Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Army National Guard SSG Tommy I. Folks, Jr.

Remember Our Heroes

Army National Guard SSG Tommy I. Folks, Jr., 31, of Amarillo, Texas.

SSG Folks was assigned to the Army National Guard, 2nd Battalion, 142nd Infantry Regiment, 56th Brigade Combat Team, 36th Infantry Division, Amarillo, Texas.

The Prairie
By Krissy Mailman

Just recently, Army Staff Sgt. Tommy Folks, Jr., a resident of Amarillo, and a student at WTAMU, was killed in Iraq on Tuesday, Oct. 18.

According to KAMR's Web site, Tommy Folks Sr. said his son was someone you could always depend on.

"He was a quiet, reserved man, a very private person, but a solid citizen," Folks Sr. said.

"(I) Had an e-mail from him last week that he had lost the hearing on his right side, and we knew that he was close to an explosion then.

"And he said, `I`m just knocking out the days until I come home.` And then of course yesterday, (Oct. 19) the casualty officer showed up, and I knew, I knew he was gone," Folks said.

"A part of me is gone, but we'll survive. We'll go ahead and make it. He served his country very well, he was dedicated to his work and he believed on the cause of what we are trying to do over there," he said.

According to the Amarillo Globe-News, Tommy Folks was born Jan. 22, 1974.

He graduated from Amarillo High School in 1992. He was an honor student and was a member of the National Honor Society.

Dr. Eddie Henderson, head of the division of education, said Folks was a student in the teacher preparation program at the time of his deployment to Iraq.

He was registered for class in the fall of 2004.

The division of education is accepting contributions to the Division of Education Scholarship Fund in Sgt. Folks’ memory from the faculty and staff of the department.

Jim Rutledge, instructor of instructional technology & e-mentoring, said he had Folks in class.

"He was a very good student," Rutledge said.

"This is a very sad occasion."

Rutledge grew up in a small town in Oklahoma, where Folks’ grandparents lived right across the street from him.

"I knew of some of his family," Rutledge said. "I have known his step-mother all of my life."

Rutledge said that this unfortunate event could be a wake up call to students.

"Students need to pay attention to what is going on in the world and get involved in the process," he said.

According to the Amarillo Globe-News, some of Folks’ achievements while serving for the military include the Combat Infantry Badge, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Achievement Medal with six Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Good Conduct Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the National Defense Service Medal, the Armed Forces Expedition Medal and the Southwest Asia Combat Medal.

Army National Guard SSG Tommy I, Folks, Jr., was killed in action on 10/18/05.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Tommy Folks was a great man, I am proud to say I served with him in Iraq.