Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Army Capt. Ian P. Weikel

Remember Our Heroes

Army Capt. Ian P. Weikel, 31, of Colorado

Cpt Weikel was assigned to the 10th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Hood, Texas; died April 18, 2006 in Balad, Iraq, from injuries sustained when an improvised explosive device detonated near his Humvee during combat operations in Baghdad.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A former class president, star football and basketball player at Fountain-Fort Carson High School who attended West Point died after his vehicle was struck by a roadside explosive in Baghdad.

Capt. Ian P. Weikel, 31, was assigned to the 10th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, based at Fort Hood, Texas. He died Tuesday in Balad, which is about 42 miles north of Baghdad, the military said.

Weikel, of Colorado Springs was profiled in 1993 after being picked by The (Colorado Springs) Gazette as one of the “Best and Brightest” teenagers, the newspaper reported. While in high school — where he organized food drives and worked to get students to take a drug free pledge before they could buy prom tickets — Weikel dreamed of being an Air Force pilot.

He graduated with a 3.94 grade-point-average and went on to attend the Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.

“My life is regimented, and the challenges are hard. Anything worth having is, though,” he told the newspaper shortly after graduating.

www.rockymountainnews.com -- Sorrow spread through the Fountain-Fort Carson community Wednesday as friends and family learned of the death in Iraq of Capt. Ian P. Weikel, whose friends described him as a natural leader and problem-solver who led by example.

Weikel, 31, died in Balad, Iraq, on Sunday when an improvised explosive device detonated near the U.S. Army Humvee he was riding in during combat operations, the Department of Defense said.

A graduate of West Point, Weikel was assigned to the 10th Cavalry Regiment, the 1st Brigade Combat Team in the 4th Infantry Division based out of Fort Hood, Texas.

To his teachers and coaches at Fountain-Fort Carson High School, he was a bright and energetic young man who stood out from the moment they met him.

"Ian was a very special young man," said Mitch Johnson, who coached Weikel and his brother, Chad, on the varsity football team.

"You could tell that from the moment he walked through the door as a bright-eyed freshman," Johnson said.

Ian Weikel was the team quarterback and president of the student government in his senior year.

Michael Maiurro, a teacher at the high school, said Weikel "was the kind of kid who was always part of the solution."

Weikel married a fellow West Point graduate. He and his wife, Wendy, served overseas together in Europe. She was discharged back to Colorado Springs when they learned she was pregnant with their first child, Jonathan Troy, a boy born in August. Their son's middle name reflected the father's profession. Troy means "foot soldier", Maiurro said.

Maiurro last saw his former student when Weikel returned to Colorado Springs for a visit with his family and a chance to be with his wife and newborn son.

"He was no longer a student but a peer," Maiurro said. "He and I could talk politics and debate government."

"He was the kind of young man that we all could share," he added. "He was part of all of us."

Army Capt. Ian P. Weikel was killed in action on 04/18/06.

1 comment:

Bev said...

Amazing he was! And he's my nephew. I love you Ian and miss you so!!! Thank you for ALL you did! I can't wait to see him again. I know we will! Until then...