Saturday, August 13, 2011

Army 2nd Lt. Joe L. Cunningham

Remember Our Heroes

Army 2nd Lt. Joe L. Cunningham, 27, of Kingston, Okla.

2nd Lt Cunningham was assigned to 1st Battalion, 179th Infantry Regiment, 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Oklahoma Army National Guard, Stillwater, Okla.; died Aug. 13, 2011 in Laghman province, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained in a non-combat incident.

Lt Cunningham was raised in Kingston, OK, where he graduated from High School in 2003.

He worked at the Texoma Land Fun Park, CM Trailers and Marshall County Sheriff's Office as a jailer. In November of 2001, he joined the Army Reserves as a Military Policeman.

In 2005 he moved to Okla. City to attend college with plans to apply for the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. He attended Oklahoma City Community College, received his Associate Degree from Oklahoma State University-OKC, and was currently attending the University of Central Oklahoma, working for his Bachelor Degree in Sociology.

He volunteered to go to Iraq in 2005, where he served as a Team Leader. After returning from Iraq, he served as a Weapons Instructor for deploying soldiers. In 2008, he switched to the Oklahoma National Guard, serving 18 months in the Air Guard before moving on to the Army Guard, where he was accepted to Officer Candidate School. He was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant last year.

Lt. Col. Max Moss of the Oklahoma Army National Guard said about 2Lt. Cunningham: “After earning the rank of sergeant and demonstrating outstanding character and leadership potential, he was selected to attend Officer Candidate School. He will be greatly missed by all of us in uniform that knew him and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends as they cope with his loss,”

He enjoyed hunting, fishing and sports. Joe was a big Oklahoma Sooners fan and held season tickets for the Oklahoma City Thunder.

“Everybody just thought the world of him,’ said Natalie Cheairs, family friend. ‘We all grew up in Soldier Creek,” Cheairs said. “Joe rode his bike around when he got older and he always had a smile on his face.”

Joe you were a great Sgt and I will be there to say my goodbyes tomorrow, but you will never be forgotten!! You were one of the best that I had deployed with in Iraq!! 26 August, 2011

September 01, 2011
I can't believe you are actually gone. I miss getting a text message every morning or you poking me on Facebook.I know your in a better place and you get to see your mom and grandmother agian i know they are proud of you for everything you have done in your life.I will miss you dearly wish we could have went out like we having been planning forever but i will see you agian and see that smile on your sweet face. love and miss you a lot Joe you were a great person and i am very proud to say i knew you. ~ sarah c., del city, Oklahoma

August 28, 2011
I knew Joe he was an ispiration to the soldiers of Bco. 1/179 he always put soldiers first he is what a soldier wanted to be professional thru and thru in the short time I had to work with him he truly opened my eyes and changed my views on things he was and always will be a great friend and a soldier that will be greatly missed
God Bless Joe Cunningham may god watch and protect you thru the gates of heaven you shall be missed ~ John B., Tishomingo, Oklahoma

August 25, 2011
I worked with Joe at the Marshall County Jail. He was a great young man and will be greatly missed. I'm praying for you Joe.......

August 20, 2011
You will be missed by all. It was pleasure and an honor to have you as troop under my supervision while assigned to the 138th Security Forces Squadron. RIP friend and brother. ~ MSgt Carl S., Tulsa, Oklahoma

Lt Cunningham's awards and decorations include the following:
Iraq Campaign Medal
Overseas Service Medal
Armed Forces Reserve Medal with M device
Global War on Terrorism Medal
Army Commendation Medal
Army Achievement Medal

Lt Cunningham is survived by father, Kirk Tucker, Kingston; siblings, Tracy, Terri, Bethany, Ashton, Ricky and Taylor. He was preceded in death by his mother, Dorothy Cunningham.

Army 2nd Lt. Joe L. Cunningham died 8/13/11.

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