Family, friends and fellow soldiers gathered at 73rd Street Chapel to remember a fallen comrade during a memorial service Feb. 6.
Sgt. 1st Class James Kurth, an electronic warfare specialist with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, died Jan. 16, following a motorcycle accident.
Attendees sat silently, many wiping away tears, as soldiers paid tribute to Kurth.
“Sgt. 1st Class Kurth’s intelligence, articulate manner and friendship portrayed a character that exuded and infected confidence in all those that worked with him,” said Capt. Raymond Kangas, rear detachment commander for the brigade’s 4th Brigade Special Troops Battalion.
“His leadership and expertise as the brigade’s electronic warfare specialist were unparalleled and the brigade will be hard pressed to fill and find a more qualified and dedicated noncommissioned officer,” Kangas said.
Spc. Andrew Cain, a fire support specialist who worked with Kurth, praised the soldier.
“Sgt. 1st Class Kurth was not only a good soldier and good (noncommissioned officer), but he was also a great friend,” said Cain, assigned to the same company. “He was someone who no matter what your problems were, he would stop what he was doing and listen to you and give you advice on the situation.”
Prior to the final roll call, the chaplain gave a few final words.
“There is a sense of an aching void as we reflect on the life that was lived by the one that we loved who is now gone,” said Capt. Vince Hardy, the brigade’s rear detachment acting chaplain. “We miss the companionship of our loved one in the person of Sergeant (1st Class) Kurth, and our grief may run deep.”
Kurth’s awards include the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbons and the Combat Action Badge. Kurth was a member of the Sergeant Audie Murphy Club.