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Army Staff Sgt. Ricky A. Kieffer

Died March 15, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

36, of Ovid, Mich.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 182nd Field Artillery Regiment (Multiple Launch Rocket System), Michigan Army National Guard, Detroit; killed March 15 when enemy forces using small-arms fire attacked his unit in Baghdad.

Michigan Guardsman killed in Iraq

Associated Press

OVID, Mich. — As this weekend’s two-year anniversary of the start of the Iraq war nears, the Pentagon says an Army National Guard member from mid-Michigan has been killed in an ambush by insurgents in Baghdad.

Staff Sgt. Ricky A. Kieffer, 36, of Ovid died Tuesday, the department said on its Web site.

Kieffer was assigned to the Army National Guard’s 1st Battalion, 182nd Field Artillery Regiment (Multiple Rocket Launch System) based in Detroit.

“He’s a hometown hero, he gave his life for what he believed in,” Al Goodrich, an Ovid police officer and Kieffer’s friend, told WILX-TV in Lansing.

Kieffer, whose survivors include his wife and two children, had been in Iraq since Dec. 31, according to Lansing’s WLNS-TV.

“The whole town knew about it almost immediately,” said Bill Messeroll, who owns a hardware store in Ovid. “It’s sad when any soldier dies, but when it’s somebody you have as a customer or a part of a small community, it becomes more personal.”

Ovid is located 30 miles northeast of Lansing in Clinton County. Flags were lowered to half-staff after word of Kieffer’s death reached the town of 1,700 residents.

Kieffer is the 44th member of the U.S. armed forces with known Michigan ties to be killed supporting military operations in Iraq.

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