Fallen Heroes of Operation Iraqi Freedom

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

Army Sgt. Ryan C. Young

21, of Corona, California.
Young died at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, D.C., of injuries sustained November 8 when an improvised explosive device hit his vehicle in Fallujah, Iraq. He was assigned to A Company, 1st Battalion, 16th Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas. Died on December 2, 2003.

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"Happy Birthday Brother"
Martin Butler of Chicago, Il

"SGT Ryan C. Young,
To a brother I only know for a short time I was just a wet eared private scared out of my mind about being there without you and the rest of Aco. I dont think I would have made it through. For you and those like us damn few love you brother."
SSG Evans, Justin T. of Savannah, GA

"Ryan, you are still missed each and everyday. I didn't know Ryan until BCT, he was my battle buddy at basic. He did fair share of getting me into trouble. Once arriving to Ft Riley, I had a soldier that always looked out for me. Ryan, was a leader and mentor. I always pushed myself to follow in his footsteps. It has been many years since we last spoke, but the impact Ryan had on me then, has helped who I have become today. RIP my friend."
Thomas Spain of Eureka, Kansas

"Brother your still missed. I finally got a hold of your dad. I spoke to him once when we got back in 2004 and its 2015 and I found him on Face Book. Iíve tried hard to speak with him but I canít do it. It still hurts just thinking of you, Gary, and Mark. I can honestly sayÖ That day changed my life forever and I live it constantly. Before you passed we were told how great you were doing and that you had the chance to spend some time with your family. Even though you were injured we thought you were going to meet us when we got back. The day that we got told that you had passed away broke our hearts. Even though itís been years since the incident we still remember you like it was yesterday. We speak of you guys often and smile when we remember the good times. Take it easy broÖ.............
22 May, 2015"

"Ryan, this November 8th 2013 will mark a time in our family's lives that will stay in our memories forever. We lost Gary (my brother) and Mark on that day. Our family was honored to have met you in the hospital on what would eventually be our last chance before December 2nd. Your picture adorns our Living Room walls along with Gary and Mark and your memory will live on in our hearts forever. Thank you for giving your life to protect ours and thank you for being with my brother in his last hour."
Donna Collins Lowder of San Antonio, Texas

You are still missed by so many! We had a lot of great times together. Wish there could have been more. You could always make everyone smile just by being you. Love you like a brother."
kenneth meyer of martinsville indiana

"Ryan, although we had never met, I knew your father as we had spent many years going to school in such a different time than now. After reading and learning what a great American soldier you were, I am honored and proud to know you gave so much to protect so many. Thank you and God bless you and your entire family."
David Kory of Tolleson, Az. USA

"Thank you so kindly to all those who have
left such heart felt messages.
for more on Ryan, go to ryanyoung.us
for photos and more. Thank you
Marvin L. young (ryans father)"
Marvin L. Young of huntsville AL

"I never want to forget the sacrifices of so many young men and women. I am so proud it makes me cry. I understand in theory only that war is a part of human nature but so is love and caring. I wish I could take the families pain away but I can't. I am committed to loving ALL people, myself and our environment. I am committed to working on my happiness everyday because so many have died for my freedom to live my life. Thank you is not enough but it is all I have. All my love and respect. ogersteiner@yahoo.com
A hundred times a day, I remind myself that my inner and outer life depends on the labors of other men, living and dead, and I must exert myself in order to give in the same measure as I have received and am receiving. - Albert Einstein"
Scott E. Steiner of Worthington, OH USA

I still member the first day we met....at Pilsbury Crossing..I got cold you gave me your shirt off your back...I got chocolate ice cream on it..it was your favorite white Hurley shirt....you just smiled...I member your smile and I can still hear your laugh...I miss you so much...Its a honor to call you my friend! I named my daughter after you...she has your blue eyes and your sense of humor...not a day goes by I don't think of you....Thank you for all the great memories you left me! You were a great friend...a damn good solider!! I miss ya Ryan. I can't wait to see you in Heaven...we can hang out like ole times! love ya and miss ya much!"
Kimberly Wilf of Ft. Rucker, AL

"Ryan, I am married to Daniel Pardo, and I know every day he misses you, We just found out we are pregnant with our final baby and no mater boy or girl its name is going to be Ryan. In memory or you. Wish i would have been able to meet you. Missing you here, Katie Pardo"
Katie Pardo of Taylorsville Ut

"Ryan....i wear your name along with collins and vasqez on my wrist on the bracalet and honor you and all my buds tatooed on my back...i knew you for the short time we were in iraq together...you always had a smile and made other people smile...ill never forget the day you left us ..we hoped that you would make it ...it was a horrible day at FOB mercury when we got the news...you and all my brothers are the first thought in my mind every morning...even though its been 5 years...love you brother robert miller (sgt miller) attack33 G robert_miller_jr90@yahoo.com"
robert miller of gillette wyoming

"I am sorry for your loss. The students for peace and Social Justice are hosting a memorial assembly at Ccentennial high the honor the fallen soldiers from corona. if you are interested in coming please e mail me at rekatross@yahoo.com Thank you for your time and we are sorry for your loss"
Geofrey Cua of Corona, CA

"hey bro, been a while since i've even spoke about nov. 08 hard to deal with, miss u man , u, gary, and mark, everyday i think of just 1 split second decision that i should have made I know your looking down upon us all smiling and jokeing like u usually do. until next christmas man, later!! to the family any ?? or closure contact me at pepaw1@ymail.com Remember the pain in a soldiers heart for a fallen friend runs deeper than any other, doesn't go away and never will!! Really what can u say except your son was a great friend, soldier, and human being, who brought smiles to everyone who knew him. deeply, and regretably sorry for your loss !!

TROY SALLEE of wilmore ky

"December 10, 2008
To the family of Sgt. Ryan C. Young:
Ryan 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

"What’s up brother? I hope all is well. It’s been 5 years and we still miss you."
SFC Garcia of FT Benning, GA.

"You were always like a brother to me, I think about you often and miss the light you always brought to even the darkest day. Ryan gave his life for something he believed in, he was always the first one that would stand up and defend those that couldnít defend themselves. Ryan wasnít a hero because of the way he died; he was a hero because of the way he lived. (Forever Young) I love and miss you my brother."
Tyler Lewis of Fontana Ca

"Just thinking of you this weekend and praising God you are with Him! We miss you & thank you for your sacrifice for our freedom!! We love you! Not a day goes by I don't feel you near me."
Maureen of Loveland, Ohio

"I still miss you everyday Ryan. My only comfort is knowing I will see you again someday!"
Maureen Ledet of Loveland, Ohio

"Reading all of these messages serves to remind me of just how loved and well respected Ryan was. It's inspiring to read.
Thank you all"
Joe Young of Corona, CA

"We miss Ryan more and more everyday. Four years ago today, so many lives were changed, and I can only pray and hope that everyone has made peace with it. I pray for all of Ryan's family. He has such a wonderful family. May God bless you always."
Laura Jennings of Kansas City, Kansas

"So sorry for the loss of another great man. I lost my brother Ryan A martin 08-20-04 so i feel the pain and hurt. I hope that the family of this man is doing ok. He did us a great service and for that reason he is gone....one word does decribe these men, "HEROS"
Email me anytime martinspitbulls@aol.com"
Stacy Martin of Wooster Ohio

""If you are able,
save them a place
inside of you
and save one backward glance
when you are leaving
for the places they can
no longer go.
Be not ashamed to say
you loved them,
though you may
or may not have always.
Take what they have left
and what they have taught you
with their dying
and keep it with your own.
And in that time
when men decide and feel safe
to call the war insane,
take one moment to embrace
those gentle heroes
you left behind.
"Major Michael Davis O'Donnell
1 January 1970
Dak To, Vietnam."
America has been built on the blood
of Heros and Brave Men of Honor.
Thank you for your service and my
freedom.. May God bring comfort
to your loved ones.
You shall never be forgotten by
a grateful nation.""
William Darby Taylor Jr. of Bonita Springs Florida

"To the family and friends of Ryan: He was a great example of all that's good about America. I got to know Ryan through my brother Jason Jennings, who served with him in Iraq. I still carry the picture of the farewell picnic we had for the guys in August of '03 before they deployed. I wear the wristband commemorating Sgts. Collins, Vasquez, and Young and proudly tell their story whenever I'm asked about it. I'm very grateful for the chance to have known Ryan and will always remember him and honor his memory. Again, thank you and may God Bless you all. He was a good man! If anybody's ever in the K.C. Kansas area, we erected a memorial at the American Legion Post #199 in Ryan's name, come by and honor him. dal743@gmail.com"
Duane Lynnes of Olathe,Ks

JP Dupras of Colorado

"To the Family of This Fallen Hero.I lost my little bother and Iraq and i know your pain....Try to remember that you will meet your lost one again one day. I wish you the best."
Stacy Martin of Wooster Ohio Usa


As a soldier you never want to hear about a fallen brother, but when you hear of not only a fallen brother but a brother from where you were born and raised it really hits you hard. I was born and raised in Corona Ca and I also graduated from Corona High. I know the hardship and the strength it takes to be an American soldier. I have been one for almost 9 years. As a wife of a military soldier I also know what it's like to be the other person waiting for there love one to return. I salute you in your fight for our freedom and for your sacrafice. You will be missed and loved by all."
SSgt "USAF" of Omaha, NE

"You are gone but never forgotten, you will forever live in the hearts of all of us whom you touched. Thank you and God bless you."
SPC. Smith Jason A. of Honolulu, HI, USA

"thank you everone for all your thoughts and prayers."

"To the family of:Ryan C. Young 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"

"May God bless you, your family and your friends for your ultimate sacrifice. Your courage and service shall never be forgotten. RIP"
E.M. of Corona, CA

"You were a great soldier, friend, brother, nephew, father and husband Ryan. Although you are gone you are always remembered and you will always be missed."
James Hughes (SGT) of Ft. Myers FL

"I knew Ryan personally as i was in the same unit as he was and we where deplyed to Kuwait together during September 11. He eventually became one of my soldiers and a true friend. I was not in the same unit as he was when he went to a better place. But it hurt me when he left us and i am still fighting here for him as a civilian. Ryan we miss you so much and i miss having you at my house and hearing your jokes that made us laugh so much we miss you brother!!!! Much condolences to his family, friends, and brothers!!! bboy_1869@yahoo.com"
Victor Lira of Mission, TX

"Ryan, we love you and miss you. We will never forget. Your family is still in our prayers everyday."
Laura Jennings of Altus, OK

"You will never be forgotten! May God Bless your loved ones!"
The Todd's of San Diego

"i went to high school with ryan young. He picked me up every day to go to school in he white camoro. he would always make jokes and turn a bad day in to a good day there not a day that gose by that i dont think about him. I tahnk him for going out the and fighting for us and or country. My brother is also a soldier in the usmc he leaves for iraq in feb 04 2006 and i pray for him and thank him and ryan for the freedom that we have today."
Fred Munoz of Corona, Ca , USA

"I wish I could've been there for you SGT. But I will never forget that day, nor you, or our other fellow Attack company guys we lost on the same day. SSG Vasquez and SFC Collins. You 3 will never be forgotten...
SGT Stubbs
T-F 1-504th PIR
Aco 116 inf"
SGT Stubbs

"I sorry I couldnt have been there for you Young, You were the best team leader. I am sorry I was not strong enough to stay."
Schrader of Spokane, Wa

"I didnt know him but he sounds like a very brave man and its sad hes gone"
zena jordan of eastliegh

"Each fallen brother weighs deeply on my heart, thank you and you for family for you willing sacrfice, you make the world what it is..."
SPC. Ryan P. Young of Richmond, KY

"To Ryans' family, I went through basic training with Ryan but never got to serve with him in a unit, but I knew him when he first decided to defend our country, and I am proud that I had the priviledge to serve with him and Want you to know that he was a great soldier and a great friend. thank you and god bless "outlaws forever""
Cpl Jeremy Stapleton of Parma,OHIO

"Thank You."
R.A.Y. of St. Louis

"On Sat. Sept 11th, I remembered all the victims of 2001 and why Ryan gave his life for us. Thank you Ryan, I love and miss you everyday!"
Maureen Ledet of San Angelo, Texas

"Ryan, thank you for your sacrifice. You will not be forgotten. I am so grateful to have heroes like you and Spc. Ray Joseph Hutchinson, who was killed December 7, 2003. My heart goes out to the families! God bless you!"
An appreciative American of Houston, TX

"Ryan was our very first grandchild and our only blood related grandson. We were so proud of him and loved him so very much. We would have given our lives for him if God had so willed it. It just wasn't meant to be. We and the rest of our family will miss him all the rest of our lives.

We feel that we were blessed to be able to be at Walter Reed with him to love him and help take care of him the last week of his life. He was so brave and so sweet.
I was telling him how his Grandpa and I took care of him the night he had surgery when he was just a few weeks old. How comforting it was for me to hold him in my lap. I told him I would like to hold him in my lap, but he might be a bit too big. Ryan said: "We could try". So we decided that when he could get up, he would sit in my lap even if the lapped over.
So we hold him in our hearts."
Grandma & Grandpa Duran of La Pine, OR

"Dear Ryan,
We were the best of friends and I looked forward to seeing your life and family ahead of you but the war and God's grace took you from us but I and all the other guys that knew you so well will forever remember you undieing soul and always uplifting spirit. I love you Ryan.
P.F.C. Martin Butler"
martin Butler of Chicago Illinois

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

"Enjoy your Easter with Jesus Ryan, we will see you soon!"
Aunt Maureen of San Angelo, Texas

"To Ryan's famliy: Your sacrifice will not be forgotten. I read your Ryan's name at a rememberance vigil in Denver...you are in my prayers."
Oren Briese of Castle Rock, Colorado

"To all of Sgt. Ryan's friends and family, my sincere apology. But he died for a just cause. I may not have known him, but i honor him. Same to all the others who have given their lives to keep us free. May they rest in peace."
bc of georgia

"Rest in Peace Ryan Young

God saw you were getting tired
and a cure wasnt meant to be
so he put his arms around you
and whispered *come with me*
with tearful eyes we watched you
as we saw you pass away
although we love you deeply
we couldnt make you stay
your golden heart stopped beating,
hard working hands at rest
God broke our hearts to prove to us
He only takes the best.

The Two Soldiers Killed On The Scene Who Were With Ryan: Army Staff Sgt. Mark D. Vasquez, and Army Staff Sgt. Gary L. Collins."
Jenifer Cutshall of Corona, CA

"Ryan Young is my son, the love I have for him will never fade away, he lives on in my heart, my soul and my memories. Ryan touched so many lives, his capacity for love and friendship never ending. His sisters,looked up to him, he is their hero as mine and his dads, not only because of his service to his country but his love of family and friends.

Ryan had so many best friends, many were his school buddies, some in his military career, his aunts, uncles and cousins. Every one that knew Ryan was blessed with his sense of humor and his love of life.

Thank you to all of you that supported my beautiful son.

God love him!

His Mom"
Kathi Cutshall of Corona, CA

"To Sgt. Ryan Young: You're home now. Peace brother"
Tobias of Enid, OK / USA

"Thank you Ryan for being a light in our lives. I miss you everyday. You will always be with me."
Maureen (Aunt Maureen) Ledet of San Angelo, Texas, USA

"Itís been three months to the day that Ryan died. We have always been so proud of Ryan. I still cannot explain him to anyone without tears. Tears because we all miss him and tears because we are all so full of pride for Ryan. Any more words are useless because the words have not been invented that can adequately describe how we all loved and respected him.
Strength and Honor Ryan. We will see you again"
Joe (Uncle Joe) Young of Corona, CA. USA

""To the Family and Friends of Ryan C. Young: I was deeply sadden by your passing. I only flew you from Baghdad to Ramstein and I will never let your sacrafice go unforgotten. May God bless you and your family!"
Jonathan Bradley of Waldwick, NJ

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

"Ryan, we had some great times together. I wish I could have been there with you, but duty called me elsewhere. I love you, and will see you soon."
Spc. Jeremy whorton C co. 1-16 inf. of Brownwood Tx.

"Sgt. Young:
Thank your for giving yourself so that those of us at home can live freely and safely. There are not enough 'thank yous' for a gift such as this. Rest in peace soldier."
Dan and Meg Manninen of San Antonio, Texas

"To the family:
Army Sgt. Ryan C. Young will not be forgotten!
Please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you in your sorrow.
May God's love and peace be with you."
Pat and Sandi B of Montana

"Go big Red One to that Valhalla in the sky. Here on this earth, that patch of Iraq where you fell will be forever America."
Jae H. Kim of Geneva, Switzerland

"Although you did not seek it, Ryan -you have become our special Hero. Your sacrifice is a mystery of God's Divine Providence which we do not understand now. You, along with all our Fallen Heros, were chosen from all time for this moment in our history. We pray that we, as the people you defended, are worthy of your sacrifice. We think of you every morning in prayer and hope some day to be with you in heaven and in the arms of LOVE."
Elizabeth & Guy Paradise of Jackson, Michigan

"Thank you Ryan Young, 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

"Thank you all for your words of love and encouragement. Ryan Young was my beloved nephew, and will live forever in our hearts."
Maureen Ledet of San Angelo, Texas

"To the family and friends of Sgt. Ryan Young:
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 Ryan 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. Ryan Young:
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 Ryan, 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