same interests brought me back to them as an apprentice. Now it has become an experience of reality/life. I now have learned what a positive, loving, and nuturing atmosphere they do provide. Even on the "Three dog nights". The thing that would make you the proudest is that they still have continued on each day... giving hope, confidence, and the right tools to young Americans. I see that no matter how direct their teachings are towards their youths, it will be the indirect affect that captures a kid's heart. I know, I was one of them. Stop and think, in just the past few years, combined, they have already passed this on to hundreds of students. Each day they make the same journey, but have changed the journey of others. They are our Givers. Travis, I speak for many good people when I say WE honor you, WE love you and WE thank you for the opportunities that you and your family have given to all of us. Your life, their devotion "Will not be forgotten".
Ethan L. Reynolds of Your humble community, Gouverneur,NY

i'd like to email with the family of
david. i've recently acquired a hero
bracelet with his name on it and
I'd like to know something about him,
the person, so I can do this bracelet
justice. I'd like his family to know that i'm honoring their son/brother
also. my e mail address is Lga1424@aol.com

my thoughts are with you during your
extreme time of sadness."
lynn grasso of tampa, florida

"At my temple for our High Holiday services we each took a name of a fallen soldier and we were to honor them in some way. I picked the name of Sergeant David Travis Friedrich of Hammond, New York. I have looked up a lot about him online and he seems like an amazing person. To honor him I recently donated $50 of my birthday money to Cell Phone for Soldiers so that hopefully a few soldiers will be able to call home to their families for the holidays. I am so sorry for the loss of Travis, but hopefully some men will get to speak with their families in his memory. I thought his friends and family would like to know what I had done."
Mindy , 16 of CT

"Good buy buddy, i love you and miss you."
rob boring of rochester ny

"Travis, your Dad told me,"this is what happens when you give it all you got." Thank you for giving all you had for me."
Mike Young of Macomb, NY

"Trav... it has been almost a year now... I still cry... it is so hard to get over that fact of losing a friend and then on top of that losing a soldier just like me... if we had been in the same unit we would have had a great time together... keep running brother.."
SSG Benjamen Manning of Gouverneur, NY

""Where were you on that September day
When the clouds floated over oh so grey

What did you do when you heard the sound
Did you pray for your life and hit the ground

What did you think when the ringing stopped
Did you wonder where the rounds had dropped

What did you do when you heard the death toll
Did you feel a knife tear at your soul

What did you do when we didn't return fire
To kill the enemy was that your desire

Now our Brothers are long gone
All we are left with is a solemn gong

God bless our heroes who where slain
Those angels where not killed in Vain

I wrote this twenty minutes after the attack. I never wrote poetry before this day. I knew Travis and Lunsford must be forever remebered so I wrote this.""
Spc. Anthony Whipkey of Leonardtown, MD

"Hi Travis - I'm Alicia Proctor's mom - i brought my mom to visit
Alicia at Brockport and my mom Pinched your butt on the elevator (i told her do so - she had several strokes and sometimes does things upon demad) you were so good and so sweet - your smile will forever be on my mind - say hi to alicia's dad - he's with you too!!! he passed away when alicia was just 6 years - god bless you and watch over your family"
Alcia's mom of Niagara Falls NY

"Travis, I will always miss you! You were my dearest friend in college, a person to confide in, a man who motivated many. You will be missed! I love you and think about you all the time. You picure will forever remain on my dresser, in my heart and in my mind!"
Alicia Proctor of Buffalo, NY

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

"I look at your photo often and remember our friendly banter on jeeps. I hope you get to ride yours, with the top off, in the clouds and see below, family, friends and comrades who will always remember your name and your face."
Sgt T. of A Co 325

"Travis touched the lives of everyone who knew him. He will live on through those who loved him. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Friedrichs, and to all of Travis's family and many, many friends."
Amy (Williamson) & Derek Bowman of Charlotte, NC (Formerly of Gouverneur, NY)

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

"To Sgt. Friedrich's Family"
Though we are strangers, we want you to know how sorry we are your David was taken from you. There is no doubt his thoughts were of you as he served with the Army in Iraq. We will never forget. You are in our hearts. (1/27/04)"
Carol & Larry Miller of Tampa, Florida

"Travis... we are all going to miss you"
SSG Benjamen Manning of Ft. Hood, TX

"Thank you David Friedrich, 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 Sgt. David T. Friedrich. May the Lord comfort you at your time of need. I know that our nation mourns at the loss of another HERO! He will not be forgotten nor his deeds of valor and courage! Respectfully Yours - The Sibert Family"
Kathleen V. Sibert of Redondo Beach, California

"To the family and friends of Sgt. David Friedrich:
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 David 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 Sgt. David Friedrich:
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 David, 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