Personnel in Incident:
Spc. Jamaal R. Addison, 22, of Roswell, GA; Pfc. Howard Johnson II,
21, of Mobile, Ala.
in action (later declared KIA):
Master Sgt. Robert J. Dowdy, 38, of Cleveland, Ohio; Pvt. Ruben
Estrella-Soto, 18, of El Paso; Spc. James M. Kiehl, 22, of Des Moines,
Iowa; Chief Warrant
Officer Johnny Villareal Mata, 35, of El Paso; Pfc. Lori Ann Piestewa,
23, of Tuba City [see below] Ariz.; Pvt. Brandon Ulysses Sloan, 19, of Bedford,
Ohio; and Sgt. Donald Ralph Walters, 33, of Salem, Ore. [see
Spc. Edgar Adan Hernandez, 21, of Mission, Texas; Spc. Joseph Neal
Hudson, 23, of Alamogordo, N.M.; Spc. Shoshana Nyree Johnson, 30, of El
Paso; Pfc. Patrick Wayne Miller, 23, of Walter, Kan.; and Sgt. James
Joseph Riley, 31, of Pennsauken, N.J.
more members of the unit were wounded, but managed to hold off or evade
enemy forces until a Marine unit arrived to help evacuate them.
Compiled by P.O.W. NETWORK from one or more of the following: raw data
from U.S. Government agency sources, correspondence with POW/MIA
families, published sources, interviews. June 2004.
A group of about 20 members of the 507th was ambushed near An Nasiriyah,
Iraq on the fourth day of battle by civilian-clothed Iraqi forces. The
soldiers were supplying the 3rd Infantry Division in its drive to
Baghdad in central Iraq when they took a wrong turn. Broadcast pictures
showed the convoy with a vehicle that appeared to have its tires shot
out, another was overturned. Six vehicles were destroyed according to
507th, which deployed with the 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, was
not considered a combat unit, Defense Department officials said. Made up
mostly of mechanics, the 507th keeps the diesel tanker trucks rolling,
fixes generators and keeps the mechanical parts in good shape.
was a supply clerk, and during the attack, the vehicle driven by Lori
Ann crashed into the back of a jackknifed tractor-trailer truck in front
of her, resulting in massive injuries she would later succumb to. Her
passenger was Jessica Lynch.
The Washington Post reported that the
unconscious Pfc. Lynch and her still-alive friend Pfc. Lori Piestewa, a
single mother of two small children, arrived at a nearby medical/Iraqi
headquarters facility three hours after the ambush.
Piestewa's original status was updated
only after she was shown alive and unconscious in an Iraqi TV shoot
which was not aired before the fall of Baghdad. The tape was shown
on 30 Dec 2003 on the NBC Nightly News. The U.S. Army's report on the
ambush of the 507th Maintenance Company also notes that Piestewa was
captured and died in captivity.
became the first female American soldier killed in the Iraq war.
She was one of a handful of Native American women serving in the U.S.
By Rudi Williams
American Forces Press Service
ARLINGTON, Va., May 27, 2003 - Army Spc. Lori Piestewa didn't move a
mountain, but her death on the battlefield in
Iraq touched a nation and changed a mountain's name.
"Squaw Peak," the Phoenix summit with a name that's offensive
and controversial to some, is now "Piestewa Peak"
- a hero's name.
Among other tributes to the fallen warrior, Piestewa and five others are
featured in "Voices," a new exhibit that opened at the Women's
Memorial on May 26 to honor and highlight the contributions of Native
American women who serve in the armed forces.
A Hopi Indian, Piestewa was given special honors by tribal
representatives from across the country because she was the first
service woman killed in action in Operation Iraqi Freedom and the first
known Native American service woman known to have been killed in combat.
The 23-year-old soldier from Tuba City, Ariz., died from injuries when
her unit, the 507th Maintenance Company, was ambushed on March 23 near
Nasiriyah, Iraq, by enemy forces in Iraq. She was promoted posthumously.
Her family and representatives from several nations and tribes - among
them Hopi, Navajo, Oneida, Odawa, Chukchansi-Mono, Kumeyaay, and
Lakota/Dakota -- were here for the exhibit's unveiling ceremony.
In keeping with Native American heritage and culture, the tribes
showered the Piestewas with gifts - blankets, shadow boxes, paintings
and eagle feathers.
For example, Vice Chairman Aaron Jones and council members Rob Castro
and Craig Martinez from the Table Mountain Rancheria Chukchansi-Mono
tribe, presented the Piestewa family four blankets representing life,
love, strength and knowledge and reason.
Piestewa's brother, Adam, told the large audience that on Memorial Day
everyone should remember and salute all men and women of the armed
services and their families "for their tireless efforts and
willingness to sacrifice all they have to give in the name of
"We remember those innocent souls whose lives were not lost in vain
on the morning of Sept. 11th," Piestewa said. "We honor the
warriors who have throughout history laid down their lives for their
fellow man and preserved the God given right to freedom."
For Hopi tribe chairman Wayne Taylor Jr., Memorial Day has always been
set aside as a time to honor fallen veterans. "But it should also
be a time to honor all veterans, male, female, reserve, active duty,
Hopi, Hispanic, Asian, Caucasian and African-American," he noted.
"It should be a time to reflect and be grateful for the few who
valiantly defend what we have grown accustomed to.
"It should not be limited to this day, or times of conflict and
war, but it should be recognized and observed in some fashion every
day," Taylor said. "We need to be daily reminded that it is
the contribution of our veterans which gives us the opportunity to live
Taylor said after Lori Piestewa was killed in action, the most
frequently asked question on the Hopi reservation was: "Why did
Lori join the Army?"
"Many have speculated and derived their own answers," Taylor
noted. "Perhaps it was because she followed in the legacy of those
before her - her father, a Vietnam veteran, and her grandfather, a World
War II veteran.
"Maybe it was because of early ROTC involvement," he said.
"Only Lori could give us the answer. Whatever the reason, the
question should not be why did she, but rather, why is
it strange for her not to?"
The tribal chairman said Piestewa and the other five veterans being
honored, as well as many other Native American women who enlist in the
armed forces, "joined because of one reason that unites us all:
They were Americans," Taylor said, "Americans who simply
answered the call of duty. And we are grateful to them and to all of
those who continue to do so."
Taylor pointed out that only 111 of the hundreds of Native American
women veterans have registered at the Women's Memorial. "I would
like to encourage our Native American women veterans to register and be
counted for your contribution to this country," Taylor said.
Eagle feathers have long been the symbol of bravery, love, honor,
friendship and mystical powers. And that's just what Oneida Indian
Daniel King, president of the Wisconsin Indian Veterans Association,
presented the family along with a shadow box.
Before making the presentation, King said, "We may indeed put Pfc.
Lori Piestewa to rest, but her example of warriorism, her response to
the call, her courageous example of honor in the face of horror, brings
honor to us
King said Piestewa will be mentioned in the annals of Indian heroes
throughout the course of time. And it's well deserved.
"There is an old warrior saying: 'When you adorn yourself with the
implements of war, you are ready to kill. It is only right then, you
must be prepared to die as well,'" King noted. "As Indian
people, we know how to face war, we know how to sacrifice, we know how
to honor, we know courage. We know how to remember."
The exhibit will remain at the Women's Memorial through November,
American Indian Heritage Month. The memorial is the nation's only major
memorial honoring all service women -- past, present and future.
Crash caused Lynch's 'horrific injuries'
July 9, 2003
By Rowan Scarborough
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
The Army will release a report tomorrow on the ambush
of the 507th Maintenance Company in Iraq that will show Pfc. Jessica
Lynch and another female soldier suffered extensive injuries in a
vehicle accident, but not from Iraqi fighters.
The deadly March 23 battle in Nasiriyah, in central
Iraq, has emerged as perhaps the most famous incident in the war - both
for what happened and for what was reported to have happened, but did
Posted on Thu, Apr. 08, 2004
Lynch to sign autographs for coin company to raise money
CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Former prisoner of war Jessica Lynch has agreed to
sign autographs for a California company that sells limited edition
coins to collectors to raise money for her foundation.
The 20-year-old Palestine native's autograph will accompany
commemorative coins sold by the Professional Coin Grading Service of
Newport Beach, Calif......
May 2004, Pentagon officials also changed the status on Sgt. Donald Ralph Walters, 33, of Salem,
Ore. His status was changed to DIED in CAPTIVITY.