Operation Iraqi Freedom, Fallen Heroes, Iraq War 03/19/03

Paul T Nakamura

Santa Fe Springs, California

June 19, 2003

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
21 Army Spc 437th Medical Company, based in Colorado Springs, Colorado
Al Iskandariyah, Iraq.  Nakamura was part of an ambulance crew transporting an injured soldier when the vehicle was hit by an RPG.
AP News

Paul T. Nakamura was a lifeguard who had taught swimming since he was 17 and belonged to the high school water polo team. Family members recalled him as a rascal and a risk-taker. Nakamura, based in Colorado Springs, Colo., was killed June 19 when the ambulance he was in was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade in Iraq.

From The Charlotte Observer:

His father had concerns, but Nakamura was intent on joining the Army Reserve. His motivation: patriotism.

"One day he said, `Mom, Dad, I'm so proud I was born in the United States,' " said his mother, Yoko, of Santa Fe Springs, Calif.

Nakamura, 21, was killed June 19 when the ambulance he was in was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade in Iraq. He was stationed with the 437th Medical Company, based in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Nakamura was a lifeguard who had taught swimming since he was 17 and belonged to the high school water polo team, said his sister, Pearl Nakamura. Family members recalled him as a rascal and a risk-taker.

"You would tell him not to do something, and he would do it anyway," his sister said.

On Father's Day, the family spoke with him for the last time.

"The first thing he told me was that he had showered and had steak for dinner -- we know he was lying," said his father, Paul. "He didn't want us to worry."

 

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