|From The Statesman Journal statesmanjournal.com
Monmouth teen one of two soldiers killed in Iraq Friday
Statesman Journal • August 29, 2009
The Oregon National Guard identified the soldiers killed in Iraq Friday as Pfc. Taylor D. Marks of Monmouth and Sgt. Earl D. Werner of the Amboy, Wash., area.
Marks and Werner were killed in Rashid, Iraq when their convoy was attacked and struck by armor-piercing projectile” the Oregon Military Department said. They were serving with the 41st Special Troops Battalion, 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team.
Marks, 19, was born in Salem and raised in Monmouth. He was a graduate of Central High School and joined the Oregon Army National Guard, attending training with a friend.
His plans were to join the military and continue his education. He was contracted to go to the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio in California, but made the decision to defer his schooling in order to deploy with the 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team.
An Oregon Military Department spokeswoman said Saturday that Marks was promoted posthumously to the rank of Specialist.
He is survived by his mother Michelle Mack, stepfather Don Mack and sister Courtney, 15, all of Monmouth, and stepsister Alex, 19, of Keizer; and father Morey Marks of Salem.
Werner, 38, was on his third deployment with the Oregon National Guard. His first was as part of the 2nd Battalion, 162 Infantry in 2004. He later deployed with the 234th Engineer Company in 2007 before transferring to the 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team.
During his time with the ONG, Werner was awarded the Bronze Star, two Army Commendation Medals and the Combat Action Badge.
He is survived by his wife Casey and son Charles, 19 of the Amboy, Wash., area.
|From The Columbian columbian.com
Amboy soldier killed in Iraq
Sgt. Earl D. Werner was on his third deployment
Tuesday, September 1 | 1:13 p.m.
Oregon Army National Guard Sgt. Earl D. Werner was killed Friday in Iraq.
An Amboy man on his third deployment in Iraq with the Oregon Army National Guard was one of two soldiers killed Friday by insurgent forces.
Sgt. Earl D. Werner, 38, died of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his vehicle with an explosively formed penetrator, an improvised device powerful enough to send lethal shards of metal through even heavily armored military vehicles.
The attack in Rashid, Iraq, also claimed the life of Taylor D. Marks, 19, of Monmouth, Ore., who was posthumously promoted to the rank of specialist. Both soldiers were assigned to the 41st Special Troops Battalion, 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team of the Oregon Army National Guard, which had been in Iraq since June.
Werner is survived by his wife of two years, Casey, and son, Justin, 19. They live near Amboy just inside Cowlitz County.
"This was the second tour of his marriage, so they didn't have a heck of a lot of time together," said Eunice Royer of Vancouver, Casey Werner's grandmother. "It's just so sad for us to see that Casey has to go through this."
"The military was one thing that was very important to his life," said Duane Royer of Vancouver, Werner's father-in-law. "He had such a great caring for the other people he worked with in the National Guard. He felt very responsible for them. That was a driving force of him wanting to do it again. He wanted to take care of people."
When not on active duty, Werner worked as a truck driver. He'd driven long-haul trucks, heavy equipment and gravel trucks.
"He was a very talented young man who knew how to do his job," said Duane Royer. He said that when a landslide blocked a road near Amboy, Werner rounded up equipment to clear the road and deliver gravel for his neighbors.
Werner raised horses, loved his pets and was an avid fisherman. "He actually went fishing in Baghdad," Royer said. "It wasn't any fish he'd want to keep, but he did it."
Werner's first deployment was as part of the 2nd Battalion, 162 Infantry in 2004. Later he deployed with the 234th Engineer Company in 2007 before transferring to the 41st Infantry Brigade Combat Team for deployment.
During his time with the Oregon National Guard, Werner was awarded the Bronze Star, two Army Commendation Medals and the Combat Action Badge.
Details about possible memorial arrangements are pending.