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Army Spc. Abraham S. Wheeler III

Died August 28, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

22, of Columbia, S.C.; assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 71st Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.; died Aug. 28 in Charkh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

Was looking forward to restoring Olds when he returned

The Associated Press

Abraham S. Wheeler III, whom friends called “Rod,” couldn’t wait to get home and finish restoring his 1985 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme.

His father, Abraham Wheeler Jr., was hoping to have it repainted by the time his son came home. But he won’t have that chance.

“I’ve never had a feeling like that ever,” the elder Wheeler said of the moment he learned of his son’s death. “My heart, it felt like it had fallen down to my foot.”

Wheeler joined the Army in 2007, two years after graduating from Ridge View High School, where he was a 6-foot-2, 260-pound defensive end on the football team. He was assigned to Fort Drum, N.Y.

The 22-year-old from Columbia, S.C., was killed by a roadside bomb Aug. 28 in Logar province, Afghanistan.

His father said when he last spoke to his son on the phone, the soldier said “things were getting a little hectic, but he told me not to worry because he would be all right.”

However, the younger Wheeler knew the risks, according to posts on his online Facebook page.

“Man, so many soldiers fallin all over this ... country,” he wrote. “My heart goes out to them.”

Wheeler is also survived by a brother.

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