Dominican-American solider dies in Iraq

deelt

Bronze
Mar 23, 2004
987
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In today's (and yesterday's) NYTimes...WE ARE AMERICA! At least, for this one, Bush remembers that.

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/05/11/nyregion/11funeral.html

But she was really alone and she seemed to know it, weeping and staring blankly at her son's coffin in the center aisle. She had brought him to the United States from the Dominican Republic when he was 3. Twenty years later, on April 20, he was killed by a roadside bomb in Iraq, during a second tour of duty there.

His death came 31 months after his fianc?e, Analaura Esparza-Gutierrez, 21, an Army private from Houston, was also killed by a roadside bombing in Tikrit, Iraq. Three springs ago, Sergeant Gomez had proposed to her. Now both were gone.

Yesterday, church and state rose up, each in its ritualistic glory, to honor the brief life and sudden death of Sergeant Gomez. Father Healy tenderly anointed his coffin with incense, and gave the young man his final blessings. The ladies of Corona — some in veils — filled the pews. Army officers flanked the right side of the church, and a two-star general presented Mrs. Gomez with the purple star and bronze star that President Bush had authorized her son to receive.

Yet it all seemed to do little to lessen the grief of Mrs. Gomez, who appeared to grow smaller as those by her side supported her.

The loss of Sergeant Gomez hit her especially hard because he had always strived to take care of his mother. He was saving to buy her a house. He had called home on April 19, the day before he died, to have flowers sent to her for Mother's Day.

....cut...

Mrs. Gomez bore it all quietly. All Jose had wanted, she said in an interview last week, was to study mathematics and become an accountant. Raised in Corona, amid a warren of brick and clapboard delis, barbershops and bodegas, Jose quickly learned one uncompromising sum: his family's bank accounts could never support his schooling.

"We're poor," Mrs. Gomez had said. She works packaging air fresheners in a factory, and her husband, Mr. Jimenez, is a truck driver. "And if you go in the Army to get your degree, well that used to work out."

...cut...

Mrs. Gomez was supported to the side of the coffin.

"Mi Jose! Mi Jose! Mi hijo!" she wailed. "O Dios!"

She sobbed, and added, moaning in Spanish, "Why did it have to be my son?"

At the church, Father Healy said he was concerned about Mrs. Gomez. He stood near the altar, below a statue of the Virgin of Sorrow.

"Twenty-five hundred of these around the country," he said. "Can you imagine?"
 

Jon S.

Bronze
Jan 25, 2003
1,040
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Every time I read something like this, I think how it could've been me, simply by walking back to the temporary housing section set up for our guys or stepping out to go to work every morning. I lost count of the attacks on the installation but we were told it was over 150, including the last one 45 minutes before I got into the C-130 that took us out of Iraq. Makes me feel grateful that I didn't die over there. God bless his soul and bless his mother as well. I'm getting teary eyed thinking about this.
 

deelt

Bronze
Mar 23, 2004
987
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I know I am there with you.
What makes me even sadder is the fact that you are the only one to post. We are in the midst of an immigration debate and no one seems to care that real lives are on the line.
 

bienamor

Kansas redneck an proud of it
Apr 23, 2004
5,004
426
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I feel sorry for each and every one and the family

deelt said:
I know I am there with you.
What makes me even sadder is the fact that you are the only one to post. We are in the midst of an immigration debate and no one seems to care that real lives are on the line.

I feel sorry for each and every one of them and the family's. But on the other hand when you join the military this is an understood risk, if its not it should have been. This happened to happen in Iran, could have been a training accident, Afghanistan, VietNam, Beirut, Somalia, Serbia or anywhere/anything else.

My condolences to the family.
 

nonie0423

New member
May 9, 2006
7
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My prayers for the family....God Bless Sgt Gomez for helping make this world free for others....
 

M.A.R.

Silver
Feb 18, 2006
3,207
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...and the hardest thing for his mother is that she didn't know he was in Irak, he had told her he was in Texas when the army came to her house to give her the news that he was dead. She couldn't believe it, she told them, "no, no he is not in the war, he's in Texas, you're wrong". Its heart wrenching. He wanted to make a future for himself and his family and didn't want to worry his mother who had told him she didn't want him to go to war.