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Army Sgt. Eugene Williams

Died March 29, 2003 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

24, of Highland, N.Y.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 7th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.; killed in a suicide car-bombing near Najaf, Iraq.

Father of one was expecting second child in June

From wire reports

All Eugene Williams wanted was a little home cooking.

That’s what his older sister, Lori Ackert, remembers most from a letter he sent her. It arrived Saturday, March 29. “He was very optimistic — he wrote that he couldn’t wait to come home so he could cook us some good food,” she told the Poughkeepsie (N.Y.) Journal.

Just hours earlier, Williams had been among the four soldiers killed by the suicide car bomber near Najaf in south-central Iraq.

A laid-back man with a love for soulful R&B music, Williams, 24, had planned to finish a demo tape showcasing his singing. Although he aspired to fame, to family and friends in Highland, N.Y., in the Hudson River valley, it was enough that he was a good guy.

Carl Relyea, his football coach at Highland High School, said Williams easily stood out. “He was a good student and a dedicated and loyal football player. That was who he was to his teammates. I guess he continued that later in life.”

Williams was married to Brandy Delacruz Williams and lived in Hawaii. They have a 3-year-old daughter, Mya, and were expecting a second child in June.

Brandy Williams told NBC’s Today show Monday that she will tell her children their father gave his life for his country. “And even though he’s not here, he loves them with all his heart, and that he’s always going to be our hero,” she said.

She last spoke to her husband on March 15, before the first bombs fell in the war. He told her that he wouldn’t be able to call for a while but that he was mailing letters to his girls.

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