Memorial

43rd name added to Grateful Nation Montana Fallen Soldier Memorial

2013-07-02T20:45:00Z 2013-10-26T21:53:11Z 43rd name added to Grateful Nation Montana Fallen Soldier Memorial missoulian.com

Another name was added to the state’s Grateful Nation Montana Fallen Soldier Memorial on Tuesday, bringing to 43 the number of Montana service members killed fighting the nation’s wars in the Middle East.

With a small crowd gathered two days before the nation’s 237th birthday, Army Sgt. 1st Class Darren Linde’s name was inscribed in a granite headstone, assuming its permanent location at the memorial on the University of Montana campus.

“You hope and pray every time you put a name in, it will be the last,” said David Bell, who helped found Grateful Nation Montana. “We hope Darren Linde will be the last name we have.”

Linde, of Sidney, was conducting route clearance in Lashkar Gah City, located in the Helmand province of Afghanistan, when he was killed by an improvised explosive device on Dec. 3, 2012.

His father is expected to pass through Missoula next week.

“There’s no way to replace these fine young men,” said Vietnam veteran and state Sen. Cliff Larsen, who attended Tuesday’s brief engraving. “I remember some people I knew in the service that didn’t come back from Vietnam.”

There was no ceremony Tuesday to mark the occasion, and no official speeches. Veterans Sam Redfern and Ziven MacWilliams turned out in support, along with Barbara Denman, a Missoula parent whose own son was wounded by an IED in the war.

Students on campus continued about their day. The bells at Main Hall chimed at noon, right on schedule. Bob Jordan’s sandblaster hissed as it carved Linde’s name in stone.

Jordan, of Garden City Monument Services, has engraved all 43 stones, complete with name, dates of birth and death, hometown and military rank.

“It’s one of those deals you’d like not to do any of them,” he said.

This monument, tucked below a shady grove on campus, has come to serve as Montana’s official memorial dedicated to those who served and died in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Larsen, a Missoula Democrat, carried a bill in the Senate giving the memorial its official status. Rep. Champ Edmunds, a Missoula Republican, did the same in the House. The resulting legislation passed unanimously and was signed into law by Gov. Steve Bullock this spring.

“We can wear these colors and enjoy the freedoms we do, but they gave everything,” Larsen said. “These are two sort of undeclared wars, and we’re looking at the consequences right now.”

Linde takes his place alongside 42 other Montana men. They include Marine Cpl. Phillip Baucus of Wolf Creek, who died in the Anbar province of Iraq in 2006, and Pfc. Kristofor Stonesifer, a UM student who died in Pakistan in 2001, becoming Montana’s first casualty of the war.

Joe Warren, director of Montana’s Survivor Outreach Services, has helped many of the families personally after their loss.

“We work with all the families that lost a loved one from Montana,” said Warren, a veteran of the Army. “Sometimes we call them to see how they’re doing, especially in the early time of their grief.”

Reporter Martin Kidston can be reached at 523-5260, or at martin.kidston@missoulian.com.

Copyright 2015 missoulian.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

No Comments Posted.

Missoulian Civil Dialogue Policy

Civil Dialogue Policy for Commenting on Missoulian.com

We provide this community forum for readers to exchange ideas and opinions on the news of the day. Passionate views, pointed criticism and critical thinking are welcome. Comments can only be submitted by registered users. By posting comments on our site, you are agreeing to the following terms:

Commentary and photos submitted to the Missoulian (Missoulian.com) may be published or distributed in print, electronically or other forms. Opinions expressed in Missoulian.com's comments reflect the opinions of the author, and are not necessarily the opinions of the Missoulian or its parent company. See the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Our guidelines prohibit the solicitation of products or services, the impersonation of another site user, threatening or harassing postings and the use of vulgar, abusive, obscene or sexually oriented language, defamatory or illegal material. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability or other classification. It's fine to criticize ideas, but ad hominem attacks on other site users are prohibited. Users who violate those standards may lose their privileges on missoulian.com.

You may not post copyrighted material from another publication. (Link to it instead, using a headline or very brief excerpt.)

No short policy such as this can spell out all possible instances of material or behavior that we might deem to be a violation of our publishing standards, and we reserve the right to remove any material posted to the site.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick

Montana Conservation Corps

Montana Conservation Corps crew leaders build a log border for a trail they're realigning in Sawmill Gulch …

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian digital director Emily Foster presents the latest news you need to know about tod…

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian reporter Kate Haake presents the latest news you need to know about today's headl…

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian reporter Martin Kidston presents the latest news you need to know about today's h…

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian digital director Emily Foster presents the latest news you need to know about tod…

Kole Swartz Service

Kole Swartz Service

Josh Hinrichs, friend of the Swartz family, pays tribute to Kole Swartz during a service for…

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian digital director Emily Foster presents the latest news you need to know about tod…

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

The 4:06 – trending topics and hot headlines

Missoulian digital director Emily Foster presents the latest news you need to know about tod…

Mountain Water Trial Day 1

Mountain Water Trial Day 1

Lawyers for the city of Missoula and Mountain Water Co., make opening statements in the emin…

Les Schwab

Deals & Offers

Search our events calendar