Mother Who Lost Son In Iraq To Honor Every Solider Killed

Discussion in 'Middle East - General' started by -Cp, Jul 30, 2005.

  1. -Cp

    -Cp Senior Member

    Sep 23, 2004
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    Indian Harbour Beach,FL (AHN)-Many tributes exist for soldiers across the U.S. including bumperstickers, signs, ribbons, T-shirts and numerous other mementos which are used to remind the nation of the sacrifice of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    Nina and Preston Schrage lost their son Dustin in May of 2004 during a night time swim across the Euphraties River in Iraq, as soldiers went to do recon work on an island that gun fire as well as rocket propelled grenades had been coming from the previous 2-days.

    Schrage was trained as an amphibian scout in Okinawa, Japan and had been trained mainly in ocean swimming with fins and diving gear. This operation consisted of wearing full field gear and weapons across a river that appeared on the surface to be calm but under the surface was another story.

    Dustin along with a fellow marine towed a line across the river but neither made it to shore after being sucked into a whirlpool that pulled the soldiers under water as they passed the half-way point of the swim. A massive search began for the troops for four days until their bodies were discovered just 6 feet from shore where they had been attempting to cross. The weight of the equipment had kept the soldiers down far enough in the river that rescuers passed over them numerous times without even knowing.

    Nina Schrage has decided to take on the cause of remembering not only Dustin but every soldier killed in Operation: Iraqi Freedom as well as the war in Afghanistan.

    "My son voluntarily joined the Marines because he thought it would give him a giant boost to becoming what he originally wanted to become which was a SWAT team member in law enforcement," says Schrage.

    "He was 17-years old when he enlisted and 20-years old when he died but he had become a different person in the last year of his life. He still maintained his sarcastic sense of humor and he could drive anyone to their very last nerve, but that was his way of showing he loved and cared about you. These kids fighting over there who are dying need to be remembered for their sacrifice, they were kids just like my son."

    Schrage is now dedicating her time to raising funds for the SOS Fund which is an organization that raises funds to create statues and busts of soldiers heads to be put in every single town where a soldier who has been killed in the recent wars can have a memorial in their hometown.

    "How incredible is this?" Schrage says. "Now every soldier can be remembered forever in their town for their sacrifice for this nation. I am now making this it a major part of my life for this to happen for these fallen heroes."

    Schrage is aiming to raise funds by selling rubber camaouflage wrist bands that say "support our troops" on them, with all of the profits going to the SOS Fund to build the statues. Dustin's is expected to be finished by the end of 2005 with an unveiling at a local baseball stadium.

    The S.O.S. Foundation can be found on the web at, Schrage can be contacted directly at , for information on obtaining the wrist bands.

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