Ryan Patrick Baumann – Sergeant, United States Army

U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)
News Release

August 04, 2008

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

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

Sergeant Ryan P. Baumann, 24, of Great Mills, Maryland, died August 1, 2008, on Route Alaska, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

1 August 2008:

CINCINNATI, OHIO – A Tri-state native was killed Friday in Afghanistan, a family member said.

Sergeant Ryan Baumann, 24, was born in the Cincinnati area but moved at age 5 with his mother to Germany, before moving to Maryland.

He enlisted in the Army after graduating from high school in 2003, the relative said.

Baumann had already completed one tour of duty in Iraq before serving in Afghanistan.

He was engaged to be married in a ceremony planned for early next year.


The relative did not say how Baumann died or whether it was related to combat operations.

Baumann’s father lives in Jeffersonville, Indiana, the relative said.

4 August 2008:

The Pentagon said a soldier from Maryland has died in Afghanistan.

Sergeant Ryan P. Baumann of Great Mills died Friday on Route Alaska, Afghanistan. He died of injuries suffered when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

Baumann was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

Baumann is survived by his mother, Cindy Lohman, of Great Mills, Maryland; and father, Robert Baumann, of Jeffersonville, Indiana.

A memorial service will be held in Afghanistan. He will also be honored at Fort Campbell's monthly Eagle Remembrance Ceremony the second Wednesday of each month.

4 August 2008:

A Fort Campbell, Kentucky, soldier with connections to southern Indiana was killed in Afghanistan.

Sergeant Ryan Baumann, 24, survived a tour of Iraq and was in the middle of a tour in Afghanistan when he died.


“He was a hero and anything he did, he did it right,” said fiancée Lauren Smith. “If he didn't get it right the first time, he would go back and do it again, and he loved this country and he loved what he was doing and he was proud of it. And I want people to understand that.”

Smith said Baumann was a soldier who never questioned his purpose.

“He loved the people in Iraq because they really thanked him and appreciated him for what he did and he really felt he was making a difference and that really pushed him to go back to Afghanistan,” she said.

Two weeks ago, an improvised explosive device nearly took Baumann's life. He escaped with back injuries.

Then last week, it happened again.

“They were going downhill and he saw the land mine and he was telling them to stop, and you can't stop a Humvee going downhill, and he told them to veer to the left, which made him take the brunt of the explosion, and he wouldn't have had it any other way,” said Smith.

Every other soldier in the Humvee survived.

“And that just goes to show how much he loved his men and there would be no other way he would want to die except for out there fighting for this country and next to his men,” said Smith.

Baumann had one last message for Smith. When he joined the Army, he gave her a gift and told her to open it if he died.

“So I opened the present and Ryan had written me a note that says I love you so much now and forever, yours forever,” she said. “And that brings me peace because I feel that he loved me and he still loves me.”

Baumann's father lives in Jeffersonville. Baumann lived in Maryland before being stationed at Fort Campbell.

His funeral will be held in Maryland, followed by a burial at Arlington National Cemetery.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008
Courtesy of Southern Maryland Newspapers


Ryan Patrick Baumann died last week in Afghanistan while serving with the U.S Army, and was remembered Monday beyond his roles in life as a son to his family and fiancé of his high school sweetheart.

‘‘Ryan was a hero,” Lauren Smith said of the 24-year-old sergeant she met while they were students at Great Mills High School. ‘‘Ryan would not have wanted to die any other way than next to his soldiers, and for them.”

Cindy Lohman, a nurse with the Calvert County Health Department, shared a similar sentiment as she too reflected at her Great Mills home on the loss of her son.

‘‘You never expect this,” Lohman said. ‘‘He is a hero.”

Baumann died last Friday, military authorities report, when an improvised explosive device exploded near the vehicle in which he was traveling on Route Alaska in Afghanistan. Baumann was assigned to the 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell, Kentucky, specifically with the 4th Battalion of the 320th Field Artillery Regiment’s 4th Brigade.

Baumann’s family will receive visitors starting at 2 p.m. next Sunday, August 10, at the Brinsfield Funeral Home in Leonardtown, where prayers will be held at 4 p.m. that day and a funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. next Monday, August 11. He will be buried at 2 p.m. that day at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, and plans are under way to encourage residents to stand and fly flags along the route from the funeral home along Hollywood Road and north on Route 5.

Born in Ohio, Baumann lived with his mother and stepfather in Germany before they moved to St. Mary’s and he enrolled at Great Mills. A love of photography grew out of classes at the school with teacher Lori Sides.

The soldier later kept in touch with the photography teacher, sending her e-mails and stopping in for visits at school while on leave.

‘‘You just don’t believe it when you hear it,” Sides said. ‘‘My heart goes out to them,” she said of his family.

Sides had heard that Baumann grabbed the wheel of the vehicle and tried to swerve around the IED, placing the explosion on his side of the vehicle.

‘‘I could see Ryan doing that,” Sides said. ‘‘He was that type of person. He really cared about others.”

Sides said that he and his future fiancee would often hang out in the photography department, and that Baumann would spend his lunches in the darkroom working on prints.

‘‘He’s the kind of student teachers hope for. He was motivated and dedicated,” Sides said.

Justin Merriman spent two weeks in May with Baumann while on assignment for a Pittsburgh newspaper as an embedded photographer. Merriman said he got to know Baumann well during his time in Afghanistan and in communications since.

Merriman said that Baumann and his unit hit another IED about a couple of weeks ago, but he was not seriously injured.

He heard reports that Baumann was coming back from a night mission in the Khost province along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border when his Humvee hit the IED that killed him. At least two others in his unit were injured, Merriman said.

‘‘Every time we lose one of these guys it’s a loss to our country,” Merriman said.

The family was notified midday Friday, and Baumann’s body arrived the next day at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware where there was a solemn ceremony, his stepfather Gary Lohman said.

Baumann, Ryan Patrick

Birth: 1983-09-17 in Loveland, Ohio
Residence: Jeffersonville, Indiana
Death: Friday, August 01, 2008
Laid to Rest: Monday, August 11, 2008 in the Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia

Sergeant Ryan Patrick Baumann (USA) of Fort Campbell, Kentucky was killed in action on August 1, 2008 while serving his country in Afghanistan. Ryan was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Ryan was killed in action while leading the convoy on Route Alaska in Afghanistan by an improvised explosive device.

Ryan was born in Loveland Ohio on September 17, 1983. He moved to Germany when he was five where he attended American, German and International schools and excelled in both baseball and soccer. He moved to Maryland in 1996 and attended Esperanza Middle School and graduated from Great Mills High School in 2003. While in high school, Ryan continued to play and referee soccer and enjoyed cars and racing. Ryan also developed his interest in photography while in High School and even won awards from the School Board and did the photos for a walking guide to St. Mary's County. After graduation, Ryan met his fiancée, Lauren Smith, who is also a graduate of Great Mills High School. Ryan enlisted in the Army in 2004 and served a 12-month tour in Iraq prior to this year's deployment to Afghanistan. Ryan and Lauren were planning on getting married on January 10, 2009.

Ryan's awards and decorations include: Meritorious Service Medal; Army Commendation Medal; Army Achievement Medal (2 awards); National Defense Service Medal; Iraq Campaign Medal; Global War on Terrorism Service Medal; Army Service Ribbon; Overseas Ribbon; Air Assault Badge; Driver and Mechanic Badge with Driver-Wheeled Vehicles and Weapons Qualification, M4, expert. During funeral services on Monday August 11, 2008 he will be receiving the Purple Heart and Bronze Star.

Ryan is survived by his mother, Cindy and step father Gary Lohman of Great Mills, Marylan, his father, Robert Baumann of Jeffersonville, Indiana, his sister, Christina Baumann of Mesa, Arizona and his fiancée Lauren Smith of St. Mary's City, Maryland. He is also survived by his grandfathers, John Boggs of Dayton, OH and Edward Baumann of Loveland, Ohio.

Ryan was proud of the work he was doing and believed in the mission and knew they were making a difference both in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ryan paid the ultimate sacrifice and died a true hero.

Family will receive friends for Sgt. Ryan's Life Celebration on Sunday, August 10, 2008 from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. in the Brinsfield Funeral Home, 22955 Hollywood Road, Leonardtown, MD 20650. Prayers will be recited at 4:00 p.m. A funeral service will be conducted by the Rev. Msgr. Maurice O'Connell on Monday, August 11, 2008 at 10:00 a.m. in the funeral home chapel. Interment will follow in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia at 2:00 p.m. with full military honors.

Memorial contributions can be sent to the 506th Airborne Infantry Regiment Association Widows, Orphans, and wounded soldiers fund, Hoyt Bruce, Treasurer 4126 Cole Way San Diego, California 92117.

Crowds Honor Soldier's Sacrifice

Thousands Turn Out on Miles-Long Procession Route
By Mark Berman
Courtesy of the Washington Post
Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Ryan P. Baumann left the Maryland suburbs to serve his country in Iraq and Afghanistan. His journey brought him back to the region yesterday, when he was buried at Arlington National Cemetery in front of hundreds gathered to pay their respects.

Sergeant Baumann, 24, of Great Mills, Maryland, died August 1, 2008, on Route Alaska, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his vehicle encountered a makeshift bomb, the Department of Defense said.

More than 150 mourners gathered at the cemetery's Section 60 before the burial service, their cars lining Halsey Drive. They were soon joined by more than 100 family members and friends who followed Baumann's flag-cloaked wood coffin.

In Southern Maryland, residents lined the procession route from funeral services earlier in the morning in Leonardtown to the cemetery in Arlington County. Thousands turned out along Route 5 in Leonardtown to pay their respects, WJLA-TV (Channel 7) reported.

Folded flags were presented to Baumann's father and mother, after which Army Secretary Pete Geren spoke to the family.

Though Baumann was still in school when the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks occurred, “he wanted to do everything he could for his country,” his mother, Cindy Lohman said last week, and he was willing to enter a hazardous occupation. “He knew that was his job.”

Lohman said her son intended to make the Army his career and believed he was “keeping the terrorists from coming onto U.S. soil.”

Baumann, a motor transport operator, was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 320th Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), based at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. He joined the Army in May 2004 and arrived at Fort Campbell that September, Army officials said.

During his service, he earned several honors, including the Meritorious Service Medal, an Army Commendation Medal and the National Defense Service Medal.

Born in Ohio, he spent part of his childhood in Germany, where his mother was a civilian nurse for the Defense Department. In Germany, Baumann identified with the troops and their sense of commitment, his mother said.

After returning to the United States with his mother and stepfather, he lived in St. Mary's County and graduated from Great Mills High School in 2003.

It was at Great Mills that Baumann met his future fiancee, Lauren Smith. Smith told the Baltimore Sun that she and Baumann spent time together hiking and enjoying the outdoors, and that he proposed to her atop a mountain in Tennessee. They were to be married January 10, 2009.

Smith said last week that she understood that Baumann saw the roadside explosive, and veered Humvee so that he absorbed the greatest force of the blast. All who were with him survived, which is how he would have wanted it, she said.

“He loved his guys,” Smith said. “Ryan was a hero. He really believed in what he was doing.”

His father, Robert Baumann, lives in Jeffersonville, Indiana. He has described his son as “a hero . . . a loving fiance . . . and the best friend that I could ever have.”


  • DATE OF BIRTH: 09/17/1983
  • DATE OF DEATH: 08/01/2008

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