Skip to comments.Fallen Soldier's Heartfelt Last Words To His Family (Marine)
Posted on 11/11/2007 10:42:02 AM PST by stylin19a
Before he left to train for a second tour of duty in Iraq, Marine Cpl. Joseph E. Stevenson III of Downers Grove wrote a letter to his family, in case he did not return.
Stevenson, 20, died in his sleep on Oct. 28 at Camp Pendleton, Calif.
Stevenson was buried last week with full military honors. His parents, Barbara Ann and Joseph E. Stevenson Jr., have given the media permission to reprint their son's letter over the Veterans Day weekend.
Letter is kinda long, so go to the link
(Excerpt) Read more at dailyherald.com ...
Bring a box of tissue
What a loss for this country. Prayers.
Cpl Stevenson, we salute you, thank you for your service, rest in peace young man.
What an unbelievably touching and heartfelt letter.
Does anyone have any further information about what happened to this young man? I have never heard of a 20 year old just dieing in his sleep.
Ignorant headline editor. Stevenson was a Marine not a soldier.
stylin’ says bring tissue
Cpl. Joseph E. Stevenson III of Downers Grove always dreamed of becoming a Marine. On Oct. 28, the 20-year-old died as a Marine.
"He did everything he could to get there (the Marines)," said his older sister, Lindsey Stevenson, at his funeral Nov. 5. "And we're so proud of him because he did it." St. Joseph School fifth-graders Alec Lamour, 10, left, Angelica Naber, 10, and Charlie Ulch, 11, stand at attention as the funeral procession for Marine Cpl. Joseph E. Stevenson passes by their school. (Kate Szrom/Staff photographer) Joseph Stevenson, pictured in his 2005 high school yearbook, always wanted to be a Marine, his sister recalled. Courtesy of Downers Grove North High School
Stevenson was stationed in Camp Pendleton, Calif., where he was undergoing reconnaissance training. The cause of death is pending results of an autopsy, officials said.
About 200 people attended the funeral service at St. Joseph Parish in Downers Grove, including his parents, Joseph E. Stevenson Jr. and Barbara Ann Stamper-Stevenson, who is a math teacher at Lisle Senior High School.
Stevenson had entered active duty in August 2005, serving one tour of duty in Iraq.
Lindsey said that when her brother was a child, he feared something bad would happen to him. When he wasn't completely reassured by his mother's advice to run to the neighbors' home if someone broke into the house, he was told by her that she would die before letting anything bad happen to him.
"One day it went from us protecting Joe to Joe protecting us," Lindsey said.
His family said he lived by the Marine Corps motto, "Semper fidelis," which is Latin for "always faithful."
Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn attended the funeral, at which Stevenson was given full military honors, and said the Marine embodied the Latin phrase for his faithfulness to his country, the Marine Corps, his family and God.
"We have to bury a hero today," Quinn said.
Stevenson attended school at Belle Aire Elementary, Herrick Middle School and Downers Grove North High School.
According to a statement from the Stevenson family, he was a coach for three years for the Orchard Brook swim team and a member of the Downers Grove swim team for three years. He enjoyed mountain biking, kayaking, boogie boarding, running and fishing, and did a "mean" Forrest Gump imitation.
Stevenson is survived by his parents and sister and by his grandmothers, Dorothy L. Stevenson and Mafalda Stamper of Kankakee.
He was preceded in death by his grandfathers, Joseph Stevenson and John W. Stamper.
Memorial contributions may be directed to the Fisher House Foundation, 1401 Rockville Pike, Suite 600, Rockville, MD 20852; or Operation Support Our Troops Illinois, 1807 S. Washington St., Suite 110, No. 359, Naperville, IL 60565. Contact Eva McKendrick at email@example.com or 630-416-5103.
Rest in peace, sir! Semper Fi!
good job...thanks for filling in the blanks
So tall and skinny, could it have been Marfan’s Syndrome?
Often the only noticeable symptom is when the aorta explodes, causing instant death.
Sorry - didn’t mean to repeat.
We should be a grateful nation.
Beautiful young man. What a great loss to our country. That family did a wonderful job raising him.
He died in his sleep at Camp Pendleton? How? Heart attack? It’s just not fair.
ping. This letter ought to run in every newspaper in America.
Yes,he was.But we still get the point...which is that,thankfully,there are many kids who have served,and are serving,bravely and selflessly in the Army,Navy,Air Force *and* Marines and who could easily have written the very same letter as did Corporal Stevenson.
On the Veterans' Day (and on every other day) I think we all understand this.
I think Ben Stein said recently that 90% of the worlds backbone comes form US servicemen ans women. God rest this young heros soul.
Without men and women such as this young Marine, our country would never have been. I am so grateful for them.
May the lord see fit to take my life as he has this young warrior, in defense of this country.
Semper Fi, Marine, and may God welcome you into your well-deserved rest.
DAMN men and women leaving a comfortable life in this the freest, SAFEST and most comfortabLe life On earth to face guns ammo rpg’s and ied’s for US...I.E.
people THEY DONT’ EVEN KNOW...!!!!
DOES IT GET ANY BETTER THAN THAT?
GOD BLESS THEM EVERY ONE!!!
a GRATEFUL citizen...
Semper Fi and rest in peace, Corporal.
He may not have made it to this battle, but he had already served one tour in Iraq.
BTW, I have to note how proud I am that this young man was from right here in the Land of Lincoln.