Saturday, May 08, 2004

North Dakota Army National Guard Spc. Philip D. Brown

Remember Our Heroes

North Dakota Army National Guard Spc. Philip D. Brown, 21, of Jamestown, N.D.

Spc. Brown was assigned to Company B, 141st Engineer Combat Battalion, Army National Guard, Jamestown, N.D.; died May 8, 2004 in Balad, Iraq, from injuries sustained when an improvised explosive device went off west of Samarra, Iraq.

Jamestown remembers slain soldier
Associated Press

JAMESTOWN, N.D. — The father of soldier who died of wounds suffered in Iraq says he’s grateful for the hundreds of people who have stopped by to offer sympathy and tell stories about his son’s life.

“It helps us take away the pain,” said Richard Brown.

Philip Brown, 21, was a specialist with the North Dakota National Guard’s 141st Engineer Combat Battalion. He and Spc. James Holmes, 28, of East Grand Forks, Minn., another member of the 141st, died May 8 of wounds suffered in separate attacks.

Richard Brown said his son’s body had been returned to the United States on May 9.

Holmes’ family lives in Arizona. His funeral is tentatively scheduled for 2 p.m. Monday in National Memorial Cemetery in Phoenix, said Patty Fusco, a close friend and a spokeswoman for the family.

Jamestown Mayor Charlie Kourajian said he would order flags in Jamestown at half-staff from the time Brown’s body arrives home until after the funeral.

“Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the family,” he said. “We certainly are thinking about them.”

On Monday, the Brown’s home was filled with friends and family. The yard and inside of the home were decorated with photos, flags and other reminders of his life.

“My son is a brave, strong, courageous man who believed in duty, honor and country more than I can express,” Diedra Brown said.

“We’re sorry that God took him away from us but we don’t question why things happen,” the elder Brown said, in tears. “And we are grateful to have had him on this earth for 21 years and four months.”

Philip Brown was injured by a bomb while on foot patrol, officials said.

“The wounds were just too much for his strong young body to overcome,” his father said.

Jamestown High School Principal Larry Ukestad and Bill Nold, assistant principal, said Brown played football, basketball and baseball. He also was the disc jockey for some school dances.

“He enjoyed life in general,” Ukestad said.

“He had kind of a magnetism, charisma about him,” Nold said.

Many people knew him from Jack Brown Stadium, which is named after his grandfather.

“He was always a fixture,” Nold said. “If it wasn’t chasing a fly ball it was selling a hot dog.”

Jamestown College students wore yellow ribbons and observed a moment of silence to remember Brown on the weekend of their commencement.

“We unfortunately lost a terrific student,” College President Bob Badal said at Sunday’s ceremony.

North Dakota Army National Guard Spc. Philip D. Brown was killed in action on 5/8/04.

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