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

Nathan J Vacho

Janesville, Wisconsin

May 5, 2006

Age Military Rank Unit/Location
29 Army Sgt

Army Reserve’s 489th Civil Affairs Battalion

Knoxville, Tennessee

 Killed in Baghdad, Iraq, when an improvised explosive device detonated near their HMMWV during combat operations.

Vacho, 29, was born in Chippewa Falls, Wis., and was a resident of Janesville, Wis. He began his Army career March 24, 1998, when he enlisted into the Army Reserve as a military firefighter. He was a trained Army health care specialist assigned to the 489th Civil Affairs Battalion, Knoxville, Tenn.

His military training and experience in the civil air patrol during high school prepared him for his first unit assignment with the 336th Engineer Platoon, Duluth, Minn. 

Vacho transitioned into the Army medical career field in 2002. He attended the Practical Nurse Course at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, and successfully graduated in spring of 2003. Later in 2005, Vacho completed the Army Emergency Technician Refresher Course and was assigned to the 330th Medical Brigade, Madison, Wis.

Vacho was reassigned to USACAPOC (A), where he mobilized in his health care specialist position and deployed with his assigned unit, the 489th CA Bn. 

His awards include the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with “M” Device and the Army Service Ribbon.

He is survived by his daughters, Emma Grace and Bayli Ellen, of Janesville and Colfax, Wis., and his parents, Carol and John of Ladysmith, Wis.

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