kansas patriot guard, kansas patriot guard, kansas patriot guard


PG Mission Alerts

Special Missions and Events

Mission Statement

Photo Galleries


Mission History

Join Our Mission

Contact  US






 Patriot Guard Mission Complete

for Fallen Hero

Cpl Todd Davis

January 20-21, 2008

Kansas City, MO


Star Herald/Allen Edmonds
Davis laid to rest with honor
The body of Corporal Todd E. Davis, former Raymore resident, is carried to its final resting place Monday in the veterans' section of Mt. Moriah Cemetery in Kansas City. Davis was buried beside his father, Eddie, also a veteran. Members of the 705th Military Police Battalion, Fort Leavenworth, Kan., participated in the ceremonies.

Lead Story - Jan. 24, 2008

Davis laid to rest with honor
Military, family and friends celebrate former Raymore student's sacrifice

By Allen Edmonds
The Star Herald

The morning Todd Davis completed his mission, he picked oranges.

Leave it to Todd to find the joy in life anywhere – even in the harsh and sizzling deserts of Diyala Province, Iraq. Even when every unfamiliar face registers distrust, fear and often hatred. Even when death can be a mathematical probability with any footstep.

“I got to eat a couple of them that morning,” said Specialist Chris Reigstadt of Texas, Davis’ closest friend in Iraq, and a fellow member of the 3rd Squadron, 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment, 1st Armored Division.

“He and the others were laughing and carrying on that morning in the back of the vehicle, and it made me feel good just to hear them back there,” Reigstadt said.

What they couldn’t have known for sure, but had to know was a distinct possibility, was the fate that awaited them.

Davis, who attended Raymore-Peculiar Middle School before moving to Lee’s Summit, completed his final mission that morning, Jan. 9, in Sinsil, a community about 60 miles north of Baghdad along the Diyala River.

According to the New York Times of Jan. 14, Davis and five others, plus an Iraqi interpreter, were killed when they entered a house that had apparently been rigged with explosives by Sunni insurgents – even after the same house had been cleared of explosives just two weeks earlier.
Others survived the explosion, including a sergeant who ran back into the village to arrest a shopkeeper who had directed the U.S. soldiers to the compound, according to the Times article.
Reigstadt didn’t discuss the deadly moments when he spoke to the funeral attendees Monday at Mt. Moriah Chapel in Kansas City.

But he did tell Davis’ friends and family what they already know, and what he would miss most.
“That laugh. If you didn’t know where Todd was in the morning when he woke up, just go out in the hallway and listen for a minute. He’d be somewhere laughing and you knew something good was going on,” Reigstadt said.

But there was something that drove Davis – something no one could change, according to his aunt, Dorothy Ochsner of Kansas City.

In addition to being “extremely courteous and respectful – very good with children, he was fiercely independent.” Ochsner said

“Once he made up his mind, you couldn’t change it.”

Such was the case the day he suddenly decided to join the Army, after already being enrolled at the University of Oklahoma where he planned to pursue a degree in architecture.

He had completed several challenges on the way: overcoming the death of his father, Eddie, Ochsner’s brother, being the most difficult.

But he made his father proud by mastering the sport of wrestling – something he didn’t even try until his freshman year of high school at Lee’s Summit North.

Under the direction of Coach Bill Biggerstaff, he suffered through “a lot of losses those first couple of years. But you could always count on Todd to work hard and do his best. And he always did it with that smile on his face,” Biggerstaff said.

That determination led him from an unskilled high school freshman wrestler to National Junior College Athletic Association All-American his sophomore year at St. Louis Community College at Meramec.

He was also an academic All-American at the school.

“I suspect that same desire to push himself physically helped him when he decided to join the Army,” Biggerstaff said.

His father, a Viet Nam-era Marine veteran might have been most proud of the assessment of Brig. Gen. Mark O’Neill, who presented the family with posthumous medals and awards at the funeral.
“Todd believed in what he was doing,” O’Neill said, “and no one could dissuade him pursuing the mission.”

“All of us go through life hoping that somehow, some way, we will have the opportunity to make a difference in someone else’s life; to make the world somehow better for our passing. Todd did that.

“Most of us go through life with just the opportunity to read about history. Todd wrote it,” he said.

“For an instant, we were a bit weaker for his passing,” the general said, “but then you meet Chris, and you realize that each and every one of those soldiers committed themselves to being more than just themselves – and you remember that we’re a great team.”

Davis’ personality didn’t wait until adulthood to develop, however. His communication arts teacher at Raymore-Peculiar Middle School remembers the same guy that lightened the load for his buddies in Iraq.

“I remember Todd as being very social and outgoing. He was a spitfire who never left a moment without comment, and very seldom did the smile leave his face.”

Davis’ final honor came shortly after his death, when his superiors promoted him posthumously to Corporal. It was an honor well-deserved, Gen. O’Neill believes.

“Todd, you have completed your mission. You served your country with great honor and an impassioned sense of duty.”