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Army Spc. William Z. Vanosdol

Died August 19, 2009 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

23, of Pinson, Ala.; assigned to the 172nd Support Battalion, Schweinfurt, Germany; died Aug. 19 at Ad Diwaniyah, Iraq, of wounds sustained when enemy rocket fire struck his quarters.

Private remembered for appreciation of arts, literature

The Associated Press

William Z. VanOsdol, better known as “Will,” loved just about anything to do with art. Especially drawing.

Shane Kiep, of Hunstville, Ala., wrote in an online message board that VanOsdol was “always funny, one of the best artists I’ve ever personally met.”

VanOsdol, 23, of Pinson, Ala., died Aug. 19 in Ad Diwaniyah of wounds suffered when enemy rocket fire struck his quarters. He was assigned to Schweinfurt, Germany.

A classmate, Kat Delawder, wrote in an online message board that VanOsdol “will forever be remembered by me as that zany guy who always knew exactly what to say in any situation.”

The art enthusiast listed hard rock bands Seether, Evanescence and Godsmack among his favorites on his MySpace page, and enjoyed films such as “Underworld” and “Van Helsing.” He also loved reading and had an eye for the fantasy tales he read in English class at Pinson Valley High School.

“He just lit up on those stories and got very animated in the conversations that we had,” said assistant principal Karen Mardis. “He was a big fan of Beowulf and Lord of the Rings. That struck a chord with him.”

VanOsdol is survived by his mother and two siblings. His father died in April, while the soldier was serving in Iraq.

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