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Army Sgt. Steve Morin Jr.

Died September 28, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

34, of Arlington, Texas; assigned to the 111th Engineer Battalion, 36th Infantry Division, Texas Army National Guard, Mineral Wells, Texas; killed Sept. 28 when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee west of Umm Qasr, Iraq.

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Arlington soldier made the military his career

Associated Press

DALLAS — From the time he finished high school, Sgt. Steve Morin Jr. made serving in the military his career, his family said.

“He always stood up for what he thought was right,” Gwendolyn Michelle Morin, his wife, said Thursday. “He was a fighter. He would never give up.”

On Wednesday, the Arlington soldier was killed west of Umm Qasr, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device went off, overturning the military vehicle in which he was riding, the Defense Department announced Thursday.

Gwendolyn Morin said she had talked to him about four hours before he died.

“He had called me to let me know what he was going to do that day,” she said. He expected to be able to call her more often because of the missions he was being assigned. Sometimes they would go 11 or 12 days between calls.

Morin told his wife how much he loved her and their family.

“We had our whole lives ahead of us,” she said. “He had so much potential. He was intelligent and determined.”

Morin enlisted in the Navy after graduating high school in his hometown of Brownfield at 17. By 34, Morin had devoted 14 years to the Navy, served in the National Guard for two and planned to attend Officers Candidate School.

He was assigned to the Army National Guard’s 111th Engineer Battalion, 36th Infantry Division in Mineral Wells.

“He’s very strong willed, very determined. Humorous, a clown, but he was also very disciplined and very passionate about what he believed in,” Gwendolyn Morin said. “He always wanted to serve his country.”

Morin was still in the Navy when he met his wife. At the time, the two were working for a photo company; he was Santa Claus and she was an elf, she said. Both were attending Texas Tech University.

“It was funny because we always kept running into each other. He would hang outside my classes and wait for me with a Diet Coke,” recalled Gwendolyn Morin, a stay-at-home mom and social work student. “He knew how to make me really happy.”

Steve Morin went on to earn a degree in economics and another in finance with honors.

The couple married in 1999 in Brownfield.

Morin was expecting to attend Officers Candidate School when he was called up for duty last year. He had been deployed in January.

In addition to his wife, Morin is survived by a 6-year-old son, Esteban, and 12-year-old daughter, Brianna, as well as his parents, Steve and Audrey Morin of Brownfield, a sister and a brother.

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