Operation Iraqi Freedom, Fallen Heroes, Iraq War 03/19/03

Jerrick McKen Petty

Idaho Falls, Idaho

December 10, 2003

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
25 Army Pfc

Company B, 3rd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)

Fort Campbell, Kentucky

Mosul, Iraq.  While guarding a gas station, Petty was attacked by enemy forces.  He died of his injuries.

Jerrick McKen Petty

Jerrick and his daughter

Jerrick McKen Petty

Jerrick and his son

Jerrick McKen Petty

Jerrick with his wife and sisters and daughter

Jerrick McKen Petty

Jerrick's Funeral

AP News

Jerrick Petty made it his mission to look out for others. He joined the Army six months ago to support his family. On Dec. 10, Petty was killed by hostile fire while guarding a gas station in Mosul, Iraq. Petty, who was stationed at Fort Campbell, is survived by his wife, Tiffany; daughter, Azure Dawn, 2; and son, Jerrick McKen II.

From Carmen Stanger  12/29/03

Pfc. Jerrick M. Petty, from Idaho Falls, Idaho was my nephew.
Jerrick was a good brave man, struggling financially in a depressed economy
and trying to do right by his family.
When he was killed he left behind his wife, his 2 year old daughter and now
1 year old son along with many other family members who love, support and
admire him.
He was a good man. He is my hero.

From: Ted DeNormandie of Trevor, Wisconsin USA 03/23/04

His name is Jerrick Petty, he ws killed in a Drive by on 10 DEC 03. He joined my platoon on 7 DEC 03. During his few days in Mosul Iraq he performed like a soldier with experience though he had none. The day prior to his death, his squad was ambushed, he reacted like a seasoned soldier and covered his buddies immediately allowing them to get to cover, and then he pulled back with them. The "seasoned" soldiers in my platoon praised him and knew he would be one of the future leaders of this great Army of ours. Jerrick was a Soldier a Husband, and a Father. If I would have to only pick one of those to describe him best. I would have to say father. Although over here does not allow for it, I could tell that his children were the light of his life. When I talked to him the day of his being assigned to me, I had to ask him about himself, and when it came to his Kids Daughter 3, and Son is going to be 1 on the 26th of this month. He was so full of pride and joy just by mentioning the children. And all we really talked about was birthdates. Jerrick Petty joined the Army on April 23rd. He joined the Army during a time of war, it takes a special breed of man to do just that. He joined the Army to make a better life for his wife and children, again a special breed. He joined at an age of 25, again it shows that he did not jump into the decision. He immediately displayed a certain confidence, without cockiness. It was a short conversation, but I learned a great deal about him. I have been doing this a while and I know the true product when I see it. Jerrick made an immediate impact on all the members of our platoon. He deserves the highest honors, for he gave the ultimate sacrifice for his Country, his Family, and his fellow soldiers. He performed like a true soldier with years of experience. Jerrick will remain in our hearts, and always be remembered He is a soldier, a hero, and always our brother He is survived by his Wife Tiffany, Daughter Azure 3, and son Jerrick. His Father Jerald, and Mother Dianne, He was a member of my family and will always be remembered as a brother."
Ted DeNormandie of Trevor, Wisconsin USA

From IdahoStatesMan.com  03/31/04 by Sandra Forester

Meridian soldier killed in Iraq honored by American Legion
Family given gold star banner in tradition begun in World War I

The Idaho Statesman

It´s a tradition started by the mothers and wives of those who served and died in World War I — blue stars on a banner for each family member in service, gold stars for those who died.

The American Legion has continued the custom.

On Tuesday, a legion representative visited Jerald and Diane Petty at their home in Meridian and gave them a gold-star banner in remembrance of their son, U.S. Army Pfc. Jerrick Petty.

Petty was killed in a drive-by shooting Dec. 10 while he was guarding a gas station in Mosul, Iraq.

“It´s so everybody will remember, remember the sacrifices that are made,” said Frank Pierce, of the American Legion Department of Idaho.

Pierce said Petty´s wife, Tiffany Petty of Idaho Falls, was given a similar banner in December.

Families of two other Idahoans killed in the Iraq war also received banners.

Diane Petty said the banner would join the medals from her son´s service.

Jerrick Petty joined the Army on April 22, trained in Georgia and was stationed at Fort Campbell, Ky., with the 101st Airborne Division.

In spite of his short time in the service, his platoon leader Daniel DeNormandie wrote in an e-mail that Petty would have been a leader and acted like a seasoned soldier during an ambush by covering fellow soldiers so they could pull back before he joined them.

“He joined the Army during a time of war,” DeNormandie wrote. “It takes a special breed of man to do just that. He joined the Army to make a better life for his wife and children — again, a special breed.”

It was Petty´s love for his wife and young daughter and son that stood out with fellow soldiers and his parents.

“His children were the light of his life,” Diane Petty said.

Petty joined the Army after finding it difficult to support his family with jobs in construction and at McDonald´s.

Diane Petty said her son believed in what he was doing to help the Iraqis, regardless of whether weapons of mass destruction were found.

“I think that helps us a lot, that he believed in what he was doing,” she said. “He was over there to stand up for people who couldn´t stand up for themselves. That was his job.”

Defending others was something he´d done all of his life, family members say.

At age 3, Petty rounded up a branch three times his size to defend his sister against kids in the neighborhood, Diane Petty said.

When he was 10, Jerrick beat up some neighborhood bullies who were picking on other children, said his father, Jerald Petty.

“That kid was soft-hearted. He always went for the underdogs,” Diane Petty said.

Jerrick Petty was born in Las Vegas and grew up in Hawthorne, Nev. He was the middle child of five and the only boy.

His parents described him as so bright that he aced tests even though he spent most of his class time drawing pictures. He did not finish high school and instead got his equivalency diploma.

“He was mischievous,” his mother said. “He had an awesome sense of humor and always a smile kind of glint in his eye.”

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