Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Spc. Gary L. Reese, Jr.

22, of Ashland City, Tennessee.
Reese died of injuries sustained on August 13, 2005, in Tuz, Iraq, while he was conducting a mounted patrol his HMMWV came under attack by enemy forces using rocket-propelled grenades and small arms fire. He was assigned to the Army National Guard's 3rd Squadron, 278th Armored Cavalry Regiment, McMinnville, Tennessee. Died on August 14, 2005.

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"I never got to know you personally, but I feel like Iíve known you all my life. I know one day I will and I cannot wait for that day. I love you Lee. 😪"
Catherine of Tennessee Ridge, Tn

"I had the honor of serving with Sergeant Gary J. Reese, Jr. from 2002 until his death in 2005. SGT Reese had the unique ability to brighten up the day. He always had a smile and when he entered the room or came over to the group it was hard not to catch his smile and good mood. I always knew that a laugh and joke was probably not too far behind the smile as SGT Reese could inevitably find humor in what was transpiring. SGT Reese was a model soldier who although he always seemed happy was always focused on getting the mission done. Gary was the type of person whom I knew would one day make a great father and leader in the community, and perhaps far beyond. It was comforting to know that there were still young men of Gary�s caliber there for our nation. His loss was a true tragedy that is still felt today. I often think about SGT Reese and know that many others do also. He can never be replaced but I pray that we will all work to keep a land where little baby boys can someday grow up to carry on the work that SGT Gary L. Reese, Jr. would have wanted us to do. I also pray that although our hearts are saddened by his loss, that we will always remember to keep a smile that can help others along as he did for so many of us."
Robert S. Nakamoto of Nashville, Tennessee

"I will be honoring Gary on a walk this Wed. Dec. 11, 2019 - I walk to honor our fallen heroes. www.iwalk4them.com
We will never forget you sir."
Tim French of Crossville, TN./USA

"Lee, you'd be 34 tomorrow hard to believe you've been gone nearly 12 years. Miss you everyday. Love you soooo much. Mom"
Cathy Reese

"Lee, mom and I miss you so much. This was a tough Memorial day, more so than any recent. We look forward to that glorious day we see you again and this time it will be forever. Love You Son!"
Gary L.Reese Sr. of Ashland City ,TN.

"Jan.25,2016 HAPPY BIRTHDAY SON. It's been 10 years and 5 months since you left us. Miss you everyday. Love you up to the sky and pass it. We all miss you sooooo much, Mom."
Cathy Reese of Ashland City, Tenn

"Gary Lee Reese Jr. is my son and I would like to clarify some misinformation on this page. Gary was actually Sgt Gary Lee Reese Jr., not Spc. He along with 2 other soldiers were lost in a IED incident outside of Tuz, Iraq on Aug. 13th, 2005. Cathy and I are forever grateful to God for 22 years with our precious son. An honor and a privilege to have Lee as our son! I can't wait till we meet again son and we will! Always in mom and dad's heart."
Gary Lee Reese Sr. of Ashland City, TN.

"Lee, 10 years ago today. Miss you everyday. Love you sooooo much.
Cathy Reese of Ashland City, Tn

"It's been almost 10 years since you left us. We think about you everyday and miss you. We wonder who you'd be today. Love you much. MOM AND DAD"
Cathy Reese of Ashland City, Tenn

"I was so greatful to serve with your son. I served in M-Co. for 17 years and got to know Gary very well. He was a great soldier and a freind. He will be dearly missed."
SFC Poteet , Charles C of Lebanon,Tn.Wilson

"In Honor to your Life we never forgot"
Luis O.Aponte of Clarksville,TN

"Happy Birthday Brother 25 January 2013"
Luis Orlando Aponte of Clarksville,TN

"To the family of:Gary L. Reese, Jr.
I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. My heart cries out for you in your grief and you have my thoughts and prayers. He died a hero defending freedom. May you have the peace and understanding that only comes from God. Prayerfully we will all meet in Heaven one day where we will rest in the arms of Jesus. If you need prayer or need someone to talk to, please call or write my pastor: Rev. John Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd., Covington, GA 30016. (770)787-1015.
Your friend in Jesus Christ, Polly Ballew Covington,Ga""

"To the family: inspired by Gary, and a bridge north of Ashland City named in his honor, is a song called "Michael Kelly's Bridge" by the Country duo Hometown News. It can be heard at myspace.com/hometownnews"
Scott Whitehead (scott@grassrootspromotion.com) of Ashland City, TN

"July 4, 2008
To the family of Spc. Gary L. Reese, Jr.:
Gary 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

""Only 2 entities have ever offered to die for you, Jesus Christ, and the American Soldier. One died for your soul, the other one died for your freedom."
I didn't know Gary Reese, but I and my wife and my 5 children owe our freedom and our way of life to him and his fellow service men and women.
Your sacrafice did not go unnoticed, and your memory will remain untarnished."
Micah Rickman of Nampa, Idaho USA

"To my fallen friend I will miss you forever"
Spc. Edwards,Jason of Ripley,TN

"25 January 2008 Your Birthday,To my Brother Gary Lee, Here iam Thinking of you" you sure be 25 Today and is been 3 years since you left to a better place to be with God,I just want to let everyone know that i will never forget you I thanks God for let me be your friend and to let me know you,How i will ever forgot you my bunk body for almost 1 year,All that good time we spend training together and fithing together for the safe of our country you will always be a true hero that give it all for this country,My God always Bless you Happy Birthday Brother..Ssgt.Aponte Luis Orlando"
Ssgt.Aponte Luis of Clarksville,TN

"Its been over two years now and I still keep wondering why it is me instead of you that is here. Not a day goes by that I dont wish that you were here. Special days like 9/11, Veterans day, and Memorial day gives me a heavy heart and a huge sense of pride for you and all of our brothers and sisters lost so far. I can promise that you will NEVER be forgotten.You are MY Hero."
Formerly Spc Lester L Weatherholtz Co M 3/278 of Mount Juliet Tn

"I can't believe you've been gone nearly 2 years now son. At first I didn't see how I could go on. Your mother and I lost part of our heart when you left us. As time has passed I came to understand that this is just temporary and one day we will re-unite with you and nobody will be able to take that away. You are and always will be my hero and I thank God for the opportunity to say that I am your father. Mom and I love you always."
Gary Lee Reese sr of Ashland City,Tennessee/USA

"No words can take away the grief that you feel. Please know that I grieve with you and for you.
A Vietnam Vet - USAF '71-75"
Jerry Minchew of Chattanooga, TN, USA

"I didn't know Spc Reese, but having served with Trp I 3/278 ACR I still feel as though I have lost a brother. God bless you and your family for the sacrifice you have made for our defense."
Shaun D. Taylor of Lincoln, Nebraska

"soldiers from m company 3/278 acr miss you everyday god has a plan you are a hero and that cannot be denied"
spc. kenneth p. freeman of white house tn

"Gary was a very outgoing man. he always made us laugh in bunker 10. although we were from different towns we soon became friends. Gary gave the ultimate sacrifice so the people of America may live free. You will always be missed. CPL Jeramy Caldwell, your brother in arms. E TRP.2/278TH 3RD. PLT."
Cpl Jeramy Caldwell of Newport, TN

"You will never be forgotten, I think of you every single day, it will never get easier and that day will never go away, the only peace that I have is knowing that you are in an awesome place with God."
Cpl. John N. Zurcher of Sevierville Tennessee/ E-Trp

""Thank you so much for honoring our country I know you will be at peace". I am so grateful that we still have wonderful people in the world today! I want to thank all the fallen service men and to the ones still fighting. THANK YOU"
Brandi Minix of Kingston Springs, TN

"My name is SGT Kim Rose and I served as a Medic with 2/278th at FOB Bernstein.

SPC Reese was always my shining light, no matter how grim the times. I was there the night that the Lord called Reese home and it is a time that I will never forget.

I will never forget the times that I spent in Iraq, nor will I ever forget my buddy Reese. My heart and prayers are forever with his family and friends.

"Blessed are the Peacemakers""
SGT Kim Rose of Knoxville, TN

"I knew Lee all his life. He was such a good kid! What a terrible shame to have such a shining star extinguished."
Janie Dillingham of Tuscaloosa, Alabama

"SPC. Gary Reese, You will always be remembered. You were and always will be our brother in the E-Troop family. It was an honor to serve with you. May God bring peace to for family and friends."
2ND Platoon E-Troop 2/278 RCT Iraq of Morristown, TN

leonard_wahl@hotmail.com of Spring Texas

"Lee was my best friend. The impact he had on my life has changed me forever. Im proud to say he way my friend. Thank you to our the soldiers that fight for our freedoms, and especially the ones that give their lives doing it"
julie weatherford of ashland city, tn/us

"I am deeply saddened to find that my former co-worker is no longer here. I was devistated when I asked about him only to be told that God has called him home. I quickly refected on how often he kept me laughing!! He will be missed.
My thoughts and prayers go out to his family that God keeps tem and continues to comfort them in their time of need. Though plenty of time has passed by and the days become easier to bare, I know in your hearts LEE is right there!! God Bless"
Jackie Leverett of Alpharetta, GA Verizon Wireless

"reese. i remember all the missions we went on. all the times you would play soccer with the kids. those are the memories i will always have. take care your brother always. joseph lee holland joseph.lee.holland@us.army.mil"
joseph holland of morrison tn

"my name is sgt chad chambers i lived and worked with sgt gary reese in iraq. we shared the sme bunker #10 and also became very god friends in the time we spent together. i just want to let everyone know hat gary was a very good person, soldier and friend he is missed everyday by members of our platoon as well as others. i also would like to let his fa,ily know that if there is ever anything that i can do for them to please let me know. i thought of gary as a brother and will miss him significantly. he is and always will be a true hero."
chad chambers of asheville nc

"My name is Sean Tilley and I lived in bunker 10 at FOB Bernstein with all the guys of 2nd Platoon. Gary Lee was a great young man that never backed down from any mission. I know because we rubbed shoulders more than a few times on QRF, while pulling guard in the streets of TUZ. He is a true hero and will never be forgotten. If any of the family read this and would like some pictures of Gary(Reesecup)please contact me at: tanker278rct@yahoo.com."
SGT Sean Tilley of Strawberry Plains TN

"The Salute

To those who have died,
And to those who have cried.
We Salute You.

To those who have lost,
Paid the ultimate cost.
We Salute You.

And to those who still serve,
The Red White and Blue.
Our grateful Nation,
Proudly Salutes You."
Tom Balstad of West Warwick RI

"We are deeply sorry for your loss. The Courage, Honor, and Valor that your
Hero showed will always be remembered.
We are grateful for the loyal service and sacrifice that was made and
Our cousin LCPL Michael Smith Jr. gave his life on 4-17-04 fighting for freedom.
Please know that this was not in vain and these American Heros will FOREVER be honored.
God Bless your family and please know that you are not alone.
All of our prayers are with you."
Jennifer and SSGT Larry Mays of Massillon, Ohio

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

"Thank you Gary Reese, Jr., you will not be forgotten. Your bravery goes beyond words. I want to express my deepest gratitude for your sacrifice. To the family and friends, my prayers and deep condolences in your loss. May God strengthen you from knowing that fellow Americans and people around the world care about you and grieve with you in your loss. God bless you all. A very appreciative fellow American,"
Leo Titus of Grayslake, Illinios

"To the family and friends of Spc. Gary Reese, Jr.:
May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you and we feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Gary for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us."
The Ford Family of Wells, Nevada

"To the family and friends of Spc. Gary Reese, Jr.:
I am saddened by the loss of your loved one. He will always be remembered as a hero for fighting for freedom. I hope that this website will be a source of comfort and encouragement for you during this difficult time, and in the future as you recall the memories of Gary, 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