On Thursday a soldier came to my office to get emergency contact paperwork for 4 casualties in our brigade. A casualty can mean someone was either wounded or killed. Two of the files that I had to pull were enlisted soldiers, but two were officers. That was the first time anything had happened to an officer downrange during this deployment. On the piece of paper, beside one of the names, I saw the letters KIA. It was so upsetting to see that, and it was even worse because I couldn't talk to anyone about it. I was giving the unit the contact information for the next of kin, but a casualty is not made public until the next of kin has been notified. On Saturday, we were officially notified that CPT Dicenzo and SPC Blair were killed in Baghdad.
Unfortunately, I don't know much about SPC Blair other than what I've found online. Here is a good article about him.
*In the middle of typing this, a casualty assistance officer came in my office to get CPT Dicenzo's record updated one last time. I added the awards that he received posthumously and completed tours in Iraq and Germany. Even though it was just something small, I feel honored to have been able to help make sure that his records reflect all his accomplishments in the Army.*
Because he was a company commander, CPT Dicenzo was well known. His wife was also the FRG leader for his company and a member of our congregation at church.
Here is one of the many articles I found about CPT Dicenzo online.
The other two soldiers involved are now at Walter Reed and Landstuhl as far as I know. I hope they have complete and quick recoveries.
The memorial service for CPT Dicenzo and SPC Blair is going to be tomorrow. Once again, I hope this is the last memorial I need to go to.
10 hours ago