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