Local News

Fallen soldier's legacy lives among troops in Afghanistan

Posted October 17, 2011 3:11 p.m. EDT
Updated October 18, 2011 6:02 a.m. EDT

— Members of the 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade paused from their mission in Afghanistan on Monday to honor a comrade who was killed by enemy fire last week.

Staff Sgt. Robert Cowdrey, 39, a flight medic, was working a rescue mission with his crew in the Kunar province last Thursday when they came under fire. He was injured and later died.

Cowdrey was a member of Company C, 3rd Battalion and was one of the original members of the Medevac company. He was on his fourth deployment and was supposed to call Forward Operating Base Fenty home for the next year as the 82nd CAB served a year-long mission.

"His service to the army during time of war speaks volumes about him as an individual," Lt. Col. Jeffrey Cheeks said during a memorial service held for Cowdrey.

"I can truly say that, in all my years of Medevac, I've never met someone more committed to the company, its mission and the people who depend on us," Maj. Graham Bundy said.

Cowdrey was a blogger, loved dogs and was completed devoted to his family and fellow soldiers, according to his comrades.

"Through his tough leadership style, he earned the respect of those he worked with. That is how he built such strong friendships," Sgt. First Class Lottie Weidle said.

Cowdrey, who will be buried in his hometown of La Junta, Colo.,  is survived by his wife, Kimberly, and three sons in Sanford. His oldest son, Justin, is following in his footsteps as a Medevac soldier.