TIMMONSVILLE, S.C. (1/4/2012) — South Carolina Army National
Guard's, 133rd Military Police (MP) Company from Timmonsville, S.C.,
held a memorial dedication ceremony Jan. 4, outside their armory to
honor the three soldiers, 1st Lt. Ryan Rawl of Lexington, Sgt. 1st
Class Matthew Thomas of Easley and Sgt. John Meador II of Columbia,
who lost their lives June 20, 2012, during their deployment to Khost
province, Afghanistan, when they were attacked by a suicide bomber
during a routine patrol of the city.
South Carolina Army National Guard, 133rd Military Police Company from Timmonsville, S.C., honor the three soldiers who lost their lives June 20, 2012, during their deployment to Khost province, Afghanistan, at a memorial dedication ceremony Jan. 4, 2013 outside their armory. National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Tracci
National Guard photo by Staff Sgt. Tracci
“They forever gave up their freedom. This memorial is a
way to honor their service. I served with them and I want to
honor them the rest of my life, I don't want the wound to
close because I want them to forever be with me,” said Capt.
David Bryant, commander of the 133rd MPs.
Michael Montrose, first sergeant for the 133rd MPs said,
“These soldiers will always be part of our unit and our
history. The commander and I wanted to do something to
remember these three, so no one would ever forget their
Christie Meador, wife of Sgt. Meador,
said, “It's been a rough road to be on, but when I was told
about the memorial, I thought it was a great way to remember
our soldiers. I looked forward to today to celebrate them
and find another way to keep their memory alive. Everyday is
a battle, but I will bring our daughter here to see the
memorial and I look forward to telling her about her
“I am so proud of my son. He volunteered to
do something not many do. We will miss him, but we are not
to question God's plan,” said John Meador, father of Sgt.
Spc. Jared Bland, a gunner for the 133rd MPs,
was one of the five soldiers wounded during the attack. He
said, “At the moment of the attack, I was worried about the
others before I realized how hurt I was. But it hurt more
when not everyone came home.”
Bland said he was
injured with ball bearings going through his right thigh; he
has gone through physical therapy and is doing well. He is
still going through the healing process. “I will be staying
in the military, it means a lot to me.”
ceremony, the company stood in formation in front of the
memorial. The company was formed into their platoons, and
the platoon leaders stood behind their platoons. Except for
the platoon that Rawl lead. His spot stood empty. 1st Lt.
Kevin Grimsley, 2nd platoon leader for the 133rd MPs said,
“Ryan was one of my best friends. It felt weird looking to
my right and him not being there. It brought back all my
“This memorial means a lot to all of us.
We will all miss our family members,” said Bland. “It's an
elite group of individuals who serve, today is a dedication
to those who gave it all.
By Army Staff Sgt. Tracci Dorgan
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