Sunday, August 02, 2009

Army Sgt. 1st Class Alejandro Granado

Remember Our Heroes

Army Sgt. 1st Class Alejandro Granado, 42, of Fairfax, Va.

Sgt. 1st Class Granado was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Mississippi Army National Guard, Jackson, Miss.; died Aug. 2, 2009 in Qole Gerdsar, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. Also killed were Capt. Ronald G. Luce and Sgt. 1st Class Severin W. Summers III.

News-Journal -- TATUM — Family members say Alejandro Granado III told them he didn't feel good about his latest trip to Afghanistan.

"He told me that he had a bad feeling about going away — that he probably won't come back," his brother, Rolando Granado remembered.

"And here we are."

The family learned Sunday evening that retired Army Staff Sgt. Alejandro "Alex" Granado III was among three people killed during an ambush in eastern Afghanistan earlier that day. Granado, 42, retired from the Army less than a year ago but was serving in a secret mission for the U.S. government, family members said Monday. As of late Monday, the Department of Defense had not officially released information about the incident.

"We're hearing that they got attacked, and after that, they went in and finished them off," his brother said while sitting with family outside their Tatum home. "We've never really kept up with him because he was always gone. He could never tell us where he was."

Granado signed up for military service before graduating from Tatum High School in 1986.

"Instead of working out here somewhere in the sun, he joined as soon as he was 18," he said. "He loved to travel."

Granado spent three weeks with family and friends in June. His older sister, Tatum High School Cafeteria Manager Dionicia Cruz, remembers the eerie feeling she got when he asked her to always take good care of herself and his three kids — ages 19, 21 and 23.

"I asked, 'Why is that so important?' and he said, 'It would make me very happy to know you are all OK,'" Cruz said. "He was such a good boy."

Services for Granado are pending with Jimerson-Lipsey Funeral Home in Carthage.

"The family has contacted us, but we have not heard back from the military," said funeral home spokesman Don Lipsey. "If he died in eastern Afghanistan, it may be a week before we hear anything."

Another brother, 35-year-old Jose Granado, is scheduled for active duty in either Afghanistan or Iraq in October, family members said.

"That was their goal — protect the country," said Rolando Granado. "He was a good kid, man. A good kid."

Army Sgt. 1st Class Alejandro Granado was killed in action on 8/02/09.

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