- NATO Kosovo Force
- Operation Enduring Freedom
- Operation Freedom’s Sentinel
- Operation Inherent Resolve
- Operation Iraqi Freedom
- Operation New Dawn
- Operation Odyssey Lightning
- Operation Spartan Shield
- U.S. Africa Command Operations
- U.S. Central Command operations
- The People Behind The Sacrifice
Army Pfc. Erin L. McLyman
Died March 13, 2010 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom
26, of Federal Way, Wash.; assigned to the 296th Brigade Support Battalion, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.; died March 13 in Balad, Iraq, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked her base with mortar fire.
Lewis soldier had ties to Washington state, Oregon
Staff and wire reports
TACOMA, Wash. — An Army specialist with ties to Washington and Oregon has died in Iraq.
The body of Spc. Erin L. McLyman, 26, arrived March 15 at Dover Air Force Base, Del. Her identification was released by the Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations Center at Dover.
She died March 13 of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked her base with mortar fire.
She lived most recently in Federal Way. She graduated from Sheldon High School in Eugene, Ore.
Memorial honors Ore. soldier killed in Iraq
The Associated Press
EUGENE, Ore. — Oregon Gov. Ted Kulongoski joined about 300 relatives, friends and community members on Thursday at a Eugene memorial service for a 26-year-old soldier killed in Iraq.
Pfc. Erin McLyman died March 13 in Balad, Iraq, from injuries sustained when enemy forces attacked her base with mortar fire. She was a 2001 graduate of Eugene’s Sheldon High School.
The governor had ordered flags at all public institutions to be flown at half-staff Thursday in her memory.
McLyman’s husband, Brian Williams, tucked a folded U.S. flag under his arm and followed the soldiers who carried his wife’s casket out of the Eugene Faith Center.
Williams stopped to watch an ivory-colored hearse led by police officers and Patriot Guard Riders transport the casket down Polk Street. He watched until every motorcycle was out of sight, then murmured, “That’s so awesome.”
Based out of Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Wash., McLyman was part of the 296th Brigade Support Battalion, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division. Her deployment to Iraq in August was her first.
Fallen soldier had turned life around
The Associated Press
Erin McLyman emerged from high school a confident, good student who before graduating had overcome a severe, years-long drug addiction.
“My grades were dropping, I wasn’t going to class, weird people would come over to the house and drop by in the middle of the night. I’d leave and not come back,” a 17-year-old McLyman said nine years ago in an interview with KVAL-TV in Eugene, Ore.
She was sharing her success story of kicking a habit she said had involved using marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine. After graduating from Sheldon High School in Eugene, where she was a member of a dance team, she enlisted in the Air Force.
She later re-enlisted with the Oregon National Guard and returned to active duty with the Army.
“She lived every moment like she didn’t have a second to spare,” her family wrote.
McLyman, 26, of Federal Way, Wash., was killed March 13 in Balad, Iraq, in a mortar attack. She was assigned to Joint Base Lews-McChord.
“We will miss her — our state and nation will never be quite as good without her,” Gov. Ted Kulongoski said at a memorial service in Eugene.
She is survived by her husband, Brian Williams; her parents, Robert and Flora McLyman; two sisters; and a grandmother.