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Army Staff Sgt. Victor A. Rosales-Lomeli

Died April 13, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

29, of Westminster, Calif.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 2nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Infantry Division, Vilseck, Germany; killed April 13 when an improvised explosive device exploded near his escort vehicle in Iraq.

Victor Rosales and his wife, Sgt. Sandra Rosales, both served in Iraq while relatives cared for their infant son, Victor. "He was proud to be a soldier, I am proud to be a soldier and hopefully one day, my son will be a soldier too," Sandra Rosales said. Victor Rosales, 29, of Westminster, Calif., died April 13 in an explosion in Iraq. He was based in Vilseck, Germany. Born in Mexico City, Rosales moved to California and performed Mexican dances at local events as a boy. He joined the Army in 1995. He was known as a tough infantryman with a twinkle in his eyes, both warm and professional with other soldiers. "I only regret that he won't be around to teach me more," one of his close friends said at a goodbye ceremony in Iraq. At the ceremony, roll call was conducted, a sergeant barking out the name of Rosales three times, only to be echoed by silence. Then the soldiers filed out into the heat and dust, tears streaming down their faces.

— Associated Press

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