Bradley Kritzer – An American Hero

Pfc. Bradley Kritzer

Today* would have been his 27th birthday. An all-American boy from small-town America. Bradley G. Kritzer, like many from the small boroughs of central Pennsylvania’s Clearfield county loved the outdoors and someday hoped to work there with an organization like the Pennsylvania Game Commission. Brad is a lot like many of my cousins with hunting and fishing a favorite pastime.  It is said that he grew up with a rifle in hand, hunting turkey and deer with his father and going fishing every chance he got. Brad is a distant cousin whose life I was drawn closer to by the tragedy of his death.

Pfc. Kritzer’s life, and that of another soldier, was taken in an explosion when their Humvee hit a remotely controlled improvised explosive device in Baghdad, Iraq on May 5, 2004. He was just 19 years old and had arrived in Iraq 53 days before.

While his friends and family mourn Brad’s death in his small hometown of Irvona, PA (2009 population 628) little do they know that way out here on the Pacific coast family also mourn his loss. The ultimate Patriot who paid the ultimate price.

Brad Kritzer is among the nearly 4500 U.S. soldiers whose lives were cut short fighting in the Iraq War.  Of the 23 coalition nations, whose troops served in Iraq, 93% of those killed were Americans. Ask yourself, with the recent withdrawal of our troops there, what good did the loss of so many of our young men and women accomplish? Time will only tell.

 I must tell you that he was the best son and soldier that a mom and dad could want. He is truly an American hero. ~~ Sharon Kritzer, Brad’s mother

Leave a message on Pfc. Bradley Kritzer’s Fallen Heroes Memorial page.

*Originally posted on 11 Januray 2012

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Veteran’s Day – All Gave Some, Others Gave All

3 thoughts on “Bradley Kritzer – An American Hero

  1. You asked, “What good did the loss of so many of our young men and women accomplish?” It sent a message loud and clear to the tin pot dictators, terrorists and thugs of the world like Saddam Hussein that we will not tolerate them. They were sent a message that when they violate a cease fire, as Hussein did and the UN Security Council confirmed, they will pay dearly. If you think losing 4500 soldiers is bad, think of what we did to the other guys.

    1. Just like you I’m all patriotic and gung-ho. I served in Vietnam which, I also thought at the time, was a great, valiant effort. Boy, did we kill a lot of the enemy there as well.

      Those dictators, terrorists and thugs you mention — despite that long-delayed message — remain. Just a few different names and faces that carry on just as before, while the Iraqi people suffer untold miseries.

      I’m sure knowing “what we did to the other guys” makes all those families who lost loved ones in Iraq feel so much the better for their sacrifice, knowing “boy did we show them!”

      As I originally wrote, in answer to the question: time will only tell.

  2. Hi. It is very easy at this point to sit back and judge (one way or the other) whether the price paid by our young men and women, and their families was worth their sacrifice. I for one believe that history will make this call. As we did learn in Vietnam, enemy body count does not necessarily mean much. But were it not for these American sacrifices, only God knows what we may have faced in our homeland if the battle had not been taken to their soil. While my heart aches for each American family who faces this terrible, painful sacrifice, I am thankful that we do have young men and women such as Pfc. Kritzer who are willing to be the “American Fighting Man”. It is my belief that many of the fallen would have no regrets over their sacifice.
    This is not a “typical” war. We are facing a very determined and evil enemy. They proved on Sept. 11, 2001 that we are their enemy. Let us not forget those +2000 lost souls from that nightmarish day.
    I pray for our soldiers , sailors, airmen, and marines and their families. That is the single most powerful, meaningful, and effective action we can take for them here at home. Let them be wrapped in God’s armor. We live in a land that has been blessed beyond any nation ever known. But many times our blood and fortunes were spent to defend those blessings.
    May they rest in peace.

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