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Army Sgt. Chad W. Lake

Died February 13, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

26, of Ocala, Fla.; assigned to the 5th Squadron, 7th Cavalry, 3d Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.; killed Feb. 13 when the vehicle in which he was riding overturned in Balad, Iraq. Also killed were Sgt. Rene Knox Jr. and Spc. Dakotah L. Gooding.

Florida soldier killed in Iraq vehicle accident

Associated Press

OCALA, Fla. — A soldier from Ocala was killed in Iraq when the military vehicle he shared with two other soldiers overturned into a canal, officials said.

Sgt. Chad W. Lake, 26, died Sunday near Balad, Iraq, the Department of Defense said Tuesday in a news release.

Also killed were Sgt. Rene Knox Jr., 22, of New Orleans, and Spc. Dakotah Gooding, 21, of Des Moines, Iowa, the release said.

Lake and the two other soldiers were assigned to the Army’s 5th Squadron, 7th Cavalry, 3d Infantry Division, based at Fort Stewart, Ga.

The soldiers were killed while on combat patrol near Balad, but the Army classified their deaths as non-hostile because they were not under fire at the time of the accident.

Five soldiers were injured when they tried to rescue the three, according to the Army.

Lake was born in Ocala and graduated from North Marion High School in 1996. He enlisted in the Army in 1999, and had since re-enlisted twice, said his stepfather, Worthy Farr.

Lake started out in the Army’s air-defense unit and later was transferred to the cavalry as a scout. He was last deployed Jan. 10.

Lake’s father, Ken Lake, said his son loved sports and entertaining his younger relatives.

“I’m very proud of him. He was a good kid,” he said.

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