First Lt. Christopher S. Goeke, 23, an infantry officer from Minnesota, was commissioned in the U.S. Army May 31, 2008, after graduating from the United States Military Academy at West Point, N.Y.
Goeke completed Airborne School, Infantry Officer Basic Course and the Ranger Course at Fort Benning, Ga. He was assigned to Fort Bragg, where he joined Company C, 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment on May 18, 2009. In September 2009, Goeke deployed with the unit to Afghanistan.
“Chris Goeke was one of the finest officers I have had the honor of leading in 20 years of service. His bravery in combat, commitment to his paratroopers, out-of-the-box problem solving and love for his wife and his profession were unparalleled,” said Lt. Col. David Oclander, battalion commander of 1-508 PIR.
“Chris was respected by his men as a leader and a person. Chris left a legacy with the battalion and on the lives of the men he led. Chris died a hero.”
Goeke’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Global War on Terror Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge, Parachute Badge and Ranger Tab.
Goeke died Tuesday, July 13, 2010, while repelling an insurgent attack on an Afghan police compound in Kandahar City.
Goeke is survived by his wife Kelsey, his father Randal Goeke and his mother Pamela Shultz.