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

Roy Lin Tisdale

Roy Lin Tisdale

Houston, Texas

June 28, 2012

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
42 Army LTC

Fort Bragg, North Carolina

 Some of his awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal and Army Commendation Meda.

Roy Lin Tisdale

ROY TISDALE OBITUARY
April 9, 1970 June 28, 2012

LTC Roy Lin Tisdale, USA, died June 28, 2012 at Fort Bragg, NC. A funeral service is scheduled for 2:00 P.M., Thursday, July 5, 2012 at Central Baptist Church in College Station. The family will receive friends from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., Wednesday, July 4th at Memorial Funeral Chapel in College Station. Interment will follow at the Aggie Field of Honor, with full military honors.

LTC Tisdale was born April 9, 1970 in Houston, Texas, the son of Roy Lee and Linda (Mallynn) Tisdale. He grew up in Alvin, Texas and was a 1989 graduate of Alvin High School. While attending Texas A&M, he was a member of the Corps of Cadets, Company D2, National Rudder Ranger Challenge, National Champions and a member of the Class of '92. 

LTC Tisdale was commissioned as a 2LT in the United States Army in May of 1993. He has served at Fort Benning, GA, Fort Polk, LA, Fort Bragg, NC, and served several deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan.

His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Joint Military Unit Award, National Defense Service Medal, Meritorious Unit Citation, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Air Assault, Combat Infantryman Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge and Senior Parachutist Badge.

LTC Tisdale was preceded in death by his father, Roy Lee Tisdale in 1991.

Survivors include his wife, Kim (Corbett) Tisdale; children, Megan and Roy Lane Tisdale, mother, Linda Tisdale; brother, SFC Charles D. Tisdale, USA; father-in-law, Jim Corbett; brothers-in-law, Steven Corbett, Jason Corbett and their families; and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends.
From The Fayetteville Observer fayobserver.com 02/10/14:

Nine-soldier crime ring linked to death of Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale
Posted: Monday, February 10, 2014 7:04 am | Updated: 10:31 am, Mon Feb 10, 2014.
By Drew Brooks Staff writer
A nine-soldier crime ring that began in Afghanistan has been tied to the 2012 shooting death of a well-respected Fort Bragg officer, according to federal court documents.
Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale was shot and killed during a unit safety briefing on June 28, 2012.
At the time, officials were quiet on what could have driven his killer, Spc. Ricky Elder, to shoot Tisdale and then turn the gun on himself.
The pair had deployed together with the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade's Special Troops Battalion. And Elder was facing a court-martial for stealing a $1,700 tool kit. But there was no clear connection.
But documents related to two criminal cases that ended last year paint a more complete picture of the events leading up to Tisdale's death on a hot Fort Bragg afternoon.
"It is my opinion, that had these larcenies not occurred, Lt. Col. Tisdale would still be with us today."
Capt. Aaron E. Adams, now stationed at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center at Hohenfels, Germany, wrote those words in a letter included in the case file for Chief Warrant Officer 3 Kurt Allen Bennett.
Bennett is a helicopter pilot who in 2012 served as brigade tactical operations officer and then led the brigade's enabler security team.
He's also been convicted of stealing government property and was sentenced last year to three years in a federal prison, although he isn't due to report to prison until June 30, 2014.
According to court documents, Bennett and another soldier, Sgt. 1st Class Robert Alan Walker, conspired together to steal military equipment that included vehicle motors, tools and electronics while deployed from 2010 to 2011.
The pair, working with several other soldiers, would hide the equipment in shipping containers and send it back to the United States.
Once back at Fort Bragg, the property was distributed among the nine-soldier crime ring. According to an indictment, tens of thousands of dollars in equipment was stolen, including an $11,500 ATV and a nearly $9,000 cargo trailer.
One of those soldiers, according to the documents, was Elder.
Elder was a troubled soldier from the small town of Hutchinson, Kan., according to officials.
As a juvenile, he was charged with burglary, battery and possession of marijuana during separate incidents.
As a soldier, he was charged with assault causing injury in 2007, drunken driving and leaving the scene of an accident in 2009 and simple assault in 2011.
In Facebook posts, some dating just an hour before Tisdale's death, Elder said he had been diagnosed with dementia and expressed bitterness in connection to his pending court-martial.
"So one week before I was supposed to get out I was charged with these damn tools," one post read. "So instead of a ($)20,000 severance I get to loose all the benefits and everything I've worked so hard for."
Writing about the impact of the thefts, another former 525th officer, Maj. Dallen R. Arny, again linked the crimes to Tisdale's death.
"The effects of (Chief Warrant Officer 3) Bennett's behavior on the command were catastrophic," Arny wrote. "One of his co-conspirators murdered Lt. Col. Tisdale. Lt. Col. Tisdale would be alive today if Ricky Elder didn't receive a toolbox from (Chief Warrants Officer 3) Bennett."
According to court documents, the thefts were discovered in August 2011 following an inventory of equipment.
At the time, one set of night vision goggles was unaccounted for, according to Adams, who served as commander for the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade's Headquarters and Headquarters Company.
The theft of the equipment shut down the unit for about 30 days, according to Adams. During that time, his soldiers stayed late nights accounting for equipment.
The investigation revealed that one soldier was trying to sell some of the equipment in the civilian market, Adams said. And eventually, nine soldiers were linked to the ring that was formed in Afghanistan.
Those soldiers were removed from their positions and escorted to and from law enforcement for multiple questionings.
The fallout from the investigations included a loss of trust and an increase in discipline issues, a drop in morale and a loss in unit pride, Adams wrote.
"Soldiers began to distance themselves from everyone and everything that was a part of the unit," he said. "It became a struggle to keep it all together and keep the machine rolling along."
Arny said Bennett's prosecution took years, giving the appearance that "officers can commit crimes and get away with it."
"That appearance destroyed good order and discipline within the unit, and in one case an outstanding officer was killed," he said.
According to Chief Warrant Officer 2 James Verschueren, another former member of the 525th, the thefts resulted in hours of lost productivity that "adversely impacted" the company's ability to train for an expected deployment to Kosovo and to prepare two subordinate units for combat operations in Afghanistan.
Ten months after the thefts were first discovered, the stress and frustration came to a head on June 28, 2012.
Then, Elder pulled a gun during the otherwise routine safety briefing. He shot Tisdale and another soldier, then shot himself.
"I am not blaming (Chief Warrant Officer 3) Bennett for the death of Lt. Col. Tisdale; however, I do believe that the larcenies were the cause that lead to the shooting of Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale," Adams wrote. "It is my opinion, that had these larcenies not occured, Lt. Col. Tisdale would still be with us today."
Verschueren said Tisdale was a former deputy commander of the brigade who was "widely respected for his experience and leadership."
Nearly 200 soldiers witnessed his killing, he said, causing untold psychological trauma.
"The damage and trauma caused by that incident on the Special Troops Battalion, the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, Lt. Col. Tisdale's family, and those who served with Lt. Col. Tisdale may never fully heal," Verschueren said. "There were nearly 200 soldiers present at the safety brief, and many of them were eyewitnesses to a murder-suicide that never should have happened, but for (Chief Warrant Officer 3) Bennett's actions which set off a chain of events leading up to that tragic day."
Bennett pleaded guilty to his crimes in June 2013 and was sentenced in November, according to online court records.
His conspirator, Walker, accepted a plea agreement in November 2012 and was sentenced in September 2013 to one and one-half years in prison.
Walker reported to federal prison in December.
Tisdale, meanwhile, has been repeatedly honored by his family, friends and former colleagues since his death in 2012.
At least two runs have been held in his honor, with participants on Fort Bragg, in Texas and spread across the world.
At his funeral in College Station, Texas, Tisdale was remembered as someone who never shirked responsibility, a true Texan who put his all into what he did.
Tisdale thrived in the military and became a well-liked, highly respected commander.
He served four different combat deployments. But the father and husband was felled on the home front, a fact that caused further anguish to his family.
After his death, Tisdale's mother, Linda, said she could only scream.
"I was in shock," she said from a diner in Texas shortly after Tisdale's funeral. "When they're deployed, you never know what's going to happen. But he was in the U.S. He was home.
"I keep saying, 'I'm going to wake up from this bad dream. Nothing's changed yet.'"
A week after his death, Tisdale would be honored by hundreds of strangers.
Hundreds of students at Texas A&M, his alma mater, gathered outside the church where Tisdale's funeral was held to block of a possible protest by Westboro Baptist Church.
Many of those same students traveled to the Aggie Field of Honor on the far side of College Station to again stand in support with the family.
The procession to the graveyard was marked by dozens of students lining grassy shoulders, waving flags. A group of construction workers stopped working on a new post office to line up and pay their respects, their helmets covering their hearts.
"Folks, war is not always overseas," Rusty Davis, a Tisdale family friend, said during the funeral. "Sometimes, it's here."

From The Huffington Post AP hoffingtonpost.com 06/30/12:

Roy Tisdale Killed By Soldier In Fort Bragg Shooting
Posted: 06/30/2012 1:04 pm EDT Updated: 06/30/2012 1:08 pm EDT
FORT BRAGG, N.C. -- Military officials have released the name of a battlefield surveillance unit leader who was killed by a fellow soldier during a safety briefing at Fort Bragg.

Authorities say 42-year-old Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale of Alvin, Texas, died immediately after being shot Thursday, and the shooter then turned the gun on himself.

Tisdale took command of the 525th Brigade Special Troops Battalion when it was activated in January. He was commissioned as an infantry officer after graduating in 1993 from Texas A&M University.

Special agents from the Army Criminal Investigation Command are investigating the shooting.

The shooter is in custody, but his name and condition have not been released.

A third soldier, 22-year-old Spc. Michael E. Latham of Vacaville, Calif., also was wounded and has been released from the hospital.

From The Houston Chronicle chron.com 06/30/12:

Slain soldier was looking forward to retirement in Texas
By Carol Christian | June 30, 2012 | Updated: June 30, 2012 9:44pm
A highly decorated veteran shot and killed Thursday at Fort Bragg in North Carolina was an Alvin native looking forward to retiring in the Lone Star State.

Lt. Col. Roy Lin Tisdale, 42, was a leader from a young age, showing livestock and competing in the rodeo as an Alvin High School student. He was commissioned in the U.S. Army in 1993, the same day he graduated from Texas A&M University, his mother Linda Tisdale said.

That same year, he married his wife, Kim Tisdale, who also grew up in Alvin. The couple has two children, 15-year-old Megan and 12-year-old Lane.

A gunman facing a court-martial shot Tisdale, commander of the 525th Brigade Special Troops Battalion, as he gathered his unit for a safety briefing Thursday before the July 4th holiday.

An Army official has said the suspect, who has not been identified, was accused of stealing a tool box worth nearly $2,000 and could have been dishonorably discharged if found guilty. He was in critical condition after shooting himself.

The circumstances surrounding Tisdale's death are especially tragic, said Miles Dollinger, his agriculture teacher for four years at Alvin High School in the late 1980s.

"To survive hostile territories and then to come home and have one of your own (do that) - that's what wants to rip your heart out," Dollinger said.

He remembered his former student as an accomplished leader.

"He was on my leadership team and my livestock judging team," Dollinger said. "If there was something going on, Roy was there. There was nothing he couldn't achieve, nothing he wouldn't do for anybody."

A career soldier, Tisdale's awards and decorations included the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal and Army Commendation Medal, the Army said.

He served two full tours in Iraq and two in Afghanistan, and made various short visits to both theaters, his mother said. He last returned in October from Afghanistan after a nine-month deployment, she said.

"He only had a few more years to retirement," Linda Tisdale said by phone Saturday from her home near Bryan-College Station. "He'd never been stationed in Texas, and he wanted to get back to being around livestock."

In addition to his nearly four years at Fort Bragg, Tisdale had served at Fort Polk in Louisiana, Fort Benning in Georgia and Fort Leavenworth in Kansas.

"I never thought he would come back to the states and something like this would happen here," she said.

Tisdale was remembered as a family man who was focused on his children and making sure they received good educations.

In addition to his mother, wife and children, Tisdale is survived by a younger brother, Sgt. 1st Class Charles David Tisdale, of Bryan.

Services are scheduled for 2 p.m. Thursday at Central Baptist Church in College Station. Burial will be in the Field of Honor at the Texas A&M University Cemetery.

This report contains material from The Associated Press.

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