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Air Force Senior Airman William N. Newman

Died June 7, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

23, of Kingston Springs, Tenn.; assigned to the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Team of the 15th Civil Engineer Squadron, Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; died June 7 south of Balad, Iraq, of wounds suffered from an improvised explosive device.

Family remembers airman killed in Iraq

The Associated Press

On his first date, Senior Airman William N. Newman took his wife-to-be, Soyong, to a “Spider-Man” movie and gave her a portrait sketch of herself he had drawn.

The couple shared much in the less than 2 years they were married — he learned enough Korean to be able to write to her and she, trying to stay one step ahead, had been studying Japanese.

“We never ever had a fight,” she said.

Newman, 23, of Kingston Springs, Tenn., died June 7 from an explosive south of Balad, Iraq. He was a 2001 high school graduate and was assigned to Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii.

“He was a strong-headed, incredible guy who always thought of others before himself, and died trying to change the world,” said his sister, Emily Swaggerty.

Newman had many interests, including break dancing, ultimate Frisbee and working out. His wife sent him Korean snack packages from home.

Soyong Newman last spoke to her husband at noon the day before he was killed. Her husband had passed his college-level equivalence test for an associate degree and “was so excited,” she said.

“I would tell him now: ‘You’re a hero, my hero always,’ ” she said.

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