Thursday, September 30, 2004

Army Staff Sgt Darren J. Cunningham

Remember Our Heroes

Army Staff Sgt Darren J. Cunningham, 40, of Groton, Massachusetts.

SSG Cunningham died in Baghdad, Iraq, when his unit came under mortar attack. He was assigned to the 89th Military Police Brigade, Fort Hood, Texas.

A 28-year veteran soldier, Army Staff Sergeant Darren J. Cunningham was killed in his sleep during a mortar attack in Baghdad, Iraq. The shell struck the trailer in which he was housed as part of the 545th Military Police Company of the First Cavalry Division.

Darren Cunningham, 40, of Groton joined the Army at 18 and had served in the military ever since. He was a veteran of the first Gulf War in 1991.

“Darren died doing what he wanted to do,” said his sister, Kelly Sumpter. “This was his choice.” He leaves a wife, a 12-year-old daughter and a 15-year-old son.

Cunningham was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, before being deployed to Iraq. His sister, Tracy Cunningham-Hammond, told the Lowell Sun that her brother had called home on Wednesday to say he’d be coming home in November, a month earlier than scheduled.

Cunningham-Hammond described her brother as a well-liked “clown” who loved his job with the military.

“He was the family jokester,” she said. “Just a fun-loving kind of guy, but he was always concerned about other people and made sure everyone was OK.”

She said her brother stayed in touch with his old high school friends and even befriended his first wife’s new husband, who was serving with him in Iraq.

Army Staff Sgt Darren J. Cunningham was killed in action on 09/30/04.

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