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Marine 1st Lt. Andrew K. Stern

Died September 16, 2004 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

24, of Germantown, Tenn.; assigned to 1st Tank Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center, Twentynine Palms, Calif.; died Sept. 16 of injuries sustained in enemy action in Anbar province, Iraq.

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Marine killed in Iraq loved life at fast pace

Associated Press

MEMPHIS, Tenn.— A Memphis soldier killed in Iraq loved life at a fast pace, and was looking forward to seeing it on the back of a new Harley-Davidson motorcycle, his family said.

Marine First Lt. Andrew Stern, who tentatively was one month away from leaving the war in Iraq, was killed in battle Sept. 16. His family didn’t have many details on how he died, only “bits and pieces” supplied by the Marines who visited their home that afternoon.

“He was rambunctious from the get-go,” said Stern’s father, Rich Stern. “But he became as good a son as there could be. He became my best friend.”

Stern, 24, deployed in April, and was in Fallujah to the best of his family’s knowledge. He had mentioned the area in letters and sent home disposable cameras containing pictures of the region.

Stern grew up in Arlington Heights, near Chicago, and moved to Shelby County in 1997 when his father was transferred in a previous job. He attended the University of Tennessee, where he was captain of the collegiate row crew, an officer of the Inter-Fraternity Council and a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity.

Stern’s red Toyota Tacoma pickup was his pride, but a Harley-Davidson motorcycle on order was what he was looking forward to, his family said.

“He always wanted to be a Marine,” said Lisa Parker, whose son, Jeff, roomed with Stern at Tennessee and became one of his best friends. “He was just an awesome kid. I was honored to know him.”

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