Saturday, October 23, 2010

Army Spc. Ronnie J. Pallares

Remember Our Heroes

Army Spc. Ronnie J. Pallares, 19, of Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.

Spc. Pallares was assigned to 27th Engineer Battalion, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died Oct. 23, 2010 in Andar district, Ghazni province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device.

Fallen Bragg soldier knew he wanted to join Army
The Associated Press

Spc. Ronnie Pallares liked writing, music and following his favorite teams, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Lakers.

When he was growing up in Rancho Cucamonga, his family saw him going into journalism or becoming a police officer. They didn’t know he had any interest in joining the military, his mother told the Los Angeles Times.

So, it came as a surprise in 2008 when a 17-year-old Pallares asked his mother for permission to enlist in the Army.

“I looked him straight in the eye and asked him, ‘You are telling me that you are willing to die for this country?’ He stood up and said, ‘Yes, Mom. Either you sign this or I will sign up when I am 18.’ I decided to support him,” Brenda Pallares told the Times.

Ronnie J. Pallares, 19, of Rancho Cucamonga, was killed in an explosion on Oct. 23 in Ghazni, Afghanistan. He was assigned to Fort Bragg.

His mother said he was weeks away from leaving Afghanistan, and they both were eager for his return home.

Pallares had a positive attitude, said his Little League coaches Dawn and Ronald Smith, and on a recent trip home, he had talked about also coaching one day.

“Things could be looking bad, and he would say, ‘Let’s turn it around!’“ Dawn Smith said. “He was always trying to help the other guys on the team.”

He wrote this on his Face Book page: "There is nothing more comforting in life for a man then to know the love of a wonderful woman" I love you Vanessa. :) I'm Ronnie Pallares, originally from Rancho Cucamonga California. I moved to North Carolina when i joined the army. I love my family and friends, here and there, and of course Vanessa Jauregui. I am taken...

From his Mom Brenda's FB page:

Monday: Brenda Pallares: Would like to thank everyone for your prayers and support, It has become real now,That i lost my baby. Just remember HIS BEAUTIFUL SMILE!!!

His uncle Vince Pallares wrote the following on his FB page: Vince Pallares: I have lost one of the greatest friends a person can have, if you had the pleasure of ever knowing or meeting him you are a lucky person....I miss you Pumpkin...Vince Pallares: Today My Nephew Ronnie J. Pallares died in Afghanistan,... I am at a loss for words

Pallares' company commander, Capt. Jeffery Donaldson, said in a statement that Pallares was known for his friendly attitude and the proficiency with which he did his work. He helped newer soldiers overcome the initial fear of being in a war zone and was loved by his leaders, who thought his promotion to specialist would only be the beginning of a long career and successful life, he said.

"Because we loved him so much after such a short time, we can't imagine how painful this must be for his family and loved ones," Donaldson said in the statement. "This is an unspeakable tragedy, one from which nobody will ever fully recover. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ronnie's family and our memories will forever be full of the cherished goodness he showed us during the time we were lucky enough to have him."

"I've literally never seen a group so happy to promote someone as when his platoon put the rank on his chest. Everybody was looking forward to witnessing the incredible potential of Ronnie Pallares -- a fact that makes his early passing so much more painful," Donaldson said.

According to the Army, Pallares enlisted in 2008 and arrived at Fort Bragg in February 2009, when he was assigned to the 57th Sapper Co. This was his first deployment, Fort Bragg officials said.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger issued a statement honoring the young soldier. "We honor (Pallares') courage and commitment to our country," the statement said. "As they mourn this tragic loss of a young life, Maria and I offer our deepest condolences to Ronnie's family, friends and fellow soldiers." In honor of Pallares, Capitol flags will be flown at half-staff.

Pallares' awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Combat Action Badge and Parachutist Badge.

Army Spc. Ronnie J. Pallares was killed in action on 10/23/10.

1 comment:

SGT Sharp, Lloyd D. said...

I was a crew chief on the medevac aircraft that carried his remains back to FOB Ghazni. I never knew him, but I find myself thinking of him often. Its like a scar in my mind i cant get rid of. But from what i read it was a tragic loss. My deepeset condolences to the family.