Nathan Lloyd Winder – Sergeant First Class, United States Army

U.S. Department of Defense

Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)
News Release

June 28, 2007

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Sergeant First Class Nathan L. Winder, 32, of Blanding, Utah, died June 26, 2007, in Ad Diwaniyah, Iraq, of wounds sustained from enemy small arms fire. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Lewis, Washington.

A 32-year-old soldier raised in Utah was killed in Iraq, a family spokesman said.

Sergeant Nathan Winder, who grew up in Blanding in southeastern Utah, died June 26 from small-arms fire while assisting soldiers in combat outside Diwaniyah, Bill Boyle said.


He was a Special Forces medic assigned to an airborne unit. Winder was part of the 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group, out of Fort Lewis, Washington.

A native of South Korea, Winder was 2 when he was adopted by Tom and Terri Winder of Blanding. He left the area 14 years ago to pursue a career in the armed forces.

“They’re shocked and sorrowed, like you’d expect. But they’re a strong family,” said Boyle, publisher of the San Juan Record, a weekly newspaper in San Juan County.

Winder was married and had an 11-year-old son.

Utahn killed in Iraq was ‘proud’ to serve country
By Lisa J. Church
Special to The Tribune
28 June 2007

Terri Winder remembers her son as a soft-hearted man with a tough shell who was loyal to friends and family and loved children.

“He cared about other people,” the Blanding mother said of her son, Nathan, who died Tuesday serving in the U.S. military in Iraq.

“He loved the children in Iraq and carried teddy bears and things to give them. He was trying to help two Iraqi children come to the states for medical attention.”

Sergeant First Class Nathan L. Winder, 32, a Special Forces medic assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group in Fort Lewis, Washington, died from wounds sustained during combat outside of Diwaniyah, Iraq, according to the U.S. Army Special Forces Command in Fort Bragg, North Carolina.


Sergeant First Class Nathan Winder, a Special Forces medic, works on an injured
girl in Iraq. (Courtesy of the Winder family)

Winder was a member of a U.S. Special Forces Quick Reaction Force when he was killed by small arms fire. His mother said he was shot in the neck.

Winder, who joined the military immediately upon graduation from high school in Blanding, was dispatched to Iraq in January.

He is the third son of Terri and Tom Winder to serve in Iraq, Terri Winder said.

“When the other two were in Iraq, Nathan had a hard time with that,” she said. “He didn’t like it that his brothers were serving in the war and he was here at home. He wanted to be over there serving his country. Then his turn came.”

Terri Winder said the family received news of her son’s death from his wife, Mechelle, and were visited by military officials Wednesday morning.

Nathan Winder called his wife almost every day, Terri Winder said. When there was no word on Tuesday, his wife, who is living in Canada with her sister, got worried. Then the military arrived to notify her of her husband’s death.

“She said his [e-mail site] was still up on her computer when they were talking to her,” Terri Winder said. “After they left, she wrote him a note, just in case. That’s kind of how you feel about something like this. It just seems so unreal.”

Born in Seoul, Korea, Winder was adopted at the age of 2 and raised in Blanding, where his parents still reside. In all, the Winders have adopted eight children, some of them with special needs.

“The fact that he was abandoned at such an early age affected him all his life,” Terri Winder said. “He was very tender, even though he had created a hard shell on the outside. And he laughed a lot.”

She says Nathan and his other two brothers who served in Iraq were “proud of the work they did,” and the Winder family stood firmly behind them and the Iraq military effort.

“All of my sons feel good about what they did in Iraq,” she said. “None of them feel the press represents the good things that happen there. [Nathan] felt like they were making a difference. He said, ‘They don’t know what we’re offering them. They’ve never tasted freedom before.’ ”

Nathan Winder is survived by his wife, his 11-year-old son by a previous marriage, Logan, of Herkimer, New York, his parents and siblings.

The family is uncertain about burial plans, his mother said. He had noted on his military papers that he wants to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery, she said, but the family would prefer to bury him in Blanding. They expect to receive more information later this week.

“We have no idea at this point how things will be,” Terri Winder said. “I know he just had the military mind-set when he wrote that and never really thought it would happen. It would be like losing him twice if we can’t bring him home.”
Nathan Winder was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Media, Iraqi Campaign Medal and Combat Infantryman’s Badge.

Army Sergeant First Class Nathan L. Winder, who was killed June 26, 2007, in Iraq, will be buried in Arlington National Cemetery, the internment location he had requested. Arrangements are pending.

A memorial service for Winder is set for 5 p.m. Friday at the North LDS Chapel, 255 E. 200 North, Blanding.

About 25 members of Winder’s family are trying to attend the funeral at Arlington Cemetery. A fund has been set up at Zions Bank in the name of Nathan Winder to help family members meet travel expenses.

13 July 2007:

Utah soldier buried with honors at Arlington National Cemetery
By Suzanne Struglinski
Coutesy of the Deseret Morning News

Family and friends of former Blanding, Utah, resident Nathan L. Winder gathered at Arlington National Cemetery today as the solider was buried in a formal military ceremony.

A riffle volley sounded as a bugle played Taps in the background on a bright and hot day in Virginia. Large bouquets of red, white and blue flowers stood behind the grave site as soldiers folded the flag that draped Winder’s coffin with precision only the military can provide.

Winder’s grandfather Cleal Bradford said Winder’s parents Tom and Terri Winder, also of Blanding, were there, as well as 14 of Winder’s siblings, his wife Mechelle, his 11-year old son Logan and other friends and family members.

Bradford said Winder had requested to be buried at Arlington should anything happen to him.

The family gathered in a private room in a building at the cemetery, where Winder’s family received his Bronze Star and Purple Heart medals before a procession of cars made their way to the grave site. Soldiers saluted as the coffin was carried to the grave, and a group of veterans stood nearby and also saluted.

As of Thursday, 402 service members have been buried at Arlington from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the cemetery’s media office.

Winder, 32, was working with a U.S. Special Forces Quick Reaction Force when he was killed by small-arms fire in Iraq on June 26.

Since the September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States, at least 43 members of the military and others with Utah ties have been killed in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Winder, adopted when he was 2 years old from Seoul, South Korea, was the third member of his family to serve in Iraq, Boyle said. Two of Winder’s brothers also served. He is one of eight children his parents adopted in addition to their 10 biological children.


  • DATE OF BIRTH: 12/26/1974
  • DATE OF DEATH: 06/26/2007



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