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Army Spc. Jonathan D. Welch

Died August 31, 2009 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

19, of Yorba Linda, Calif.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Lewis, Wash.; died Aug. 31 in Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device. Also killed were Pfc. Jordan M. Brochu and Spc. Tyler R. Walshe.

Soldier had no regrets, his father says

The Associated Press

Jonathan Welch — funny and a fan of punk music — knew how to make the most out of life, friends said.

“He was one in a million,” Alex Morgenstern wrote on a Los Angeles Times Web page dedicated to Welch. “We will always remember listening to music all trying our best to dance ... His laugh was very memorable as well as him in general.”

Welch’s father Ben Storll remembered the 19-year-old saying less than two months before his death that he had no regrets.

“Jon knew there was a chance of this happening,” Storll said of his son’s death.

Welch, of Yorba Linda, Calif., was killed Aug. 31 in Shuyene Sufia, Afghanistan, when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive. He was based at Fort Lewis, Wash.

Welch attended Esperanza High School in Anaheim before earning his GED. In 2007, when he was 17, he enlisted. He was went to Afghanistan in July. It was his first deployment.

Dave Hill wrote online that he grew up attending the same church as Welch. Hill said he and Welch, a fellow home-school student, got together as kids and created a comic strip about a child spy armed with gadgets and fighting evil overseas.

“Being a couple years older I thought he was a little squirt,” Hill said. “But I liked him a lot. I will miss him.”

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