NEWS RELEASES from the United States Department of Defense
No. 450-07 IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 17, 2007
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. Private First Class Aaron M. Genevie, 22, of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, died April 16, 2007, in Baghdad, Iraq, of wounds sustained when his vehicle struck an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas.
19 April 2007:
Phones rang without pause Wednesday at McConnellsburg High School, where teachers and staff said they hope to honor a 2003 graduate who died Monday from injuries suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated in Baghdad.
Private First Class Aaron M. Genevie, who entered the U.S. Army in July 2005, was in his first deployment when his Humvee struck the IED, according to a military news release.
Described as polite and considerate, the 22-year-old transferred to the small Fulton County, Pennsylvania, school in his junior year. The school of approximately 300 was buzzing with talk about Genevie when the news broke, according to guidance counselor Shelly McMullen.
“We're very close-knit,” she said.
Biology teacher Craig Elbin remembered Genevie as being quiet and respectful, saying Genevie quickly made friends when he transferred. Elbin and Genevie exchanged e-mails after graduation when Genevie was living in Chambersburg.
“I remember that he was excited to finally be able to start his life on his own and was eagerly awaiting the start of his college career,” Elbin said.
Assigned to Troop B, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Genevie maintained a MySpace page that became an informal memorial this week.
Several friends wrote that they know Genevie is watching Troop B from heaven.
“I'm just thankful that I was able to be home and see him before he shipped out. I gave him a hug and told him I loved him. He said, ‘I love you too, bro,'” friend Zach Runk said.
Robin Shurley, whose husband was one of Genevie's close friends, fondly described the soldier's role at weekly parties, serving as the center of attention and regaling others with games and card tricks.
“He was outgoing,” Shurley said. “He was one of a kind.”
She said Genevie's time in Iraq had been primarily uneventful, and her husband, Private First Class Josh Shurley, joined him last week. The woman considered Genevie to be a younger brother and recently shipped two dozen cookies to him in a package that will never reach its intended recipient.
“It's really hard to let him go,” Shurley said.
Classmate Jenny Yankie called the U.S. Postal Service on Wednesday and is unsure if her latest letter reached Genevie.
“We all get caught up in what we're doing and never take time to appreciate people until it's too late,” Yankie said.
Genevie had a Superman tattoo on his chest and listed the character as a hero on his MySpace page.
“He was always Superman, and I never thought Superman wouldn't be around,” Yankie said.
Stephanie Eisch described Genevie, the best man at her wedding, as “easy-going and very genuine.”
Her husband, Private First Class Glenn Eisch, befriended Genevie while on base in Kansas and was with him in Iraq.
“Every time I talked to my husband, he was with him,” Eisch said. “This just killed my husband.”
Genevie's last comments on the MySpace page dealt with his belief in “fighting for the right causes.”
“Three hundred million people in the United States, and there's no way that people shouldn't do all they can to help people,” he wrote.
“He was doing this for his country,” Private First Class Robert DeVitto said.
The pair worked together at Milky Way Restaurant in Fort Loudon, Pennsylvania, and joined the Army around the same time. Genevie encouraged DeVitto to become a cavalry scout.
“When we worked together, he would always talk about his Mom and how he loved her so,” said Runk, who befriended Genevie while working at Milky Way Restaurant.
Runk described Genevie's tendency to say “yes ma'am” or “yes, sir” when speaking to his elders.
“We want to mourn in private,” said a man who answered the door at the Genevie home Tuesday. He and a woman at the house declined to be interviewed.
An Army spokesman said friends, comrades and family will be given the opportunity to mourn at a service later this week or early next week in Fort Riley, Kansas.
“We do it for all the Fort Riley soldiers. We do have memorials here,” said Master Sergeant Cameron Porter, who did not know when the body would be returned to the United States.
23 April 2007:
Beaver County native serving in Iraq died this week when his vehicle struck a roadside bomb.
The Pentagon has confirmed the death of Private First Class Aaron M. Genevie, 22, formerly of Rochester.
Genevie, who had been living in Chambersburg, died on Monday.
He was a scout for the 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, in Fort Riley, Kansas.
According to officials in Fort Riley, Genevie joined the Army in July 2005 and began serving with the 1st Infantry Division that November.
Though he graduated from McConnellsburg High School near Chambersburg in 2003, Private Genevie attended Hopewell High School a few years earlier.
His parents told the Beaver County Times that their son always wanted to be a soldier and will be deeply missed by everyone who knew him.
“He was a very good man, a very young man,” John Mason, a family friend, said Wednesday. “He will be missed by all his friends and family.”
In a special tribute on his MySpace.com page, a photo of Pfc. Genevie is shown with a sadly fitting quote from him: “It's the Soldier who salutes the flag, who serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag.”
Funeral arrangements are pending.
24 April 2007:
Funeral arrangements have been made for a Franklin County, Pennsylvania, soldier killed in Iraq last week.
Private First Class Aaron Genevie was killed after his vehicle was struck by a roadside bomb. He had only been in Iraq for about two months.
A viewing is being held this weekend for family and friends at Kelso Cornelius Funeral Home in Chambersburg from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. -9:00 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.
Genevie will be buried on Monday at Arlington National Cemetery.
1 May 2007:
At Section 60, Gravesite 8618, U.S. Army Specialist Aaron Michael Genevie was buried Monday at Arlington National Cemetery, two weeks after he was killed by an explosive device while serving in Iraq.
Genevie, of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, was 22 years old.
Dozens of people attended the 15-minute service on a warm, windy day. Genevie was given standard military honors.
While Genevie's family sat solemnly near his casket, Lieutenant Colonel James Gray, an Army chaplain, delivered a eulogy that mentioned “sacrifice” and “how precious life is.”
Six members of an honor guard held an American flag taut over the casket while Gray spoke.
Seven soldiers fired three volleys apiece.
As a bugler started to play taps, a woman in a dark dress turned and walked away from the crowd, about 20 paces.
Major General Sean Byrne knelt and presented a folded flag to Genevie's mother, Patricia.
Reporters and photographers were kept about 100 feet from the casket and the crowd during the funeral. From there, it was difficult to hear anything as the wind gusted.
Kara Anne McCarthy, the cemetery's chief of public affairs, escorted members of the media away just as the funeral ended, before Genevie's family and friends left.
McCarthy said there usually are 25 to 30 funerals per day at Arlington. On Monday, 32 were scheduled.
Volleys from another funeral could be heard in the distance during the service for Genevie.
A summary that McCarthy distributed says 330 military personnel from the war in Iraq are buried at Arlington National Cemetery.
Genevie died April 16, 2007. His Humvee in Baghdad hit an improvised explosive device, or roadside bomb.
He lived in Chambersburg after graduating in 2003 from McConnellsburg High School in Fulton County, Pennsylvania, according to his obituary.
He joined the Army in 2005 and was assigned to Troop B, 1st Squadron, 4th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, which is based in Fort Riley, Kansas.
GENEVIE, AARON MICHEAL
- SPC US ARMY
- DATE OF BIRTH: 08/31/1984
- DATE OF DEATH: 04/16/2007
- BURIED AT: SECTION 60 SITE 8618
- ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
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Michael Robert Patterson was born in Arlington and is the son of a former officer of the US Army. So it was no wonder that sooner or later his interests drew him to American history and especially to American military history. Many of his articles can be found on renowned portals like the New York Times, Washingtonpost or Wikipedia.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard