National Military Family Bereavement Study

Malia Fry, widow of Marine Gunnery Sgt. John David Fry, who was killed in Iraq in 2006, holds up a picture of him and her three children at her office at Fort Hood's Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors on Thursday. Fry is participating in a study called the National Military Family Bereavement Study for survivors of service members who died while on active-duty status since Sept. 11, 2001.

Malia Fry’s future was taken away when her husband, Marine Gunnery Sgt. John David Fry, died March 8, 2006, in Iraq, while disarming an explosive.

“A lot of our plans are completely different. My life has completely changed,” said Fry, 36, of Lorena. “My life was living on a base and using the facilities. All my friends were military and now I had to leave that and I had to start over — 100 percent start over.”

Contact Sarah Rafique at srafique@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7549. Follow her on Twitter at KDHreporter.

I'm the education reporter at the Killeen Daily Herald. Follow me on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SarahRafique

(2) comments

armywife88

I am glad this bill has passed. I do feel bad for anyone losing their spouse while at war. I dont wish that on anyone, but I do know the soldier is automatically insured for $400,000 and the beneficiary (usually the spouse and/or the children ) receives $100,000 of that within 24 hours of the soldiers death. I am not saying thats enough to last for the rest of their lives. But it is something to get the house (or use to buy a house), or get car payments and credit cards paid off. I am saying families need a "what if" plan. My husband was deployed many times and there was a "what if" plan. One thing military wives need to do is stop depending on their soldiers paycheck. Get a job yourself, go to school, get a career. Some say "how can I do that when I got little kids at home?" Well there are online classes and you could probably find a sitter while you work, because most likely you have a lot of friends being that you are a military family. You have to be a go-getter. Your life is what you make it.

Eliza

@ When Fry learned of her minimal benefits, a worker at her local property tax office said, “too bad.”
Fry said it was painful to hear those words after already having to adjust to life as a single parent.
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There will be many people with those same thoughts, as a matter of fact, those type words were echoed by city hall employees when 100 % disabled vets were to be given a property tax break a few years ago. They stated 'they' couldn't do without the tax money.
Even a state rep. stated 'if we do it for them ,there will others come asking for something' . I've never forgotten his words.
But 85% of Texas voters were a little more loyal to these people who because of their disabilities, couldn't work at any job any longer and that bill was passed.

I remember this bill that now assist's military widows coming up few month ago, and remember also complaints coming from some corners about the Why do they need it, when we can use it.
But you widows -who have lived the life- of having to make due not only without your mates, but have to figure out a way to continue caring for your family by yourselves.

I think allowing military widows a break with their tax's is not going to break the cities of Texas or Texas itself.
And commend those who have the same though, and have brought this bill up.

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