Saturday, July 10, 2010

Marine Lance Cpl. Tyler A. Roads

Remember Our Heroes

Marine Lance Cpl. Tyler A. Roads, 20, of Burney, Calif.

LCpl. Roads was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C.; died July 10, 2010 while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

Family and friends of Marine Lance Cpl. Tyler Allen Roads spent Monday on what would have been his 21st birthday mourning and recounting memories of his life.

“Tyler was one of the finest young men I’ve ever met,” his stepmother, Liz Roads of Redding, said Monday by phone. “I couldn’t be more proud than to be his stepmother.” She rapidly listed off adjectives describing him. They included “considerate,” “loving,” “kind” and “responsible.”

“He’s a hero in my mind,” Liz Roads said.

The Burney man, who served in the 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment in Afghanistan, was killed Friday while manning his post.

His father, Travis Roads, made the forlorn journey with his mother, Sonia, and his 18-year-old sister Taylor this weekend to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to be there when his casket arrived in an Air Force jet. Roads had lived with his grandparents, Greg and Olivia Stevenson of Burney, before enlisting in the Marines. They also made the trip, Liz Roads said.

Liz Roads said his father and sister were en route from Dover on Monday, and news about Tyler Roads’ services remained pending until their return.

Meanwhile, Burney Lions Club had lowered the town’s flag to half staff. The giant American flag on North Bechelli Lane in Redding also was to be lowered Monday afternoon, said Mike Ferrier, the keeper of the flag for the Enterprise Lions Club.

The flag will be at half staff at least through today, Ferrier said.

Roads was a June 2007 graduate of Mountain View High School in Burney.

Michael Von Schalscha, Roads’ senior-year teacher at the school, described him as a smiling, good-natured gentleman with a wry sense of humor. “He loved telling stories about hunting and making fun of me that he was a better hunter than me,” Von Schalscha said. But, he said, there was a steely sense of responsibly behind the young man’s jocularity — Roads was a Marine to the core, even before he officially became one. “He came to my class his senior year pretty much with his mind made up about what he wanted to be,” Von Schalscha said. “He had that spark in his eye. He held his head really high.” Roads’ formers teachers met briefly Monday to share a moment of grief, Von Schalscha said.

Friends of Roads also spent Monday in mourning. Angie Wurster said her daughter, Megan, spent Monday in tears, crying for her former boyfriend. “Megan just turned 21 in May and told him that she would wait for him to go to the bar,” Angie Wurster said in an e-mail. The Wursters live in Oakland County, Mich. Wurster said she wanted to thank Roads’ family for raising such a wonderful young man. She described him as an artist who “created beautiful lines of music.”

“He was stunning,” she said.

Liz Roads said the outpouring of support from friends and family was expected. But she didn’t expect the complete strangers who approached the family offering heartfelt condolences. “He deserves it,” she said. “He absolutely deserves it.”

Marine Lance Cpl. Tyler A. Roads was killed in action on 7/10/10.

No comments: