Sunday, January 24, 2010

Marine Lance Cpl. Timothy J. Poole

Remember Our Heroes

Marine Lance Cpl. Timothy J. Poole, 22, of Bowling Green, Ky.

LCpl Poole was assigned to 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force, Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii; died Jan. 24, 2010 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

LCpl. Timothy J. Poole Jr., 22, a 2007 graduate of Warren East High School, was killed Sunday during combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, according to the Department of Defense.

Poole served with the 1st Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force based in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. He grew up in Jacksonville, Fla., and moved with his family to Bowling Green in October 2005. After Poole enlisted, the family moved back to Jacksonville, where Poole will be laid to rest in Jacksonville National Cemetery.

He attended school in Bowling Green for just a short while, but he was remembered by many who knew him as a quiet, polite young man who wanted to be Marine.

Warren East agriculture teacher Dan Costellow taught Poole in two classes.

“I remember him as a nice kid who wanted to go into the military. I was happy for him and felt like it would help him figure out what he wanted to do with the rest of his life,” Costellow said. “Anytime you hear about a soldier being killed for us, it is sad, but this young man was my student. This is just terrible and upsets me a great deal.”

“Our hearts go out to his friends and family and all those who knew him,” said Cindy Beals, Warren East High School principal. Beals was an assistant principal at the school at the time Poole attended. “It is just a terrible thing,” she said.

Warren East Assistant Principal Edwin Moss remembers Poole, who attended the school for less than two years during his junior and senior years. “Some kids just have a presence and you remember them, and he did,” Moss said. “He was a nice young man, very mannerly. His desire at the time was to become a Marine. He just stood out.”

Sgt. Joel Extine, a Marine Corp. recruiter from Bowling Green, signed Poole up in 2007 following his graduation. “He was an excellent young man,” Extine said. “He came in that day with his dad and brother, was very polite and quiet. He said he had always wanted to be a Marine. He had the heart of a Marine and could run like the wind. He was the kind of kid we wanted to enlist.”

Poole attended Lee High School in Jacksonville before moving to Kentucky. He returned to Jacksonville in November before going back to his base in Hawaii and leaving for Afghanistan, telling family that if he died in action it would be in service to his country, a sacrifice he was willing to take, said Mike Lyons, assignment editor for WTLV/WJXX in Jacksonville, who spoke with Poole’s father, Timothy Poole Sr., as he was headed to Dover, Del., on Tuesday to await the return of his son’s body.

"The only thing he ever really wanted to do was serve his country and make his real dad proud and I think he done that," said his stepfather, Charles Martin. "Lance Corporal" was his title, but his family called him "Bubba."

Poole Sr. was too emotional to speak on camera Wednesday night, but described seeing his son's casket carried off the plane. "When you see it on the news, you don't think about it. But when you see the casket in person, it hits you," said Poole Sr.

Poole Jr. grew up at an area trailer park. Former neighbor Karen Stiers was busy taking calls from family and friends all day about Poole. She said she was still in disbelief. "I don't know from day to day if they are going to come home or if they're not going to come home. It's a hard thing," said Stiers.

Poole's father said his son was ready for anything, saying, "(My son) knew the price. We had talked about it. He didn't care. He understood the price for freedom."

Marine Lance Cpl. Timothy J. Poole was killed in action on 1/24/10.

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