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Army 1st Lt. Jonathan W. Edds

Died August 17, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

24, of White Pigeon, Mich.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Benning, Ga.; died Aug. 17 in Baghdad of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his vehicle using an improvised explosive device and small-arms fire.

Insurgent attack in Baghdad leaves Auburn student a widow

The Associated Press

AUBURN, Ala. — Laura Edds, an Auburn University pharmacy student whose husband was five months into a 15-month deployment to Iraq, knew something horrible had happened as soon as the car pulled up to her home.

“When the chaplain and an Army officer approached the front door, I knew that there was no other reason for them to be there,” she said.

Eads learned her husband, 1st Lt. Jonathan W. Edds, 24, was killed in Baghdad on Aug. 17 when the platoon he was leading was attacked by insurgents with an improvised explosive and gunfire.

“Jon is gone and my life is completely altered,” Edds told the Opelika-Auburn News in a story Sept. 4. “Some days it’s difficult to even make yourself get out of bed, but I trust in God and that he knows that there is more in life for me in the future.”

Jonathan Edds, a native of White Pigeon, Mich., and the middle of three brothers, graduated from West Point in 2005 and married Laura that summer. They had dated long-distance for a couple of years.

“When you think about military guys, most people stereotypically think of a very tense, serious individual. But Jon was laid-back and fun to be around, yet he was very good at his job,” said Laura Edds, a native of North Carolina. “That was something I admired about him.”

The couple moved to Phenix City after Edds was transferred to Fort Benning, Ga., and Laura Edds enrolled at Auburn.

Her husband shipped out in March to a city south of Baghdad, where he served as a leader for a tank platoon.

“Any time we ever spoke to him on the phone, the last thing I’d always tell him was to stay in that tank,” said Ray Russell, his father-in-law.

Edds was soon transferred to a scout platoon in Baghdad where he patrolled in a Humvee, which offers less protection than a tank. He kept in touch with his wife through regular e-mails and phone calls until the August day when she learned he had been killed.

“Wednesday [Aug. 15] was the last day we talked,” she recalled.

Killed Aug. 17, Edds was laid to rest at West Point Cemetery in New York last month beside one of his classmates.

“He always did his job and he loved what he was doing,” his wife said.

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