Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Army Sgt. Christopher D. Gailey

Remember Our Heroes

Army Sgt. Christopher D. Gailey, 26, of Ochelata, Okla.

Sgt Gailey was assigned to 700th Brigade Support Battalion, 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, Oklahoma National Guard, Tulsa, Okla.; died Nov. 1, 2011 in Paktya province, Afghanistan, of wounds caused by an improvised explosive device. Also killed was Army Pfc. Sarina N. Butcher.

Sgt Gailey graduated from Caney Valley High School in 2005. He enlisted in the National Guard in 2004. He served as a motor vehicle operator.

This was Sgt Gailey's second deployment, having previously deployed to Iraq in 2007. He deployed to Afghanistan in June.

He loved to be outside riding four-wheelers and mudding with his friends.

Family friend, Heather Fugate, said, "He was one of the best guys around. He would do anything for you. That's the kind of guy he was.

"He was a fantastic father. He loved his little girl," she said.

Christopher's twin sister, Tina, spoke of emails her brother had sent her. She said that the death of a comrade had stirred him and that in the event that something should happen to him, he told her, "I want people to think I helped where I could when I could." He said, “I don’t want anyone to cry for me."

Chaplain David Jordan first met Gailey in the gym, said, "What I was so overwhelmed by was his tender heart," Jordan said. "He made such a difference in so many lives."

Chaplain Jordan said he and Gailey developed a strong relationship during their time in service together.

"The thing we shared at the time is we were both woefully out of shape," Jordan said. So they worked together to get ready for their upcoming deployment.

"Every day there would be a friendly smile and a welcome," Jordan said. "He was always glad to see me."

Jordan said it has been a difficult time for those in Oklahoma and the soldiers in the 45th IBCT, but Gailey had a particularly difficult time when one of his friends was killed there.

Father, Shan Gailey, said the last time he saw his son was when he came home for leave on his birthday in September.

Sgt Gailey's awards and decorations include:

Purple Heart
Bronze Star
National defense Service Medal
Army Service Ribbon
Armed orces Reserve Medal with "M" Device
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Iraq Campaign Medal
Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal
Oklahoma Long Service Ribbon

Sgt Gailey is survived by his parents, Tammy and Shan; daughter, Allison; siblings, Beau, Angelina and Kristina; paternal grandmother, Lela Belle Gailey; maternal grandparents, Carl and Carol.

Army Sgt. Christopher D. Gailey was killed in action on 11/01/11.

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