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Staff Sgt. Aaron T. Reese came from a family with a long military history: His grandfather served during World War II and an uncle was killed in Vietnam. Two other uncles also served in the military. So it wasn't a surprise when he joined the Army shortly after his 1990 high school graduation. "He's one of those you can't forget," said his former Latin teacher, Mike Herzog. "Always working hard, always smiling. He didn't have a bad day. He was always in a positive mood." Reese, 31, of Reynoldsburg, Ohio, died Dec. 10 after falling into the Tigris River during a patrol near Baghdad. Reese had served seven years in the Army and six in the National Guard. Survivors include his wife, a 5-year-old son and a year-old daughter. "Aaron was a loving husband, son, father and brother. He loved doing his job and serving his country," said his sister, April Engstrom. "He felt that it was his duty to serve and he loved the soldiers in his squad."
— Associated Press