Update: The 4-23, 172 Stryker Brigade loses first soldier to sniper fire.


Back in July I wrote a post about the 4-23, the 172nd Stryker Brigade out of  Fort Richardson, Alaska, “172nd Stryker Brigade redeployed to Baghdad – Yahoo says so!.”  The troops in this Stryker brigade were redeployed and sent to Baghdad as part of Operation Together Forward while waiting in the Kuwaiti Airport to go home from their first deployment.

The unit had already served one tour in Iraq in Mosul and was at the airport in Kuwait preparing to leave when they learned their tour was extended for four more months. They were being sent to Baghdad to capture, kill, or drive the insurgency and foreign fighters out of the area.

This task was to be accomplished by dividing the area into sections and doing a house by house, building by building search.  The Iraqi Army was the lead force with American troops acting as advisors and a supporting force.

Once the area was cleared, the Iraqi police force would be installed in place and continue to provide order and support. The infrastructure would be resrored. Cleanup of debris was also part of the effort to restore the area. Also, help was to be provided to get businesses open and jump start the local economy.

Of course, many of the unit had already sent stuff home. All their families were impatiently awaiting their arrival. One of the redeployment did not go over well, especially since the troops found out from the media before the military had even told the troops their new destination. But, being the professionals they were, they did their squabling, and went about their new assignment as ordered.

Three weeks into the offensive, on Sept. 10, 2006, Cpl. Alexander Jordan was mortally wounded by a sniper. Cpl. Alexander Jordan, 31, of Blackhawk Company,  of the 4-23, the 172nd Stryker Brigade out of  Fort Richardson, Alaska was the first casualty the unit experienced. During their deployment in Mosul, miraclously, the unit experienced no casualties!

Newsweek  has a reporter embedded with the unit in Baghdad. Newsweek will be doing a series of reports called “War Stories,” that chronicle the 4-23 infantry battalion of the 172nd Stryker Brigade during their extended tour in Baghdad. The series covers the “daily lives of the soldiers and their families.”  The first article in the series, “The First Loss
On the 33rd day of the Battle of Baghdad, Cpl. Alexander Jordan is killed by a sniper.”
tells the story of Cpl. Jordan’s tragic death.

I have linked to the series by the individual articles done so far. I couldn’t link to the “Photo Gallery: Battle of Baghdad.” But if you go to any of the links below you can go to the gallery yourself by clicking on the gallery link.

I offer my sincerest condolances to Cpl. Jordan’s family, his friends, and the troops in the 4-23 infantry battalion of the 172nd Stryker Brigade. You troops have done a wonderful job. I know that your task is a difficult one. I pray your efforts are not in vain and that the rest of you will return home safely to your families. God Bless you all.

“War Stories:”
“The First Loss
On the 33rd day of the Battle of Baghdad, Cpl. Alexander Jordan is killed by a sniper.”

Photo Gallery: Battle of Baghdad
‘It’s Tearing Families Apart’
With the 4-23’s battalion’s Baghdad tour dragging on, Capt. Brad Velotta and his wife, Jodi, are finding it harder to cope.

‘A Great Army Wife’
Capt. Brad Velotta shares his thoughts about stress and how his extended Baghdad deployment is affecting his family

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~ by devildog6771 on October 10, 2006.

7 Responses to “Update: The 4-23, 172 Stryker Brigade loses first soldier to sniper fire.”

  1. This is one of the only places I have found this story, I’ve heard it from other wives for years. Of planes of soldiers touching down and turning around to fly back. Of 4 more months of deployment when it seemed at an end. Of broken hearts and sobbing spouses. None of the links work anymore, sadly I would have loved to have read and been able to quote some of the articles you mentioned.

  2. Sgt Burnside, thank you for taking time to post a comment. I am truly sorry about the loss of Cpl. Jordan. I pray for you, his family and his friends. When Mike was killed I found two great sites that offered something of comfort to children. One is Harms Way 4 Kids at:

    http://www.harmsway4kids.com/.

    This amazing young girl makes bracelets for the kids of fallen soldiers.

    The Linus Project makes comfort blankets for kids. They’re at:

    http://www.orgsites.com/ga/projectlinus/_pgg7.php3

    I realize Sgt Burnside this may too difficult for you. But maybe someone else can contact them. My nephew’s four little girls loved thiers. They especially liked the blankets.

    Thank you for your service and that of your buddies. May God bring some small measure of peace in your grief.

  3. cpl alexander jordan was my battle buddy and bestfriend, thanks for all of the comments and support going out to his family and friends. he is truely missed

  4. Thank you Buck. I am so sorry for the loss of this young man. We lost a loved one in OEF March 5, 2004, The pain is still with us all. You and your fellow soldiers will not forget Cpl. Jordan. But you will come to terms with his death. Get together often and have a beer or two and talk about him. It helps with the grief and allows you all to enjoy the memoery of the good times.

    God bless you all. I am glad you made it home safely. I feel honored you took time to thank me. I also feel honored to know that Michael is in the company of such men as your Cpl. Jordan!

  5. Thanks for mentioning Jordan and linking all those Newsweek articles. He was in my company and will be greatly missed by all who knew him. In nearly 16 months in Iraq across three major cities, he was the only loss in our battalion.

    CPL Alexander Jordan (1975-2006)
    R.I.P.

  6. Oh wow, that is really something. Thanks I will cheeck your post and relay it here too. Thanks ym.

  7. My prayers are with Cpl. Jordan’s family.
    and all the families who are going through this extended deployment.

    (You might be interested in my post I just put up. It’s about an organization that gives the kids of fallen soldiers a free trip to Disneyland – Snowball Express http://www.snowballexpress.org/index.html
    I’m trying to spread the word) ;o)

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