Specialist Chad E. Marsh, 20 years old, of Wichita, Kansas was
killed in action 18 February 2007 in Baghdad, Iraq of wounds
when a grenade launch by the enemy landed in his combat Humvee
while his unit was conducting combat operations. Chad was a
gunner on the Humvee and supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom in
the war on terrorism for the United States of America. Chad was
assigned to the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd
Brigade Combat Team, Ist Infantry Division.
"The Big Red One" "Prepared and Loyal,
Specialist Marsh's mother, brother, Aunt, Uncle, and family
members, have invited the Patriot Guard as their guests at the
funeral services in Wichita, KS. and to the Full Military
Graveside services in Coldwater, Kansas. The mother said Chad
was a ROTC Cadet and joined the Army while still in high
school at Northwest. After graduation he went to serve in Iraq
September 2006. She said he was a very good kid and describe
him as "One of a Kind"
posthumously promoted from Private First Class to Specialist.
fought and died to protect his families, his fellow-soldiers in
his unit, our families and our freedom.
can, please make this mission to show your respect and support
his family and honor this Fallen Soldier
Chad and the Marsh family.
Wichita International Airport Escort
Bring your motorcycle flag poles and flag to display Flag Honor
On Saturday, 24 February 2007, the
Patriot Guard gathered at Wichita Mid-Continent Airport
to meet the jet bringing Spc. Chad Marsh home to
Wichita. The jet arrived at 13:00 in Wichita. Chad's
mother, members of the Marsh family, ROTC members, and a US
Army Honor military escort from Fort Riley, were present at
the arrival. Riders escorted the hearse and family to the
mortuary. Approximately 120 motorcycles and additional
automobiles escorted the hearse.
We had the honor of meeting Chad's
military escort, SSgt. Newland, who flew from Germany to
escort Chad home. He served with Chad in Iraq, and they
became best friends. SSgt Newland was Chad's platoon
sergeant. He is a US Army combat soldier, and was wounded
04 December, 2006. He was recuperating in an Army hospital
in Germany when Chad was killed.
We extend our thanks to MSgt Callender,
the Military Family Casualty Officer, for assisting the
family and facilitating the escort. Many thanks go to area
ALR/PG members who made it a priority to ride
escort for Chad and his family.
God bless Chad's mother, Janet, and
the entire Marsh family.
Mission completed at
15:30, 24 February 2007.
The picture was provided by Bob
Dashiell. Thanks, Bob - great picture.
Monday, 26 February 2007,
approximately 120 motorcycles, plus 20 or more automobiles,
converged in Wichita, KS to pay tribute to US Army Spc. Chad
Marsh. Groups came from all over Kansas for the funeral and
in the morning, the Patriot Guard was escorted by Wichita
Police to the church where we stood guard for Chad and his
family. This was a full military honors funeral, with honor
guard provided by Fort Riley soldiers, which included the
1st Armored Division and the 1st Infantry Division. Chad
was a member of the famed "Blue Spaders", which is the 1st
Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team,
of the 1st Infantry Division. At least a dozen of
his unit from Iraq were present at the service, plus several
high-ranking officers attended, including a Brigadier
General of the 1st Infantry Division.
The motorcycle honor guard flying all
colors escorted the hearse from the mortuary to the church.
The Patriot Guard provided an avenue of flags at the
church. After the service the Patriot Guard lined up for
the escort to Coldwater, KS. Approximately 65-70 bikes made
the trip. Along the route we stopped at designated staging
areas and picked up additional riders at Harper and Medicine
Lodge. When we arrived at Coldwater cemetery the procession
was five and a half miles long. That included the hearse,
the family and friends, citizens of the community, and the
Patriot Guard. We counted over 150 bikes. Western Kansas
Patriot Guard was well-represented, and they brought over
200 flags and lined the cemetery before our arrival. School
students and citizens of Coldwater also held the flagpoles
at the cemetery. We provided a perimeter of flags
surrounding the gravesite as the full military honors were
bestowed. Charles Lies, bagpiper, played "Amazing Grace"
after the 21-gun salute and Taps. Thank you, Charles.
The route from Wichita to Coldwater
went through several small towns, and the communities showed
their support everywhere. School children and adults lined
the streets, waving flags as the procession passed. It is
so heartwarming to see that kind of community support. The
family told us they were overwhelmed with gratitude as they
observed each community show its support. It softened the
pain they were feeling over the loss of Chad.
After the service, the Coldwater
Veterans Center provided dinner for all Patriot Guard.
The Patriot Guard sincerely thanks all
the law enforcement agencies involved in this mission. They
provided escort from city to city, county to county, all the
way to Coldwater. Their efforts to ensure our safe travel
were outstanding. We also thank the generous citizens
of Coldwater who provided food. From Wichita to Coldwater,
the citizens opened their arms to the Patriot Guard and made
us feel like family, in the same manner that we opened our
arms to the Marsh family.
I extend my personal thanks to the
Patriot Guard Road Guards and all Captains. You made this a
safe mission for everyone involved. I also thank each and
every person who supported the Patriot Guard mission for
Spc. Marsh. Thank you for all the teamwork. "Alone we can
do so little, together we can do so much."
The Patriot Guard extends our
gratitude to all the soldiers, who like Spc. Chad Marsh,
guard America's front battle line. We, the Patriot
Guard, are guarding their "back" here in the U.S. Because
of our soldiers, America remains free. God bless the Marsh
family, and God bless all our soldiers.
26 February 2007