Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Marine Cpl. Brian Matthew Kennedy

25, of Houston, Texas.
He was assigned to the Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron —268, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Corps Air Station, Camp Pendleton, Calif. Died on March 20, 2003.

Kennedy, who was born and grew up in Glenview, Ill., called his mother on March 18 to tell her he was about to go into action. "It was very short and very special," she says of the call. Three days later he died when his CH-46E Sea Knight helicopter crashed in Kuwait.

Source: MSNBC/Newsweek

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"Hey Brian it’s me (also Brian) I know i didn’t know you but my dad did we visit you every year and leave flowers for you. Rest In Peace"
Brian Crisp of San Diego

"Semper Fi Brian...I think about you often. The bond we had as Marines will never end, you live on in my thoughts often. A small part of you is in Arkansas now with one of your crew chiefs uniforms you gave me on the Boxer. Keep guarding Heavens gates brother, I will see you when I get there."
Aaron Parsons of Benton, AR

"You're Never Forgotten Brother...I miss ya buddy! Semper Fi

Your HTown Brother"
Sgt. Farray of Houston

"Not a day goes by I don't pass by your house and recall the little boy in camouflage playing army in the backyard with my brother. Your absence is felt more as time passes."
Kate of Glenview, IL

"Rest in Peace brother.."
Josh Johnson of virginia

"I will never forget our road trip to Gulf Shores when we were at Purdue. Although our time knowing each other was so short, I'm so glad we had that crazy weekend with Steph and Theresa. I was just remembering that as I thought of you on this Memorial Day."
Karen of California

"We miss you so much it hurts. Every day. Love you."
Alexis of Kansas City

"Has it really been so long, old friend? You are the greatest example of how to be a friend. To this day, all things orange remind me of you. I'll see an orange Volkswagen and say to whoever is with me that " Brian would love that."

I promise you that my young daughter will know all about you. I was so lucky to be young with you. There was always something to do. The world is really missing a great soul.

Thanks for being you. You're missed like you wouldn't believe."
Joe Simczak of kapaa, hi

"You will never be forgotten Brian. It's always hard around this time of year."
TJ of Los Angeles California

"Semper Fi brother. Gone but never forgotten."
Brandon Arellano of pueblo co.

"Miss you Brother!"
Dave of Temecula, Ca

"been thinking of you brian remembering some good times. I wish you were still around."


I have alot of small memories of you throughout our time together as Red Dragons. You were always willing to help anyone out on the line, you went way beyond your duties as an Airframer and became a crew chief. Not an easy task. I have fond memories of drinking beer and listening to Music outside the Nco Barricks. You will always be missed brother. Semper Fi. (Ten years today)

J williamson-Houston, Tx"


I have alot of small memories of you throughout our time together as Red Dragons. You were always willing to help anyone out on the line, you went way beyond your duties as an Airframer and became a crew chief. Not an easy task. I have fond memories of drinking beet and listening to Music outside the Nco Barricks. You will always be miss brother. Semper Fi. (Ten years today)

J williamson-Houston, Tx"
Billy of Houston, Tx

"Cpl Kennedy - I was at Al Jaber the day you took off. I was also a Cpl from Houston in the Corps at that time. I was thinking of that crazy few weeks today, and it still makes me sad. Semper Fi."
Dave of Houston, TX

"I can't believe 9 years have already passed since we stood in front of the PX waiting for hours to get in only to be disappointed when the generator went out as we walked in the door. You were a great friend and an incredible person. I know that I will get to see you again someday.

Mike Carter of Fort Smith, AR

"Brian, your name comes up frequently during conversations I have with former Marines. I can't believe it has been almost 9 years. It seems like just yesterday we were in airframes, talking about "Goon", laughing, and crying..... I will see you at Point Loma on the 21st. Hopefully, Stevo and Grandpa Gene will be there with me, drinking a beer overlooking the bay. Miss you!"
Jay V. of San Diego, California

"It's been a long time Brian, gone but never forgotten. One one the greatest men I ever had the pleasure of serving with, Semper Fi brother"
Mario "GUTZ" Gutierrez of Derby, KS

"A simple man..."
Mendez of Dallas

"Kennedy and Watersbey were great guys! Both men had a heart of gold and would go out of their way to help you out. They will be missed but not forgotten."
John Hallett of Coolidge, AZ

"”Honor and Remember” - “Project Compassion” We love our Soldiers! We love our country and we cannot express enough love and compassion to the families of our fallen heroes. War does not discriminate – It breaks our hearts to see the faces of the fallen. We want to give this gift to the hero’s Mother, Father and/or spouse. We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization! Almost 2,100 portraits have been completed and shipped to the parents and or spouse - at no cost as this is a gift from one American to another!
This is a gift! We have wonderful sponsors who help with the costs, and want you know that everyone here at Project Compassion does and will always CARE.
Contact us directly at Projectcompassion@manti.com or go to www.heropaintings.com . If you have already had a portrait completed, we pray that you are enjoying the portrait and God Bless You.
Sincerely and Respectfully,
Project Compassion - Kenna of Manti, Utah USA

"Brian, what a killer person you always were. The type of guy I wish I was. I remember the last time we really talked. You kind of ran out of your GP tent, caught eyes with me and said, "Hey, Coop! You gotta come listen to this!" It was DMB singing:

"And if I had a boat
I'd go out on the ocean
And if I had a pony
I'd ride him on my boat
And we could all together
Go out on the ocean
Me upon my pony on my boat"

Lyle Lovett. What an odd thing. But it's stuck with me for the past six years. Don't they go by in a blink.

Anyway, I'm sorry things went down the way they did. Shoulda never happened Like that. I'm sorry for your family. And Jacek and Robin too. I just can't imagine.
See you next time I'm out at the point."
Roger of Sheridan, Indiana

"this is a poem that my friend sends to all his employees before Christmas, he is a marine, author unknown. Twas the night before christmas, he lived all alone
In a one bedroom house
made of plaster and stone
I had come down the chimney with presents to give
and to see just who in this home did live
As i looked all about, a
strange sight i did see
no tinsel, no presents, not even a tree
No stocking by the fire
just boots filled with sand
On the wall hung pictures of a far distant land.
With medals and badges,
awards of all kind,
a sobering thought soon
came to my mind.
For this house was different, unlike any I'd seen
This was the home of a U.S. Marine
I'd Heard stories about them, I had to see more,
so I walked down the hall
and pushed open the door.
And there he lay sleeping,
silent, alone
Curled up on the floor in
his one-bedroom home.
He seemed so gently, his face so serene,
Not how i pictured a U.S. marine
Was this the hero, of
whom I'd just read?
Curled up in his poncho, a
floor for his bed?
His head was clean-shaven, his weathered face
I soon understood, this
was more than a man.
For i realized the families
that I saw that Night,
owed their lives to these
men, who were willing to fight.
Soon around the Nation, the Children would play,
and Grown-ups would
celebrate on bright Christmas day.
They all enjoyed freedom,
each month and all year, because Marines like this one lying here.
I couldn't help but wonder how many lay alone,
on a cold christmas Eve,
in a land far from home.
Just the very thought
brought a tear to my eye
I dropped to knees, and
I started to cry.
He must have awoken, for
I heard a rought voice
Santa Don't cry this life
is my Choice.
I fight for freedom, dont
ask for more.
My life is my God, my country,
my Corps.
With that he rolled over,
drifted off into sleep, i couldn't control it, i continued to weep.
I watched him for hours, so siliend and still. I noticed he shivered from the cold night's chill. So i took of my jeacket, the made of red, and covered this marine from his toes to his head.
Then I put his T-shirt of Scarlet and gold,
with an eagle, globe and anchor emblazoned so bold.
Ald although it barely fit me,
I began to well with pride,
And For one shining moment, i was Marine Corps deep inside.
I didnt want to leave him
so quiet in the night,
this guardian of honor so
willing to fight.
But half asleep he rolled over, and in a voice clean and pure
said "Carry on, Santa, it's
Christmas Day, all
One look at my watch, and
I knew he was right,
Merry Christmas my
friend, Semper Fi, and

I sent you this poem is memory of Brian Matthew Kennedy."
Mike B of Chicago

"March 15, 2009
To the family of Cpl. Brian Matthew Kennedy:
Brian 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

"Brian is a great man and inspired many people through out his life. Know that your strength and name still goes on and carries with my Son Brian Thomas who was born on May 17th, 2008. Your my brother and I will never forget you . . .

-Semper Fi"
Sgt. Joseph Hummel of Buena Park, CA

"Grew up with Brian, hold some fond memories of my old friend. Rest in peace."
Chris of Chicago

"rest in peace my friend."
jay of glenview. ill

I was your Doc in Oki. You lived 2 doors down from me. God Bless you Brother. Thank for your service. Semper Fi"
Doc B. of Texas

"Brian and I were great friends while we served together. We had alot of good times, and I think of him daily. I had the honor of meeting his dad(who beat us handedly in golf), and even met his sister and brother in law in Arizona. My deepest condolences to his whole family."
Sgt J. Manning of Kingwood, TX

"Are there any new words for poop? i thinnk we may have exaghsted the lot. miss the orange cap and the deep radio voice. Im still waiting for when it "practicle""
Robin of Lansing

"May 22, 2007
To the family of Brian Matthew Kennedy. Brian 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

"May you always remember him for the hero that he was"
Lorene Meacham of Monument, CO, USA

"I wear your bracelet on special occasions. At dinner on the anniversary I wore it. It was a great dinner, and you were there with me. Rest in peace, I will see you again Brian, I think of you every day."
Shaun Kelley of Vista, CA


You were my best friend when we were kids. I always thought wed know each other our entire lives. I miss you still.

Rest in peace, my friend."
Steve of Chicago, IL

"To brian's parents. I was on the boxer with him. I learned that he was an awesome marine let along a person. I was devestated when he died. I carry his obit ive carried his obit in my wallet since he died."
cpl Borgogno, Nick A of ontario oregon

I would like to say thank you to you and the other men who were on that '46 with you for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your family, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

Semper Fi Devil Dog!"

"I have great honor and respect for Brian Matthew Kennedy, Rest in peace, may your memory be charished forever!"
Jessica A Kennedy of Virginia

"I have great honor and respect for Brian Matthew Kennedy, Rest in peace, may your memory be charished forever!"
Jessica A Kennedy of Virginia

"On this Memorial Day 2006 - while others are shopping and eating BBQ - I take a few minutes to remember the cute, chubby boy you were and the GREAT man you became.
Your family still loves & misses you Brian - everyday. You are cherished!
RIP dear one, rest in peace..."

"Though I only new you for a short while you were a great person in whom I could call a friend and on this Memorial Day Brian I thank you for your friendship and your sacrafice, and every time I here "Simple Man" a tear falls for you Semper Fi my friend."
John Roberts (Ssgt USMC) of West Paris, ME

"Brian you are truly missed by all and just remembering how your smile put smiles on anyone who was near you is missed."
Sreenu of New York

"love of my life... thank you for showing how to love and why, you are now and always will be the love of my life... miss you more every day. You have inspired me... thank you..."
Robin of Lansing Michigan

"Three years ago today... As a former college teammate and friend to Brian, his loss has hit many hearts. He was hated by nobody. Loved by everyone. Always toting his beloved dog Ashley, wearing flip-flops, an orange belt and a smile -- that was Purdue!

Brian, we still wear your number on our helmets today. You will always be remembered and never forgotten!!"
Jason of Dallas, TX

"Like Jack Said VIVA LAS ORANGE!!!
Dave of Las Vegas

"In your honor and with gratitude to you, Brian Matthew Kennedy, I’ve planted a daffodil in your name, as have others across the country as part of Project LIVE ON, a program I founded to memorialize each U. S. military who has died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Thousands of beautiful daffodils will come up each Spring, and, like your spirit, will LIVE ON...and ON. Blessings to you, the family, as you grieve, and heal. For details, please contact projectliveon@aol.com. Jan. 22, 2006."
Gretchen Forbes of the northcentral mountains of Pennsylvania

"I have planted a daffodil in Brian's memory along with 50 others to represent his life' living on 'through projectliveon@aol.com. I thank him and his family and friends for their sacrifice."
Ruth Anderson of Mountain View, California

"Thank you for giving so selflessly to a cause so few believe in. As a Marine wife, I pray every day for my husband's safe return. I pray that God watches over your family and comforts them throughout this trying time. As the sister of a fallen Marine, I pray that no other family should have to go through the pain of losing a son. Thank you for being a Hero. Thank you for being a United States Marine. Semper Fi!"
kaleimaile of Pearl City, Hawaii, USA

"From all the names I noticed yours. It brought a lump to my throat and a face to your name. Rest in peace from your name sake in Scotland."
Matthew Kennedy of Scotland UK

You have made the ultimate sacrifice for the freedom of a foreign country that will never know you. The majority of Iraqis understand and appreciate exactly what you stood for. You have fulfilled your commitment to the world as an American and as a United States Marine. Your family and friends can stand proudly every time they hear our Star Spangled Banner. As a fellow Marine, I thank you and your family for their sacrifice.
"Often Tested, Always Faithful, Brothers Forever""
Alan H Barbour of Marshall, VA

"God Bless you and your family.
you are a beautiful soul"
another kennedy

"God Bless you and your family.
you are a beautiful soul"
another kennedy

"Today, my friend and I were walking around the Rosecrans National Cemetary in San Diego. Our eyes naturally focused on the new headstones, and, with a feeling of dread and regret, we read of Corporal Kennedy's passing during the Iraqi War. Being veterans ourselves, we realize the great sacrifice he, like his fallen brothers and sisters around him, has given for this great country.

A small pine tree alongside Corporal Kennedy's headstone made us also comment on the great sacrifice his family has performed.

May his memory, and the love of his family, continue to breath life into the body of Liberty throughout the world."
Darin Stark of GC, MI

"I think about your sacrafice everyday. You were a great friend and a magnificent person. Miss you always."
Heather Elworthy Smith of Evanston, IL

I miss you, man!!!"

"To the family of Marine Corporal Brain Matthew Kennedy,
I am an eigth grade student in Madison Tenn and I am sorry that he died during the war. I know he was fighting for our country. It took courage to go to war. It must be hard to lose a family member. I am glad that there is a holiday for veterans. We are thankful for his sacrifice."
Chris L. of william.gant@mnps.org

"Thank you brave soldier for sacrificing your today for my children's safer tomorrow. You have our utmost respect and gratitude. May God grant your family comfort and peace in this time of sorrow. May you enjoy your final Tour of Duty in Heaven; where there is peace. Thank you again."
a grateful citizen in Arizona

"I have done a lot of reasearch to learn about Brian and the wonderful life he had. I have been trying to personally get to know who all of these wonderful soldiers were, because my husband, Spc Justin W. Linden died in Iraq too on June 4, 2004 and I know I would want everyone to know how special he was. I will never forget the sacrifice these fine men made and I will pray for all of you who knew Brain every day. They will always be with us in our hearts."
Sarah Linden of Portland, OR. USA

"RIP Marine"
Petty Officer Cawthon of RTC Great Lakes, IL

"I'm a student in 7th grade. I play hockey and it was cool to see that Brian played lacrosse. I learned from the e-mail messages that he was a fine engineer and a considerate roomate. You must of have been proud of him."
7th grade student of Barker Middle School

"Thank you Brian for your sacrifice and for being Andrew's roomate at Purdue. You earned his deep respect and admiration. Now you two honorable men are with God, but you both remain in our hearts."
Ed Roccella of Vienna, Virginia

"We have not forgotten you Marine. Rest in peace Tufelhunden....Semper FI"
The Taylors USMC of NC

"In loving Memory..Its been a year..

At the rising of the sun and at its going down, We remember them.
At the blowing of the wind and in the chill of Winter, We remember them.
At the opening of buds and in the rebirth of Spring, We remember them.
At the blueness of the skies and in the warmth of Summer, We remember them.
At the rustling of leaves and the beauty of Autumn, We remember them.

As long as we live, they too will live;
for they are now a part of us, as we remember them.
Rest in Peace Dear Marine!! SEMPER FI!! We will NEVER FORGET!"
The Grogan Family of Lakeland, TN

"We Will NEVER FORGET !" As the first anniversary of the death of your loved one arrives;
Please KNOW so many people share your sadness, and we are remembering all your family and loved ones in your loss and your deep grief. Your HERO, Brian, will be remembered by name. Our thoughts and prayers are with you. God Bless you. Pat & Sandi Breckenridge from Montana "

"On the anniversary of Brian's passing, I wanted his family and friends to know that he has not been forgotten. His service to this country, his sacrifices and yours are deeply appreciated. May God bless and keep you."
Kelli of USA

"I know exactly what Rosaunda means when she calls Brian "Teddy Bear." He was always giving these great big bear hugs that squished all the air out of you! And he had a smile and personality that made everyone feel at ease and welcome. I will always remember him as a big brother and great friend. Thanks, Brian, for always being such a true person and following your dreams. You are an inspiration for us all. I know you'll always be looking out for all of us in "The Gang." We miss you!"
Ruth Raby of Houston, TX, USA

"I met Brian when I was 18. He instantly became like a big brother. Picking on each other, laughing at one another, and having a great time ALWAYS! Most of all, he was always there for me when I needed a pick me up with that beautiful genuine smile. I called him my "Teddy Bear". The world became a better place with him in it. Words can not express my graditude to him, all the other fallen soldiers, and to those who have or are still fighting for all of us. Just.... Thank you!! To Brian, I love you. My friend, my brother, my hero, my "Teddy Bear"."
Rosaunda Shoffner of Houston, Tx

"I met Brian at Purdue University my freshman year. After that year we both moved to Houston for the first time and were the only friends the other had. From there our friendship grew easier than anything I have ever experienced. Brian was a true friend who was there to help me from the first day I met him, and will always be with me to help quide me through my life. Brian brought happiness to everyone he touched, I was just priveleged enough to call him my best friend, and I will will always miss him. He lived his life to the fullest and never had any regrets. Keep smiling."
Dan Polomchak of Houston, Texas

"Brian was definitely one of the coolest people in the world. He had such character and energy that made everyone who came in contact with him a better person. He will be missed and remembered for a very long time."
Diane Denney of Friendwood, TX

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


"May you find comfort in knowing how many people share your sadness and loss. Thanks Cpl. Kennedy for fighting for our freedom. You are a TRUE HERO! Our thoughts and prayers are with your family. We Will NEVER FORGET! Semper Fi!"
The Grogan Family (USMC) of Lakeland, TN

"Brian Kennedy was a good friend, an excellent lacrosse player, a considerate roomate, and a fine engineer. What I'll remember about Brian the most is that he taught me to be myself.

Andrew Roccella of Vienna, VA

"Thank you Brian Kennedy, 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 Cpl Brian Kennedy, Know that he will always be remembered! We met breifly thru a friend and I will never forget how easy it is to make friends, yet take it so hard to loose them. God be with you, Semper Fidelis, SSgt Henry "Chavez" Garcia"
Henry "Chavez" Garcia of 1st Battalion, 11th Marines, 1st Marine Div, Camp Pendleton Ca,

"My prayers go out to the family of Cpl. Kennedy. I feel a sense of pride when I think of his sacrifice, and of the honor he has bestowed upon his family and the Marine Corps. Semper Fidelis. If there is anything that I can do for the family, please contact me."
Octavio De La Garza Jr., Hospital Corpsman 3rd class, Desert Storm 1991 of Houston Tx. octaviodelagarza@yahoo.com

"Brian was an amazing person and friend. Knowing him taught me to try and be better at all things. I miss him but know that he is safe and surrounded with love."
Joe Simczak of Chicago, IL

"My husband worked with Cpl Kennedy and said he was a good man. God bless your family."
Mellie of Camp Pendelton,Ca,GREAT USA

"Our prayers are with your family during this difficult time. Thank you brave soldier, your courage and sacrifice will nerver be forgotten."
Ken and Maritza Holley of Pembroke Pines, Florida

"To the family and friends of Cpl. Brian Kennedy:
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 Brian 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 Cpl. Brian Kennedy:
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 Brian, who continues to live on in your heart."
Tim Rivera, of Powder Springs, Georgia

"Thank you Cpl Kennedy for your sacrifice, the ultimate sacrifice you gave to protect the freedom and beauty of this Nation. You will never be forgotten..."
The Taylors, USMC of North Carolina

Honor them by remembering... Freedom - is their gift to us But his soul goes marching on