AWMF is proud to announce that we will be sending a recent nominee to Arlington. The family of PFC Steven Davis will be visiting his grave this summer.
Private First Class Steven A. Davis, 23, of Woodbridge, Virginia, died July 4, 2007, in Baghdad, Iraq, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with grenades. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colorado.
One Carried On a Family Tradition; Another Was a 'Soldier at Heart'
By Mark Berman
Courtesy of the Washington Post
Thursday, July 19, 2007
Army Private First Class Steven A. Davis was a fearless, stand-up guy who exceeded expectations and wanted to take care of his young family, those who knew him said. Yesterday, friends and family members gathered to honor Davis as he was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery.
Davis, 23, of Woodbridge, Virginia, was killed July 4, 2007, in Baghdad when insurgents attacked his unit with grenades, the Defense Department reported. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 12th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division based at Fort Carson, Colorado.
More than 90 mourners stood under a cloudy sky and braved intermittent rain to pay their respects to Davis, who was the 351st member of the military killed in Iraq to be buried at Arlington.
Davis came from a family steeped in military tradition. His mother, Tess Davis, is a paramedic in Iraq; his grandfather, Rick Lara, is there as a mechanic; and his younger brother, Christopher, is a soldier there as well, said Davis's father, Buck, an Army veteran who spoke to The Washington Post this month.
"He had no sense of any type of fear," Buck Davis said. He said he had encouraged his son to work and go to school, because not everyone is suited for military service.
But Buck Davis said his son turned out to be "a really good soldier. He exceeded all of my expectations."
As a teenager, Davis was the only youth allowed to play ice hockey with the grown-ups at Fort Bragg, his father said.
As an adult, Davis continued to show maturity beyond his years, joining the Army to support his family. His wife, Ayla, gave birth to their daughter, Elizabeth, in April 2006.
"He wanted to be a man and take care of his family," his sister-in-law Michelle Davis told The Post in an interview this month.
Yesterday, Ayla Davis received a folded American flag while Elizabeth sat on her grandmother's lap. Davis's parents also received flags, as the three family members in Iraq had returned for the funeral.
Although Davis had only been in the Army since 2005, he had received several awards, including the Purple Heart and Bronze Star Medal. He was on his first tour in Iraq and had been home in April to celebrate his daughter's 1st birthday.
Beside his grave were half a dozen wreaths and floral arrangements, including a red and white wreath from the Baghdad fire department, with a card that read: "With heavy hearts, please hear the words we are not able to speak."
Earlier yesterday, mourners had gathered to say goodbye to another Southern son, Army Sergeant Gene L. Lamie of Homerville, Georgia. Family members said that there was little doubt that Lamie was going to join the military.
"He grew up with a soldier's heart," his brother, John Lamie, told the Florida Times-Union last week.
His mother, Linda Lamie, agreed. "My son served his country. He was a soldier at heart. His biggest concern was to get the people under him home."
Lamie, 25, died July 6, 2007, in Iraq of wounds suffered when a makeshift bomb detonated near his vehicle. Private First Class Le Ron A. Wilson, 18, of Queens, New York, was also killed. Lamie was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division based at Fort Stewart, Georgia.
More than 50 mourners followed Lamie's flag-draped silver coffin to his grave site. He was the 350th member of the military killed in Iraq to be laid to rest at Arlington.
Lamie's wife, Dara, was presented with a folded flag, as were his father, Eugene M. Lamie, and mother.
Lamie's brother John Lamie, a Georgia National Guardsman, served in Iraq and spoke with his brother after his own squad suffered casualties.
"He told me we were soldiers," John Lamie told the Times-Union. "We were meant to do what we were doing."
The Davis and Lamie services were among 32 burials at Arlington yesterday. Separated by two years in life and two days in death, the men were laid to rest side by side in what John Lamie called "a house of heroes."
Read more HERE.