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Army 1st Lt. Noah Harris

Died June 18, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom


23, of Ellijay, Ga.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Benning, Ga.; died June 18 in Baqubah, Iraq, of injuries sustained on June 17 when he was on mounted patrol and his Humvee was attacked by enemy forces using rocket-propelled grenades in Buritz, Iraq. Also killed was Cpl. William A. Long.

Georgia soldier killed Iraq

Associated Press

ATLANTA — A former University of Georgia cheerleading captain who was known for “carrying bullets in one pocket and Beanie Babies in the other” as a soldier has been killed in Iraq, along with an Army corporal from suburban Atlanta.

The Pentagon said Monday that 1st Lt. Noah Harris, 23, of Ellijay and Cpl. William A. Long, 26, of Lilburn died Saturday from injuries sustained on June 17 in Buritz, Iraq, when they were conducting a mounted patrol and their Humvee was attacked by enemy forces using rocket-propelled grenades.

Both soldiers were assigned to the Army’s 2nd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning.

Harris’ father, Rick Harris of Ellijay, said his son joined the Army after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, telling his father that people “must serve some higher purpose than yourself in life.”

Harris said his son, a high school state champion wrestler and football team captain, enjoyed giving stuffed animals and soccer balls to Iraqi children.

“He said, ‘Democracy is taking hold over here. People love Americans, they love what we’re doing,”’ Harris said.

“He was the most contagious person I’ve ever met in my life,” Rick Harris said. “Five minutes with him and he’s your friend for life.”


Family, friends remember fallen Georgia soldier

ELLIJAY, Ga. — Noah Harris’ personal mantras were “Drive on!” and “I do what I can” — mottoes that echoed again Saturday as friends and family remembered the former University of Georgia cheerleading captain who was killed this month in Iraq.

More than 500 people attended services for 1st Lt. Noah Harris, 23 on Saturday, the day that would have been his 24th birthday. Another 400 people watched the service via closed-circuit television in the auditorium of a nearby school.

Harris and Cpl. William A. Long, 26, of Lilburn died June 17 from injuries in Buritz, Iraq, after their Humvee was attacked by enemy forces using rocket-propelled grenades, Pentagon officials said.

Both soldiers were assigned to the Army’s 2nd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 3rd Brigade, 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning.

Harris was known in his platoon for having a photo of his parents’ home in Ellijay as a screen saver on his laptop computer, said Capt. Bobby Toon.

“When I asked him what the picture was of, he said, ‘That’s why I’m here.’,” Toon said.

To try to raise his unit’s morale, he also organized a pen pal program that paired his fellow soldiers with UGA students.

Harris’ father, Rick Harris of Ellijay, said his son, a high school state champion wrestler and football team captain, enjoyed giving stuffed animals and soccer balls to Iraqi children and was known for having “bullets in one pocket, Beanie Babies in the other.”

“For every bullet Noah Harris shot from his weapon, he must of handed out 10 Beanie Babies to the children of Iraq,” Toon said.

Rick Harris said his son joined the Army after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, telling his father that people “must serve some higher purpose than yourself in life.”

“He knew that for humanity to prosper, people need to be provided the kind of freedom ... he’s been given all his life,” said his mother, Lucy Harris.

— Associated Press

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