Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Culver Orders Flags Flown at Half –Staff to Honor Soldier Killed in Iraq

Gov. Chet Culver has ordered that all flags in the state be flown at half staff from 8 a.m. until sunset on Wednesday, Feb. 27, in honor of Army Spc. Chad Groepper, 21, of Kingsley, who died on Feb. 17 from wounds suffered in Iraq. Funeral services for Groepper will be held at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday at Kingsley-Pierson High School.

Groepper was killed in Diyala Province Iraq when enemy forces attacked his dismounted patrol using small arms fire. He had been serving in Iraq for nearly one year with the 2nd Battalion 23rd Infantry Regiment, 4th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, based in Fort Lewis, Wash.

Groepper enlisted in the Army after graduating in 2004 from Kingsley-Pierson High School. He leaves behind his wife, Stephanie, and their 4-month-old daughter, Clarissa, who was born just four weeks before he came home on leave last year.

Groepper is also survived by his parents, Darcy and David, and his two sisters, Denae, 26, of Granger, and Abbie, 24, of Kingsley. His unit had been scheduled to return to the United States from Iraq sometime between mid-May and July.

“We had just been counting the days until he came home,” his mother told the Des Moines Register.

Groepper was the 65th person with Iowa ties to die in Iraq or Afghanistan since March 2003.

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