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Loved ones remember Fayetteville soldier killed in helicopter crash in Egypt

Officer Dallas Garza is one of five Americans killed in an overseas helicopter crash. He is remembered as a dreamer -- and a father. He left three children behind.

Posted Updated

Julian Grace
, WRAL anchor/reporter
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — A soldier from Fayetteville was one of five Americans killed in a helicopter crash in Egypt this week.

Dallas Garza, 34, and the other soldiers killed were part of peacekeeping operations. He is survived by three children.

Garza may have been born in San Antonio, Texas, but Fayetteville quickly became his second home. He graduated from 71st High School in Fayetteville, and he soon made plans to follow his parents into the military .

“Dallas was very patriotic. He was all about serving, that was his demeanor," said Vanessa Iacovone, a close friend who grew up with Garza and joined the military around the same time as him.

"He would make anybody feel special. There was a stranger in the bar, he would go have a drink with them -- that's the type of person he is and we need to remember people like that, who have the influence and inspire, who challenge us and he was somebody who wanted people to," said Garza's uncle David Ramirez.

She grew up with Garza, and the pair joined the military around the same time.

Garza started as crew chief, but he dreamed of so much more.

“He always said, 'I want to fly. I hate being the person looking out the window,'" Iacovone said. "I would tell him, 'You are not going to do it.' He said, 'Watch me. I’m going to do it.'"

He worked his way up to chief warrant officer.

Iacovone said she was stunned to learn of her friend's death.

“I found out over Facebook. It’s been a kind of a ripple effect after that. I’ve been talking to his mom," she said.


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