Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Spc. Jonathan J. Santos

22, of Whatcom, Washington.
Santos died in Karabilah, Iraq, when a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle. He was assigned to the 9th Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychological Operations Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Died on October 15, 2004.

Please send information, photos, and corrections for Army Spc. Jonathan J. Santos.


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

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"Never forgotten"
Matt Lansberry of Mt. Airy, MD (Bellingham - 2001)

"Whats up ugly! I am besides myself around this time of the yr... 2 more days marks the moment... in which all our lives changed... justins jareds auntie doris uncle les... and the rest of us... that dont change the fact that ur still ugly :-P love u man... i miss u like u have no idea... kinda jealous too... u get auntie val auntie annie, auntie ann reyes, and gramma... u got the best ones dude... im not gnna drag this one out like i have in the past... just wanted u to know that no matter how many yrs go by u are deeply loved and missed... and one more thing.. watch over my boy please... i mean u know what i mean punk like i mean what i mean when i mean it :-P love u right on, dig it !!!"
T Santos of Mesquite TX

"Sup wit it lil cuz... fk I miss u bro... I salute u everyday man.. I know u watch over me.. hug gramma for me and auntie annie.. I miss u like a crazy psycho stalker cuz... ill see u one day... ill make sure to bring the gummi bears... I love u..."
T. Santos of Mesq, Texas

I'll never forget the push-ups we did in AIT because we couldn't stay awake in class. You were always a good teammate."
Greg of USA

"I just wanted to say that I retired last year from the army after 21 years. I Geocache and there is a cache near the memorial park in Bellingham and I took a picture with the bench that was dedicated to this fine Soldier and Son. I am sorry for your loss and even though it has been so many years I am sure it is still painful. Bless you and his family."
Michael Rhodes Sergeant First Class (Ret) of Puyallup, WA

"You are not forgotten"
MAJ Leigh Palmer

"Happy 28th Birthday, Jon!

You said the Army would never take another one from you, and you were right. We all still celebrate :X:X:X"
Jan of Santa Cruz, CA

"I am so moved and touched by the documentary.I cried my eyes out this morning watching it. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I am so grateful my son came home from Iraq ok. Lots of love to you and yours. Thank you for sharing and we will never forget Jonathan and the other soldiers.
Love and God Bless you!""
Lynne Henderson of Dunedin, Fl

"”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 you. We are a 501c3 nonprofit organization! Over 1,750 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!
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

"To the Santos family, Your courage inspires all of us. I also a soldier have lost loved ones in this war! I know there is nothing I can say to ease your pain I just want you to know you are all in my prayers. Thank you for sharing your sons diary with the world, the world is a better place because of him."
Daniel Harris of Colorado Springs. Colorado

"Jon, I've been thinking about you a lot lately. I am back in Iraq again and it just makes it so much easier for those memories to come to the surface. I don't have the right words, but I just wanted to say I'm sorry. Sometimes you just don't appreciate someone fully until they are gone forever. Be at peace, brother. I pray you are in a place where you can hear my voice and that you know how much you are missed."
Russ of Baghdad

"I was touched to tears watching Johathans story and am reminded by my own Vietnam experience, my fathers WWII combat, my grandfathers combat in WWI and three great great uncles who died in Civil War battles. Freedom is not free and if I could reenter service today I would do so. Johathans ultimate sacrifice is a reminder to all of us that we pay a high price for the lives we enjoy today. I pray for the family of Johathan and would like to see a follow up to find out what direction his brothers have or will take. Will they join the military as a tribute to there fallen brother? What an amazing man Johathan was and knowing such men existed reaffirms what we stand for morally and and blesses all Americans for his unselfish service."
Ron Rodd of Fremont, California USA

"I saw Jonathan's story today on TV and needless to say I was touched. I thank Jonathan and his comrads for the sacrifice they made for our freedom. I have 2 young boys age 9 and 7 who also watched and I think it is important for them to understand that there are unselfish people in this world, like Jonathan, who care about our country and our freedom. The real role models the children need to look up to today and model themselves after aren't singers, sports players, American Idols or the people on the cover of vanity magazines, but rather Jonathan and people like him! Jonathan you and your family are in our prayers.

With love and respect,

Chuck, Robin, Reese and David Murphy"
Chuck Murphy of Philadelphia, PA

"I saw Jonathan's documentary this morning. I am from Canada and have a cousin deployed in Iraq with the Marines, a friend deployed in Afghanistan with the Canadian forces and a friend who's brother was killed in action fighting with the Canadian forces in Afghanistan. Jon's film was one of the most moving things I've ever seen. Your family is in my prayers. Every day, the least I can do is ensure that the sacrifices of those who put on their country's uniform are not forgotten."
Adam of Toronto Canada

"i just saw the touching docu about jonathan.i am from the UK,but i recognise and respect the scarifice that US soldiers such as jonathan are making for all of us,in the western world.
Jonathan was an incredibly brave guy,but i would also like to comment the admirable actions of his mother and brothers in sharing his story with the world.
He,and others like him,who have given all in the name of liberty,will never be forgotten."
kat of mids,UK

"I respect and honor Jonathan for his honorable and selfless service to his country and to the innocent people in Iraq. I imagined myself, my brothers, my father and my mother in place of his family and I couldn't take it. I watched the documentary chronicling his and his comrades lives in Iraq and I got to see his character and the character of his comrades and the fun times they had. May GOD bless the innocents and strike down and show ultimate judgment against the
evil-doers in the world."
James L of Boise Idaho US

"I saw the documentary about Jonathon on tv last night, I wanted to write and thank you for sharing a moving tribute to a wonderful young man, and to extend my thoughts, prayers and hopes to you, your family and others who have lost children, husbands, wives, mothers and fathers to this war. I hold all of our service members in the highest esteem for their commitment and patriotism."
Alice B of weaverville, CA , USA

"Wow, I didn't realize how far Jon has now touched. Thanks for all the good stories I get to hear from the friends that you grew up with and I now get the luxury of hanging with. You know who you all are. See ya on the flip side, and I hope that keg that was on ice is still there when I get where you are."
Erik Favro of Bellingham, WA

"i just watched the documentary on jonathan j. santos...even though it was 4 year's ago....i was deeply moved by the way he documented his service in iraq back in 2004....this was a very special rememberance to him and his friend's he served with.....i give my deepest condolences....positive thinking....jeff"
jeff ross of vancouver, B.C., canada

"September 29, 2008
To the family of Spc. Jonathan J. Santos:
Jonathan 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

"Jon. I will love you forever."
Alex Lor of los angeles, ca

"I think of Jon often he was one of the few people who went out of there way to be a friend of mine. My most significant memories are of Thanksgiving in Fayetteville and a crazy climb over a barbed wire fence at Fort Hunter Ligget, Ca. And of course the letter I got from Jon a few days after I heard he had been killed. To Jon and those who loved him. I will never forget.
Also I have some video of Jon in California if anyone connected to Jon wants it. will.lock@us.army.mil"
william lockard of Somerset, pa

"Jon I think about you and Mike everyday. I want you to know that you are missed and never forgotten. Whenever I think about you I remember the time my detachment and I got you in our office and attempted to "ball" you up. You put up one hell of a fight. Miss you man.........and I'm doing well in college now."
Johnny Grieger of Macomb, Il

"Hello Jon, Its been 3 years now and I am doing what you intended to do, going to college. I will never forget your sacrafice and your memory is very much alive in my heart. I have the deepest respect for you and my prayers go out to your family. miss you making us all laugh.."
Jacob Miller of Boulder, Colorado

"We continue to pay tribute and say Prayers for You and your family, Especially at this time of year. we will light candles at St. Pauls for Jonathan, Doris,Chris,Justin and Jerad this year and for years to come.
BraveHearts,dear Friends, BraveHearts.
As a US combat veteran I salute you Jonathan, and offer my dedication and support to your family, this day and all days.
You served,You led, You gave all you had, I Pray that Your sacrifice will never be taken for granted.
GodBless You and your family.
I will see you again some day."
The Darlings Jim,Rieko &Jason of Bellingham,WA

"We continue to pay tribute and say Prayers for You and your family. Especially at this time of year. we will light candles at St. Pauls for Jonathon, Doris,Chris,Justin and Jerad this year and for years to come.
BraveHearts,Dear Friends, BraveHearts."
The Darlings Jim,Rieko &Jason of Bellingham,WA

"Man, you paid the ultimate price. Words cannot express my sadness in hearing of your death. You wont be forgotten my friend.

Dalen McMillon
Dalen of Spokane WA USA

A few years have passed, but here I am... thinking and keeping you in memory as well as others. None of us will forget. Thanks for the ultimate sacrifice and those memories you pool shark!
God bless..."
Trish Wyman of Fort Bragg, NC

"hey buddy, know you cant read this but it sucks that yer gone even if you did try and pull that scam in april at sehome. take care and see you next time around the campfire, you'll be missed buddy..."
Tim Wiles of Bellingham WA /

"Thank you brother. I will always remember the laughs."
Gregg of Salt Lake City (formerly FT Bragg)

"To the family of Jonathan please contact me ... Ive been trying since the attack to reach you ... I was the first one on the deck that mouring ... my email is oierin@hotmail.com ... I want to talk to you about my account of that day that like you forever changed my life"
Cpl. Rangel USMC of BP Vera Cruz, Iraq

Jon was my PSYOP Specialist and driver for almost a year. We trained together and deployed to Haiti as a team. We lived together in some miserable conditions there, but we had a lot of great times together watching movies, playing football with the Marines, and traveling through the country. He wanted to be an assistant team leader and was certainly deserving of the position. Although I hated to see him leave my team, it would've been selfish to keep him. He was a great soldier, one of the best in 950. I am proud to have known and served with Jon. It has been over a year since his passing, but I still think about him often. Jon had so much potential and his loss will surely be felt throughout the PSYOP community. My deepest sympathies go out to his family. His death was not in vein and his sacrifice will never be forgotten."
SSG Robert A. Hajny of Fayetteville, NC

"To Jonathan and Family,

I just want to say how sorry I was to hear that Jonathan paid the ultimate price for our freedom. I was one of Jonathan's recruiters in Bellingham, WA and he is also a good friend to my nephew, Christopher. It was Christopher who told me what happened. May God bless you and your family and your deeds will never be forgotten, you are trully my hero. Lest we forget."
Staff Sergeant Derek Duplisea of 101st ABN DIV (OIF III Iraq)

"Dear Jon, even though I don't really know you, I had the honor to wrestle you. I think we had a really close match where you barely beat me. I'm glad that people with really strong work ethics like you serve our military. I knew you were a hard worker just from the way you wrestled. God bless!"
John Chang of Shoreline, WA

"I am a senior at sehome high school and also know Jonathan's brother, Jared. When one of our teachers stood up today to talk about Jonathan and realized I felt more sad than I have just about ever felt, especially for Jared. We all wonder why things like these happen, its certainly not fair. Bless Jared and his family."
of Bellingham, Washington

"I dont know what to say to something as sad as this. But I will try. I am a Junior at Sehome High School and today is Veterans Day. We had an assembly honoring the brave men and women that fought for our country. During this assembly one of our teachers stood up and talked about Jonathan. Even though I didn't know him, I know his brother Jared, and I felt a great saddness for his family. I just wanted to say that you are not alone in this and my heart goes out to your family. God Bless."
Anonymous of Bellingham Washington

"Jon, you came into our lives and went. You were always special and gifted. For whatever reason, you had a calling above and we miss you so much. I saw the pride in what you believe and why you wanted to be there for our country. I see your smile reaching us from above. Yes, you're the greatest but I never got to tell you so. So, hear me now and know we love you very much. Be our guardian angel now and watch over your Mom, Chris and your brothers, Jared and Justin."
Auntie Rose of Whidbey Island

"Jon, September, 23 2005
Happy Golden Birthday!
God bless you and your family.

Honored wife of SSG Mike G. Owen"
Crystal Owen of Fayetteville, NC

"To the family of Jonathan J. Santos, I am so sorry for the loss of your love one. He died a hero defending freedom; May you have 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 prayer or need someone to talk to please call or write my pastor at Gateway Community Church: Rev John B. Pearrell 11677 Brown Bridge Rd. Covington, Ga phone 770-787-1015. Your friend in Jesus Christ,"
Polly Ballew of Covington Ga

"Hi Godson ... I really miss you. I knew you as a baby, a little boy, and a young man. I wish I knew you as the soldier. But I know you were among the best, and you will always be among the best. You touched everybody you met; your smile, your humor; your kind nature will forever be missed. You better be listening to your grandpa, Auntie Anne and Uncle Paul or else I'm going to come up there and kick your little butt. I love you. I miss you."
Marshall Santos of Portland, OR

"Dear Jon,
I miss ya buddy. We just got home last week and I've already noticed the void you have left behind here. It's just not the same--Coaches, your old place, Secrets...and many other places where we used to go. Thank you again for your sacrifice and remember you're missed."
Jesse of Fayetteville, NC

I am so proud of you and the sacrafices you made. I am blessed to have known you personally and enjoyed the few times you came to our house. My husband, SSG Michael Owen was also very proud of the man and solider you were. He shared with me how glad he was to have you on his team and how much he trusted you. Now I personally think we need to have a talk about when you shaved his head in Haiti but right there shows trust if he let you near his precious hair!
Since Mike's last month couldn't be spent with me I'm glad he was among friends. I'm so sorry you didn't make it home from the mission on that awful day in October. If there is anything I can do for your family and friends please don't hesitate...
SSG Michael Owen's wife
B Co. 9th PSYOP TPT 951"
Crystal Owen of Fayetteville, NC

"Dear Jon,
Words cannot describe what a great loss you were. You were loved by so many, including myself. I only wish I could've told you so while you were still alive. I did my best to honor your memory and will continue to do so. I also did my best to keep Summer from dishonoring your memory and I hope that it brought you some peace. Not many people knew the truth about her and she is a great actress, so it was tough. I will continue to watch her and anyone else who threatens your name or your family. I would've done anything for you while you were alive and I still will. I couldn't have asked for a better friend. You will always be in my heart. God bless ya "face." I'll never forget you."
Bumbling Dork of Iraq

I'm home in Grand Point, La. with my family for the holidays. We are all thinking about you and your loved ones. We know this is a very difficult time for them, and our prayers are with them as well. Merry Christmas,
SSG Johnny Matherne of Fort Bragg

SGT Boris Boisson of FL

"To my beloved cousin, Jon, whom I cry for every day to see once again. I will cherish our childhood memories and create new ones in honor of you. Your 2 yr. old neice will learn of you and someday speak of you with the memories you have left with me. You were a kind, funny, inspiring, out for an adventure type of person and I will miss you truly. I love you always!"
Vivilyn Pangelinan Cullup (cousin) of Bellingham, Wa

"Hey Jon,
This is Michelle. I miss you so much. You're a great person and you've been one of my best friends. I'll never forget the good times...I'll never forget the rough times too. Your memory will stay in my heart forever. I'll see you again someday."

I can only say that I feel lucky to have had you in our detachment for the time that I was there. You were a damn good soldier, and will not be forgotten. I wish I could have offered you more challenges, as you would have succeeded in any that were sent your way. Thanks for being a friend to everyone in the detachment, for you humor and wit, and for your ultimate sacrifice. If I ever have kids, they will know who you are.
Johnny "Tattoo" Matherne"
SSG Johnny Matherne of Fort Bragg, NC

I'm S/Sgt. Mike Owen's dad (Glenn). I just want to let you know that you, Mike and William did a wonderful thing to save so many lives. You guys are TRUE HEROE'S and will always be to alot of people you never got to meet. I miss Mike dearly and always will, something I will never get over. I know your family loved you very much and they will miss you, like I miss Mike. If you were on Mike's team, it meant alot to him to have you there and he wouldn't have had it any other way. You did a wonderful thing by giving other family's hope that their sons, daughters, wives and husbands could be returning home. WHAT A BRAVE YOUNG MAN YOU ARE!"
Glenn Owen & Family of Surprise, Arizona

"Jonathan Santos....your sacrafice has been felt all the way in california with a ex soldier that hasnt forgotten about what it meant to serve. Your sacrafice makes me want to join again in your honor. Know that what you have done will not be forgotten and that you will live on in heaven honorably. May I meet you again in the war against evil."
SPC Chad Kitzmiller of Woodland, Ca.

"Today is a sad day for all psyops soldiers, because we have lost a great warrior. you will be miss."
of ft bragg nc

"Jon, what can I say that hasn't already been said. I miss you bro, and like Jesse said we will never forget you. You will always be a brother to me, and I can't help but smile when I think back at all the good times we had. All the memories, nothing but a big smile when I think of you, and you are missed. Your friend forever,"
Carl Logan Kipp of Fort Bragg, NC

"My deepest condolences to the Family and Friends of Spc. Jonathan J. Santos,

My heart aches for you and you will remain in my thoughts and prayers. I pray that the deep hurt you feel can be in some part eased by the feeling of great pride for Jonathan’s valor and deep sense of patriotism.

Jon, you have made the ultimate sacrifice and did so willingly and without hesitation. Thank you so very much for defending my freedom. It means so much to me, to the people of NYC and to the entire nation. Thank you for your bravery and sacrifice in the service of the country that I love so very much. You will always be remembered as an American hero.

John 15:13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Most Sincerely,

Pat Shoukry"
Pat Shoukry of New York, N.Y. - USA

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

"Hey Jon-
I really miss you buddy. I thank God for the friendship that we shared, and continue to share, and promise that your memory will be with me always. To your family and friends, I offer my friendship as well. You are as a brother to me..."
Jesse William Card (friend and fellow soldier) of Iraq

We all loved you for you smile and for your sense of humor. Every time your name is spoken, it be good words. Words of how great of a person you were and always will be. We love you Jon, and miss you."
Kim Card (friend) of Utah

"To Jonathan's Family and Friends:

On behalf of the Blanco-Caldas family, we send our sincerest condolences. We share the same loss ... the same pain. Our prayers are with you in this most difficult time and we thank you for your soldier's bravery and sacrifice.


The Family of Capt. Ernesto M. Blanco-Caldas, 82nd Airborne
KIA Iraq 12/28/2003.
Gloria Caldas (The Big Ern's Mom) of San Antonio, TX

"Jonathan, you're such an amazing person. I'm proud to call you my brother. You inspired me in ways that you will never know. You always had a positive outlook on life and never complained about what type of situation you were in. You truly are a hero in my eyes and I will think about and miss you for the rest of my life. I love you. love your sister. stephanie"
stephanie gray (step sister) of camp pendleton ca usa

"Jonathan was a precious young man. He believed in what he was doing for his country. We miss him dearly but are so proud of his service to our country. Jonathan's two younger brothers always knew they had a hero in their midst. We are kept going by all the thoughts and prayers for Jon."
Chris Kent (stepfather) of Bellingham wa

"Santos was a good guy who helped train up the soldiers of the 320th PSYOP Co. who are now currently in Afghanistan. I remember him well and we all here in Enduring Freedom will remember his sacrafices. My family in Washington State also have sent their thoughts and prayers. You will be missed."
SSG Scott Holmes of Enduring Freedom

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

"To the family and friends of Jonathon...May God's grace be with you during your time of grief. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you and I feel your loss and share in your sorrow. Bless Jonathon for the sacrifice he has made to make a better life for the rest of us.""
Crystal of Camp Pendleton, CA

"My deepest sympathy, our family has also suffered the loss of a precious life in this battle for freedom. May God bless you and help you through this time. Forever in our hearts a HERO Jonathan J. Santos."
Amy & Aaron Monier of Waterford, MI.

"Thank you Jonathan Santos, 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. Jonathan Santos:
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 Jonathan 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. Jonathan Santos:
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 Jonathan, 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