NEWS RELEASES from the United States Department of Defense
No. 1342-05 IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 31, 2005
Media Contact: Army Public Affairs – (703) 692-2000 Public/Industry(703)428-0711
DoD Identifies Army Casualty
The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Private First Class George A. Lutz, II, 25, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, died in Fallujah, Iraq, on December 29, 2005, when his dismounted patrol was attacked by enemy forces using small arms fire. Lutz was assigned to the Army's 9th Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychologial Operations Group, U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
For further information related to this release, contact Army Public Affairs at (703) 692-2000.
Slain soldier always thought of others
Tony Lutz was ‘proud to be a soldier'
Stanley B. Chambers Jr., Staff Writer
Courtesy of the News & Observer
Three-year-old Anthony Lutz III has been upset within the past few days.
“He asked me yesterday when Daddy was coming home, and I didn't know how to explain it to him,” Tiffany Lutz said. “I really didn't say anything.”
Her husband, U.S. Army Private First Class George A. “Tony” Lutz II, was killed in Iraq on Thursday when his patrol was attacked by small- arms fire.
Lutz, 25, of Virginia Beach, Virginia, was assigned to the 9th Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychological Operations Group, U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command. He was deployed to Iraq in November and was scheduled to return in July.
“He told me if this ever happened, that he was very proud to be a soldier, and he was proud to go and fight for his country, and that he was glad to go to Iraq,” Tiffany Lutz said.
Tony Lutz always wanted others around him to enjoy themselves, said his father, George Lutz. Once, after a baseball game during his younger days, he pulled off his socks and did an impromptu puppet show for his teammates. Tony played baseball at Atlantic Shores Christian School and was captain of the cross country team at Shenandoah University in Winchester, Virginia.
“He thought about everyone else and how everyone was doing and what everybody might be going through,” George Lutz said. “He was looking to make sure that everybody had a good time.”
Relatives spent New Year's Day at Fort Bragg making funeral arrangements. Plans include burial at Arlington National Cemetery.
Tony is survived by his wife and two children, George Anthony III, 3, and 5-month-old Ava.
At least 2,178 members of the U.S. military have died since the beginning of the Iraq war in March 2003, according to an Associated Press count.
Fun-Loving Father of Two Is Laid to Rest
Army Corporal Killed in Fallujah Unafraid of Mission
By Lila de Tantillo
Courtesy of the Washington Post
Saturday, January 14, 2006
Corporal George A. Lutz II of Virginia Beach was known not only for his easygoing manner but also for his dedication and commitment to what mattered most to him — family, church and country.
Lutz, 25, was killed December 29, 2005, in Fallujah, Iraq, when enemy forces fired on his patrol. He was buried yesterday at Arlington National Cemetery, the 213th person to die in Operation Iraqi Freedom laid to rest there.
More than 100 mourners gathered beneath a gray afternoon sky as an honor guard carried Lutz's silver coffin to the grave site. A ray of sunshine pierced the fog as the honor guard lifted the American flag that draped the coffin.
Brigadier General David A. Morris presented the flag to Lutz's wife, Tiffany. Another flag was given to his parents, George A. and Patty Lutz. Other survivors include his children, Anthony and Ava, and siblings Kenny Lutz, Hannah Lutz and Sarah Hummel.
As a teenager, George Lutz — who was known as Tony — was known for his wild T-shirts and hairstyles, his locks having gone through a progression of colors including black, white and indeterminate mixtures of hues.
“He helped contribute to some of the things we had to write” in the student handbook, recalled Keith Hall, headmaster of Atlantic Shores Christian School in Chesapeake, Virginia. Hall, who had known Lutz since middle school, said the free-spirited youth was never in real trouble. “He was more mischievous than he was rebellious,” Hall said.
In high school, Lutz ran cross-country and played basketball. At pep rallies, he never failed to inspire classmates with his enthusiastic antics and shouts, friends said. He played football in the street with the neighborhood kids and liked to play jokes on his friends.
Shortly before his deployment to Iraq in November, Lutz stopped by his former high school. Hall said he was impressed by how the fun-loving Lutz had stayed true to his character but also matured into a devoted family man and soldier.
“He was very upbeat and very positive about going to Iraq and wasn't fearful at all,” Hall said. He said Lutz told him: ” ‘I was trained for this, and I'm ready to go do it.' “
After high school, Lutz attended Shenandoah University for several years and then dropped out. He married his high school sweetheart and joined the Army. He doted on Anthony, 3, and Ava, 5 months.
Anthony and Ava have received full scholarships to attend Atlantic Shores Christian School through 12th grade, Hall said.
Lutz was assigned to the Army's 9th Psychological Operations Battalion, 4th Psychological Operations Group, U.S. Army Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command, based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. He was sent to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and helped rescue two elderly women after hearing voices from a house that had been searched.
On January 7, 2006, more than 1,000 people packed Atlantic Shores Baptist Church to celebrate Lutz's life. Most attendees — including family members — wore jeans and Redskins T-shirts in recognition of Lutz's favorite team.
The Rev. Morris Barnett, pastor of Cliffdale Community Church in Fayetteville, North Carolina, presided over yesterday's service at Arlington. Lutz had been active at Cliffdale while stationed at Fort Bragg, and his wife teaches preschoolers at the church. Lutz was known for always being at her side and helping out with the class.
“He was a man of deep faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and he had no question about the assignments he had,” Barnett said in an interview. “Those who knew Tony loved him because he was as dependable as the day is long.”
A Brave, Fallen Hero
By Charlene Israel
Courtesy of CBN News
20 March 2006
This week marks the third anniversary of the war in Iraq. Since that time, more than 2,300 U.S. soldiers have sacrificed their lives for freedom.
Arlington National Cemetery is where some of America's bravest heroes have been laid to rest.
Corporal Tony Lutz is one such hero, killed by an Iraqi sniper just six weeks into his deployment.
Lutz was a husband, father, son, and brother — a man always more concerned about others than himself.
Tony's father, George Lutz, remembers that “he was an awesome individual; he touched the lives of every person he came in contact with.”
During his memorial service, family and friends paid tribute to the man known for his love — love of family, country, and God.
One of Tony's friends says, “Tony's most important thing was his faith. I had the privilege of watching his faith grow — from seeing him be the absolute joker in high school and just messing around and being silly, being himself…to tightening up to becoming a man of God.”
“He laid down his life for us,” says an Army comrade. “He laid down his life for his family. He laid down his life for the people in Iraq, who deserve the same freedoms that we do.”
Tony's wife, Tiffany, agrees, calling him an inspiration. She says he was the bravest man she had ever known and considers herself blessed to have been his wife.
People who knew Tony Lutz say he was a man filled with passion and faith — the same kind of faith that now comforts his family during the darkest time in their lives.
Patty Lutz, Tony's mother, recalls, “We dedicated him to God as a baby, and God just brought back to my mind all the blessings, and I was just crying — not for grief, but crying for joy.”
As Tony's family copes with his death and the sacrifice he made for others, they are reminded of another sacrifice.
“I was thinking as a father losing a son,” says Tony’s dad. “And then I thought about God sending Jesus to die for us, and I felt as if God was saying to me, ‘I know what it feels like because I did it — I sent My Son and it hurts, and I know it hurts but that's why I did it.’ It just gave me a peace.”
Although Tony is missed by his family and the tears often flow, his family's faith is still strong.
Tony's grandmother Teri Lutz says, “We know that he's really happy in heaven where he is, and that we're not to worry about where he is, because he's already there, and that he wants us to know that so that we can concentrate on loving God, not blaming God for Tony getting killed.”
Tony's sister Sarah concurs. “I don't understand how God works,” she began. “I don't know why things happen, but I just have to understand that He's in control and He knows what's going on. And He's there for me and He's there for our family. Whatever happens, it's not more than we can handle.”
But that does not mean it is always easy.
Hannah recalls, “Growing up, he'd always be like, ‘You're just so beautiful, no one could even compare to you’ — it's just really hard (crying).”
Tony's family says he supported the war in Iraq 100 percent, and despite the dangers, he looked forward to the mission, something he felt was a calling from God.
“He was excited to go,” Sarah remembers. “He knew. He understood what was going on over there. He understood about why we are fighting, and he wanted to be there.”
But one thing that bothered Tony about the war was here at home.
“All this protest that was going on against the war, and the people that were showing up and saying that it was wrong and getting on the president about it… Tony really got visibly angry and told his wife, ‘Don't you ever do that…if something were to happen to me, don't you ever do that,’” Tony’s father recalls.
But what many will remember most about Tony was his deep faith, something he took with him when he left for war.
“When the chaplain was over in Iraq visiting Tony and his team,” his dad comments, “one of the things that he noticed was that Tony had a Bible next to his bunk. He said that's unusual. A lot of soldiers don't have that.”
And on the day Tony was killed, he and a fellow soldier earlier that day had talked about what was most important.
His dad remembers, “They were talking about heaven….they were agreeing and relating to each other how important it was to have God in your life in the situation that they were in. And I don't know if it was a lighthearted conversation or a serious conversation, but I know that he was conscious of God's presence that day.”
Because of that, Tony's wife, Tiffany, says goodbye does not mean forever.
“He will be missed more than I can express,” she says. “Tony was so proud to be a soldier, and I can't wait to see him again in heaven.”
LUTZ, GEORGE A II
CPL US ARMY
- DATE OF BIRTH: 12/12/1980
- DATE OF DEATH: 12/29/2005
- BURIED AT: SECTION 60 SITE 8306
ARLINGTON NATIONAL CEMETERY
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