FORT HOOD — The names of nine soldiers who died during combat in Afghanistan were added to the 1st Cavalry Division’s Global War on Terrorism memorial during a memorial rededication ceremony at Cooper Field on Friday.
The soldiers were members of the division or assigned to units under the division’s command at the time of their passing in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Freedom’s Sentinel in Afghanistan.
At least seven Gold Star family members of the fallen and several local community and senior Fort Hood leaders attended the ceremony.
The names of the soldiers added to the memorial were:
1st Lt. Jason Togi from Pago Pago, American Samoa, killed in action in Zabul Province on Aug. 26, 2013.
Staff Sgt. Benjamin G. Prange from Hickman, Nebraska, was killed in action in Kandahar Province on July 24, 2014.
Pfc. Keith M. Williams from Visalia, California, was killed in action in Kandahar Province on July 24, 2014.
Sgt. 1st Class Ramon S. Morris from New York, New York, was killed in action in Parwan Province on Dec. 12, 2014.
Spc. Wyatt J. Martin from Mesa, Arizona, was killed in action in Parwan Province on Dec. 12, 2014.
Sgt. Douglas J. Riney from Fairview, Illinois, was killed in action in Kabul Province on Oct. 19, 2016.
Staff Sgt. John W. Perry from Stockton, California, was killed in action in Bagram Province on Nov. 12, 2016.
Pfc. Tyler R. Iubelt from Tamaroa, Illinois, was killed in action in Bagram Province on Nov. 12, 2016.
Sgt. 1st Class Allan E. Brown from Takoma Park, Maryland, was killed in action in Parwan Province on Nov. 12, 2016.
Sgt. Riney’s widow, Kylie Riney, and mother Pam Boland, attended the ceremony and said having Riney’s name added to the memorial was important.
“It means a lot just to know that he won’t be forgotten, that he will always be a hero to everybody,” Boland said. “He was amazing, he volunteered to help everybody.”
Kylie Riney said Douglas was on his third deployment when he was killed along with a civilian contractor after encountering hostile enemy gunfire.
“The way I look at it is he went over there with all of his brothers and left with a new brother that he just met; he didn’t go alone, and he will never be alone,” Kylie Riney said.
Julianne Perry, the widow of Staff Sgt. John Perry, along with 6-year-old daughter Lena and 5-year-old son Gavin were also present at the ceremony.
“He was a really great leader, a great dad and he loved doing his job,” Julianne Perry said. “I’m really thankful that we have children because I can see bits and pieces of my husband through my children.”
The memorial was last updated and rededicated in 2010.