Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Army Cpl. Jarrid L. King

Remember Our Heroes

Army Cpl. Jarrid L. King, 20, of Erie, Pa.

Cpl. King was assigned to the 7th Engineer Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.; died Jan. 12, 2011 in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device. Also killed were Staff Sgt. Omar Aceves and Spc. Benjamin G. Moore.

Family friend Jeff Meade told the Erie Times-News that Mr. King aspired to a career in the military. Mr. Meade said Mr. King was "polite, popular and the first to help anyone who needed it."

Jarrid was a great young man and very popular. He was always polite and had a smile on his face.

Harbor Creek Athletic Director Andy Krahe said this:

He was very mature for his age. He was always, 'Yes, sir, no, sir.' He was one of the politest kids walking the halls. He was always pleasant and smiling, and he seemed to know what he wanted to do in the classroom and athletically.

King participated in Harbor Creek High School's wrestling program while in seventh, eighth and ninth grades.

Harbor Creek's wrestling head coach at that time was Mark Sallot, who currently serves as a volunteer wrestling coach at the school.

Sallot remembers immediately slapping a nickname on King when he began coaching him. I used to call him 'Subway,' when that Jared (Fogle) guy was doing all those commercials for Subway. Every time I'd see him at practice, I'd say, 'Boy, there's Jared, and he's lost a lot of weight.' He thought that was funny.

Jarrid King competed in the 119-pound weight class as a freshman -- the last year he wrestled.

Harbor Creek High School American History teacher and varsity baseball coach, Tim McQueeney instructed King during his sophomore year.

He was one of the most polite, well-mannered students I've ever been associated with. We certainly view Jarrid as an American hero. We appreciate what he and other military personnel around the world do for America.

When King returned home on leave in spring, he attended a few Harbor Creek baseball games to watch his two brothers play.

King's brother Jason is a senior, and his brother Johnathon is a sophomore. Both brothers pitch and play infield.

Cpl. King joined the Army in March 2009. Fort Drum was his first assignment after training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. His awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart and Combat Action Badge. Cpl. King is survived by his mother and father.

Obituary: Jarrid L. King / Soldier from Erie County serving in Afghanistan --
Nov. 6, 1990 - Jan. 12, 2011

A soldier who knew he wanted to join the military since the age of 15 and called people "sir" and "ma'am" even before entering the service died Wednesday in Afghanistan.

U.S. Army Specialist Jarrid L. King, of Harborcreek Township near Erie, died in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, after enemy forces attacked his unit with an explosive device on Wednesday, the Department of Defense said. He was 20. (The Army on Friday awarded Mr. King a posthumous promotion to corporal.)

Also killed were Sergeant Omar Aceves, 30, of El Paso, Texas, and Private First Class Benjamin G. Moore, 23, of Robbinsville, N.J. The three soldiers were assigned to the 7th Engineer Battalion, 10th Sustainment Brigade, 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, N.Y.

Mr. King was born in Millington, Tenn. He attended Harbor Creek High School; he was on the wrestling team in seventh through ninth grades.

Jeff Meade, a neighbor and family friend whose son grew up with Mr. King, said he loved him like a son. Mr. King, his two brothers Jason and Johnathan, and Mr. Meade's son were "very tight" and enjoyed wrestling together. Mr. Meade was at the King home Saturday and spoke on behalf of the family.

"It would be nothing to look outside the window and see all four of them twisted up in the back yard," Mr. Meade said.

Mr. King expressed a desire for a military career when he was about 15, Mr. Meade said.

"When anyone needed a hand, he was the first one there to help," Mr. Meade said. "That's why he went into the military -- it's what he always wanted to do."

Mr. King left for active duty in the U.S. Army in April 2009.

While serving in Afghanistan, he spoke with his father almost daily on the Internet, Mr. Meade said. One of his favorite things to do was to talk to his father's two dogs over the computer as well, Mr. Meade said.

When Mr. King's photo was recently shown on the television, the dogs ran up to the television and barked at it, Mr. Meade said.

"They thought they were talking to him," he said.

Mr. King felt a strong duty toward his country and was very proud of his work in Afghanistan, Mr. Meade said. While home on leave over the summer, he told family and friends stories about passing out candy to Afghan children.

"He told me they are making a difference over there," Mr. Meade said. "He was very adamant about that."

Spc. King is survived by his parents, Donald L. King Jr. and Laura Elizabeth Weaver King; and his brothers Jason, 18, and Johnathan, 15, all of Harborcreek; and grandparents Ann and Donald King Sr., of Wesleyville, Pa., and David and Judith Weaver, of Summerville, S.C.

Army Cpl. Jarrid L. King was killed in action on 1/12/11.

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