Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Marine Lance Cpl. Jakub Henryk Kowalik

21, of Schaumburg, Illinois.
Killed in Iraq along with another First Marine Expeditionary Force Marine when unexploded ordnance they were handling detonated. He was assigned to the 1st Maintenance Battalion, 1st Force Service Support Group, based at Camp Pendleton, California. Died on May 12, 2003.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Marine Lance Cpl. Jakub Henryk Kowalik.


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Leave a message in memory of this servicemember, and/or to the loved ones left behind.

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""When the rich wage war it's the poor who die. George Bush didn't send his daughters, nieces, and nephews. George Bush, like Saddam should be tried in a world court for his crimes against world humanity. America is the greatest country in the world, but at what cost. Approximately every 5 years the United States engages its working-class citizens in a conflict in which families from both sides of the war are destroyed. Who is to blame? The Zionist controlled media, The Goats in Washington, AIPAC, Fundamentalism Islam,... We are portrayed as Nazi Bullies around the world even inside the continent which we reside. Wake up, educate yourselves!!!""
Cpl. Joe Warwick of Macon, GA

""I knew Jakub from Maine East Football. I got to know him well when we were both on varsity, him a year younger. Jakub was among the most positive people I have ever known. He was relentlessly pure heart on the field and very humble. I send my deepest condolences to the family. ""
of Niles, IL

"I was with Kowalik on the day he passed, he was a good Marine, friend, and spades player. I saw a article on CNN today that made me look to remember him, the location we were, and the day. It was 9 days after my birthday, he took my post for me in Iraq on my birthday, what a guy! Your son will always be missed and never forgotten. God Bless the family of Kowalik.

Jason McCartney
Jason McCartney of San Francisco, CA

"I Love you "Cpl.Kowalik" Who you were to Me. AKA: "The Good Son"
Cpl.Paul Becks Mom
C/P Cali,Serra Mesa.Now living in the Northwoods of WI. I knew you were with me Always, in Spirit on the Base. I know your Spirit reside with me Here.
I know you are With God. I am always Grateful For God who keeps you, Where you are and in Spirit Among all Who Love you in design Where they are. Amazing Entity, the Spirit. Yes? I know you to be alive and Well.
Thank you to All who have contributed to this page, I was so Glad to have found it today. Thank you to who "Gave it All!"
Carla lee Beck of Prentice,WI

""To the family of Jakub Henryk Kowalik ,I am so sorry for the loss of your love one.He died a hero.May you know the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Hopefully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need someone to pray with you or talk to please call or write my pastor at Gateway Community Church,Rev John B Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd. Covington Ga. 30016 phone 770-787-1015""

"Kuba was my cousin an awesome cousin. All though we didnít spend a lot of time together as we should have we had good times. Kuba loved fishing I remember last time we wore fishing in Kenosha, WI, when I had to wake him up when he was taking a nap in a car and at that time in the million years I would never have guessed that that would be our last time together and it has been five years god bless you R.I.P bro."
Lukasz Rosa of Addison, IL

"i wanted to say that the ceremony that was held at Maine East was very sad and me and my buddies that are going to the Marines this Summer were about to cry. I didnt know your son but knowing that he was a Senior and he went to the Marines after his senior year made me almost cry because im going to leave with my buddy on June 9th and im not going to see my friends and family and not only that but im going to give my summer up to. just writing this is making me tear up a little. I want to thank you for having that ceramony at Maine East.
Phil Zielinki of Niles, IL/Cook

"Life is full of crazy things and some are good, you have to live life day by day.
It depends on the way that you look at things; you have to look at the positive things that happen in life, the things that brighten youíre your day the things make you smile.
Like when you look at the happiness on peoples face when you get something you love, or see someone you love.
I think that all people hate losing things.
I hate when I lose something or someone I love, someone that means the world to me.
Life is just one big jigsaw puzzle that you have to put together, but sometimes canít because there are pieces missing because of the things or people we have lost.

Vanessa Ostrow"
Vanessa Ostrow of Illinois

"Jacob, I didnt know you as long as most, but the time we spent together as friends was amazing. I have never known someone with as much spirit, heart, and determination. I cannot believe its been 5 years. To this day when i think about it it makes me cry we lost someone as special as you. Its hard to admit, especially since we are suppose to be hard *'s. I will never forget you, you have shown me desire and willingness to do the impossible. I love you and will never forget about you bro!"
Donny Woepse of Bismarck, ND

"January 19, 2008
To the family of Lance Cpl. Jakub Henryk Kowalik:
Jakub 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

"God Bless you"
Matthew Roediger of St.Louis, Missouri

I would like to say thank you to you and the other Marine who was also killed in that explosion for your service and sacrifice for our Country. And to your family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

Semper Fi Devil Dog!"

"I remember Jakub as a little boy growing up with my brother John. We were neighbors and he often came to our house after school. He was such a well-behaved and polite young man and my favorite out of my brother's friends. Thank you Jakub for serving our country. May the beautiful memories of Jakub stay in our hearts forever and remember that we will reunite with him again one day."
Destenee Zachary of Niles, IL

"Congratulations on becomng a citizen Pivo. We miss you. YATYAS.
Semper Fidelis,
Cpl Hauser of Camp Pendleton

"I had the priviledge of spending a lot of time with jakub at Camp Anderson as well. We are from the same state, and we served together in Iraq. My thoughts and prayers are with his family, but most of all I know he's resting in a better place and is in good hands. God bless you Jakub"
Gerardo Garcia of West Chicago IL

"My name is Cameron Schilling and I have started “Portrait of a Soldier” which donates a portrait sketch of every Illinois soldier who has fallen in Iraq or Afghanistan. All 122 sketches will be on display for a Memorial Day Presentation in Chicago, Illinois on May 26-31 at the James R. Thompson Center in downtown Chicago. After the ceremony the sketches will be given to the immediate families of the Illinois soldiers. I would invite any friends or family members to come and honor these men and women from Illinois who have given their lives to our country. For more information please contact OperationHomeFront.org at 866-417-8889 which is an organization headed by the Lt. Governor Pat Quinn of Illinois who is in charge of the Memorial Day Presentation. Thank You.

Please check out www.portraitofasoldier.org
To contact Cameron email cameronschilling84@hotmail.com
To contact Operation Home Front call 866-417-8889"
Cameron Schilling of Charleston, Illinois

"will always remember the fun we had cruzing the beach and partying with all the beach bunnies. The vacations we had planned. if i could do it all again, i would have been there right with you till the end. RIP bro. with much respect, josh"
joshua egelhoff of victorville ca usa

"My name is Cameron Schilling. I am a college student from central Illinois. I am the first generation of my family not to serve his country. I am extremely grateful for the sacrifice you and your loved one has given for the United States. I am disappointed by the way the news media has covered this war and the deaths of our youth. The media has stopped listing the names of the soldiers killed in Iraq and people only talk about the soldiers when we reach a specific milestone in deaths. If you just started watching the news today you would not even know there is a war going on. Partisan politics have replaced coverage of our young generation who have traveled to a foreign land in the name of the United States. Whether you believe the war in Iraq is wrong, right, justified or not everyone should pay even just a little more attention to what these young men and women are sacrificing. This is what I would like to do. I want to do my part in honoring these soldiers and their memories. Along with being a college student I am also a budding artist. I draw pencil portraits of local people in my community. I want to offer a pencil portrait sketch to the immediate family of every Illinois soldier killed in Iraq. Please contact me at cameronschilling84@hotmail.com."
Cameron of Illinois

"To the Family of LCpl. Jakub Kowalik:
My friends and I have constructed a memorial to the service men and women from Wisconsin and Illinois who have died in Iraq which includes, as of 7/12/05, 112 crosses and Stars of David. We would like your permission to put Jakub's name on one of them.
We have called our display "Arlington Midwest" and it is located in Wisconsin Dells, WI.
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 visit Arlington Midwest. I can send you directions and some pictures by email.

"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

"I pray that God will keep your son, Jakub close by his side. We all thank him for his bravery. Maybe we are related?"
Karen Kowalik karenspond@comcast.net of Glen Ellyn, IL

"Jake (kuba) was truely like a brother to me. His mom and my dad dated for a couple of years, and were best friends for the years before that. I grew up with Jake as if he were my blood brother. He always watched out for me and reassured me he would kill anyone that ever hurt me haha. He was and is an amazing person, and i will never forget him. Losing him was one of the hardest tragadies ive gone through in my life, but he did this for his country. I love you Jake, and ill never forget you. You have one of the biggest hearts i know and you deserve to be in a happy peaceful place. I love you"
Kasia of Mt Prospect

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

"I knew Jakub through out our younger years in junior high and high school. He was a great friend and im sure he was an even greater marine. I was in iraq myself when i heard the news, it was very hard sometimes to go on and realize what the big picture was and why we were there. Let me just say that Jakub gave his life for the freedom of others far away and for those back home. To Jakubs family, i am truley sorry for your loss and i will keep you in my prayers, to jakub, i'll miss you bro. See you when i get there."
Airman First Class Bastanipour, Amir of 52nd SF Spangdahlem Air Base Germany

"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.
At the beginning of the year and when it ends, 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 Soldier! We will NEVER FORGET!!"
The Grogan Family of Lakeland, TN

"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.
At the beginning of the year and when it ends, 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 Soldier! We will NEVER FORGET!!"
The Grogan Family of Lakeland, TN

"Jakub, you truely are one of the most important people in my life. Your friendship is one that I will always cherish. You're heart was bigger than anything anyone could imagine. I think about you everyday, and will continue to. I miss you so much, and couldn't be any more proud of you...I love you, Kuba, and I miss you. I'll see you when I get there...."
Katie Smith of Glenview Il

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

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

"For Jakub's mother....I am so sorry for the loss of your precious boy."
LIsa, MMO of Rolling Meadows, IL

"This is a message I want you to send to all the families of all the soldiers whose lives were forfeited in President Bush’s little skirmish in the desert: I was named after my father’s best friend, Ralph Carpenter, who died in Vietnam in 1966. I am a living memorial to friendship, something that fills me with honor. But it fills me with sadness to think that the entire impetus behind my name is a young man dying halfway around the world to protect American freedom when the real threat was here, at home, in the form of demagogues in High Towers whose view of human life is any sane person’s perception of fodder. I didn’t know Jakub, just as I never knew Ralph “Randy” Carpenter. And in both cases, I feel that I am—that WE are—all the poorer."
Randy Roth of Palatine, IL

"Jake "the snake" was my brother and my best friend, he gave me a spurkle to the day and he still does. I think about him everyday and thank him for the sucrifice he made for us and people of Iraq. I woluld like to thank all of the friends of Jake and people who wrote to him. Me and my Mom are doing well, we are very strong just like Jake was. We are all connected thru Jake."
Paul Kowalik of Chicago, IL, USA

"To The Loved Ones Of Jakub,
Kakub was a good friend to all of us before and during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He upheld everything the Marine Corps stood for and was a very outstanding Marine. There were endless nights in the barracks at Camp Pendleton when we were up all night talking about our families and eating the Polish chocoalate his mom sent him in the packages. I considered him more than just a drinking buddy but one of my best friends. "Kuba" you are not going to be forgot by me or the rest of the YAT YAS Crew. You kept us going when we were exhausted and you made us smile when we were down. Thank you for everything. Take care homie. To Jakub's family in Schuamburg, IL, I have been trying to send you pictures of Jakub and his unit when we were in Kuwait and Iraq. I can't seem to get then information through the Marine Corps. If you can please e-mail me at usmccatura@yahoo.com"
LCpl Daniel Catura of Camp Pendleton, CA, USofA

"Jakub you have the strongest spirit. When an obstacle was difficult and seemingly impossible to overcome, immediately, without hesitation or second thought, you would say something and whatever was too hard to do would be DONE. Jacob your spirit lives forever and gives anyone who has felt it power and sheer determination that is not of this world. Brother, you will be remembered in this world and in all the worlds to come."
Michael Kulov of Chicago, IL

"Jakub (Koobie) was one of the best kids I have ever known. I played football with him in High School. He was a great friend to many people. He always had the mentality of "others before himself". He hardly ever played in games, those who knew him in HS knew he was a small guy, but he ALWAYS put his 120% in for the "better of the team" by being at practice no matter how tired or how much he wanted to be somewhere else. He was just that kind of man... I loved him with all of my heart and he is missed. I love u buddy, you've touched my life, and I will never forget you."
Big Steve Cuchra of Niles, IL USA

"I will always remember Jakub as a really great and inspiring person. He not only let sunshine into my life but many others lives. He left to the marines a boy but came back a man. I will remember him for his mothers eyes, and his fathers smile. My heart is always with his mother Danuta. She is like a second mother to me, always will be. My thoughts and heart are always with her.. My family always hold Jakub and her close to their heart... May my darling Kuba rest in peace.. And we all know that he will never be far from our hearts... :)"
Teresa Ostrow of Niles, Il

"Thank you Jakub Kowalik, 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

"I was Jakub's Fire Team Leader when the war first started. We were guarding the outter peremeter of Camp Anderson, Iraq and he volunteered to stay up the fist night filling sandbags to better fortify our position. He put 110% of his energy into everything he did. He was an unselfish person, even going as far as to give his last cigarette away to another Marine in our group. He was an outstanding Marine and he is missed by myself and the other Marines who were in our Fire Team, Company and Battalion. I will always remember him.
The prayers of myself and my family are with the Kowalik family.
Semper Fidelis, Brother."
Cpl Frank R. Pacino of Camp Pendleton, CA, United States

"Jakub was a very good cousin to me. We went to school together and spet our time fishing on the weekends. I will always keep the good memories in my heart."
Agnieszka Rosa of DesPlaines

"I will always remember Jakub as a great friend. He was always happy and he could always make anyone laugh. I miss him more than I could ever imagine and pray everyday that his family can get through this. You never know how much it hurts to lose someone you love until it happens to you. My heart goes out to Jakubs family. I love him and I miss him so much. I will never forget him. He will always be our hero."
Kristin of Mount Prospect, IL

"Jakub was a good person, I feel your pain and I feel sorry for you and the whole family. I went to Maine East HS with him, graduated in 2000. I pray for him everyday and to the Kowalik family may he RIP."
Mike Stec

"I will always remember Jakub and the laughter he gave his family and friends. He was always there when you needed him. He will stay in our hearts, forever. God bless and keep you, Jakub!
I will always love and remember you."
Rebecca of Niles,Il

"Jacub was a good friend"
Frank of Chicago, Il

Jakub will alwyas be in our hearts. He will be truly missed by all and never forgotten. He always managed to put a smile on my face back in High School. May God be with You."
Iza McNiel of Virginia Beach, VA

"To the family and friends of Lance Cpl. Jakub Kowalik:
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 Jakub for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"We thank you for the sacrafice Jakub made for us. Our prayers are with your family during this difficult time. Thank you brave soldier!"
Ken and Maritza Holley of Pembroke Pines, Florida

"This young man's bravery will be remembered. We all thank you and are endebted to you for your fight for freedom. Rest in peace."
Souvigney family of Antioch, TN

"To the family and friends of Lance Cpl. Jakub Kowalik:
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 Jakub, 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