Fallen Soldier Honored By Unit, Friends
(September 14, 2010)
BASRA, Iraq (Sept. 11, 2010) – Sgt. Brandon Maggart was sleeping when the sirens
went off, Aug. 22. Seconds after the warning, a rocket struck the roof of his
housing unit on Basra. Fellow Soldiers of the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense
Artillery Regiment rushed to his side providing medical aid. He was removed from
the room and rushed to the troop medical clinic emergency room.
Brandon Edward Maggart, 24, a husband and a father from Liberty, Mo.,
serving his second deployment as an air defense artilleryman with the 5th
Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment, was pronounced dead on
Four days later, a memorial was held for Maggart at the post chapel.
Hundreds of people came to say farewell.
On the stage, his commander, fellow NCOs, and soldiers stood side-by-side to
talk about Maggart. From Capt. Lloyd Sporluck, commander of Battery A, 5-5
ADA, to Staff Sgt. Simon Cannon, Maggart's platoon sergeant, the message
remained the same: he was a man of character and a person to aspire to be
“Brandon was a man whose life could be summed up in one word: excellence,”
Sporluck said. “In my years of military
Army 1st Sgt. Billy Lingar, the Battery A, 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery Regiment senior non-commissioned officer, salutes the memorial to Sgt. Brandon Maggart after the ‘Last Role Call' during a ceremony at the Contingency Operating Base Basra chapel, Aug. 26. The Last Role Call, followed by a 21-gun salute, is an expression of honor for soldiers who fell in service to the country.
experience, I've never met a man of greater character.”
Spc. Kandise Phillips, one of Maggart's soldiers, remembered her NCO's
“As we all know, Maggart was a great NCO, leader and friend,” Phillips said.
“Spending the last eight months with him, I have learned he was just a kid. He
loved to make everyone laugh and was always trying to make the most of every
“Every time I had a question or needed something fixed, Maggart was usually the
first person I asked,” said Staff Sgt. Richard Hauser, a platoon sergeant with
Battery A. “In addition to being a great Soldier, Brandon was one of the rare
people you meet that single-handedly raised the morale of the people around
The ceremony continued with a rendition of ‘Amazing Grace', sung by Chief
Warrant Officer Cynthia Choo, liaison with the 201st Battlefield Surveillance
Brigade, and Sgt. Shina Richburg, a counter rockets and mortars system operator
with the 1st Infantry Division.
The end of the ceremony was marked by the last role call, where 1st Sgt. Billy
Lingar, senior NCO of Battery A, called the names of the sergeants in
attendance. When he reached Sgt. Maggart's name, he called three times with no
response. Outside the chapel three volleys of a 21-gun salute were fired to mark
the passing of Maggart.
At the end of the ceremony, each row stood and offered final respects to Maggart.
As the line continued, the small memorial stand was soon covered with coins and
personal effects as the soldiers and officers offered tribute to the fallen
Maggart is survived by his wife, Teresa, and his three year-old son, Blake.
Article and photo by Army Sgt. Cody Harding
1st Infantry Division Headquarters
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