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Candlelight vigil held for fallen Rice soldier

Another local serviceman killed in action in Iraq is honored by community
A candlelight vigil for a local soldier lost in Iraq last week was held in Rice Friday night.
Only two days before the anniversary of the War on Terror it was announced by the Department of Defense that another Ennis-area soldier, Cpl. William “Will” David O’Brien of Rice, died March 15 in Baghdad, Iraq.
O’Brien, 19, died of wounds suffered when struck by small arms enemy fire during combat operations, according to a Department of Defense press release. O’Brien is the son of Thomas O’Brien of Mabank and Dawn O’Brien of Rice. He was the third son in the family to join the Army, following older brother, John, and half-brother, Daniel.
John O’Brien told the Corsicana Daily Sun last week that his brother, a junior PGA player, was committed to responsibilities to his country but was looking forward to completing his tour, coming home and playing golf again.
“He was just doing his duty,” his brother said. “He died a warrior’s death.”
The city of Rice is mourning the loss of O’Brien.
Since news of his death was announced, flags have been flown at half-mast around town and in windows of businesses.
A collection of red, white and blue flower arrangements also stood in front of O’Brien’s mother’s downtown Rice restaurant, Mom’s Meal Vault, for some time a lunchtime favorite with Ennisites.
A candlelight vigil attended by hundreds of Rice, Alma and Ennis residents was held in the small town south of Ennis Friday night to pay their respects for the fallen soldier and show their support for the O’Brien family.
Joining the Army at age 17, O’Brien was assigned to the First Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment, Fourth Brigade Combat Team, First Infrantry Division, Fort Riley, Kansas, and had been deployed in Iraq for a year. His death occurred two weeks prior to his 20th birthday.
Funeral services are pending with Corley Funeral Home, Corsicana.

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Posted by on Mar 24 2008. Filed under News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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