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    Fallen 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper Honored with Barracks Dedication

    Fallen 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper honored with barracks dedication

    Photo By Sgt. Justin Stafford | U.S. Army Sgt. Marshall H. Edgerton, Headquarters and Headquarter Battalion, 82nd...... read more read more

    FORT GORDON, GA, UNITED STATES

    12.11.2019

    Story by Spc. Justin Stafford 

    49th Public Affairs Detachment   

    “Even before my dad passed away, I was like, man, that's what I want to do,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Marshall H. Edgerton Jr. “I want to join the Army and I want to jump out of an airplane.”

    He repeatedly watched a VHS tape when he was six years old of his father jumping from a training tower on Sicily Drop Zone on Fort Bragg, said Edgerton Jr., now a 23-year-old Paratrooper assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 82nd Airborne Division.

    His father, then-Spc. Marshall L. Edgerton, was killed in action on Dec. 11, 2003 on Combat Outpost Champion Main in Ar Ramadi, Iraq by a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device while pulling guard duty.

    After deploying with Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment from July 2002 to January 2003, he volunteered to deploy in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom with Alpha Company, 82nd Signal Battalion, 82nd Abn. Div. in August of 2003 before separating from the Army and joining his family in Tennessee.

    After unsuccessfully having a conference room in the G6 office of the 82nd Abn. Div. Headquarters named after his father due to naming convention issues, Edgerton Jr. received an email from Fort Gordon officials two weeks ago. They were wanting to name a signal corps student barracks facility after his father on the anniversary of his death and wanted the Edgerton family to attend.

    “This came out of nowhere because a year and a half ago I was trying to do that,” said Edgerton Jr. “So, it's pretty awesome. Almost in a bigger way.”

    Edgerton Jr. said he was astounded by the email due to the fact that he wasn't involved in the process at all and that it simply happened and someone in the Army thought they should do this to remember his father.

    However, it was not just someone in the Army. His father's name was submitted to a board and vetted before the facility could be named after him. His father's sacrifice and character were honored at a dedication ceremony on Fort Gordon, Dec. 11, 2019.

    “I had the pleasure of serving with him in the best division in the Army, the 82nd Abn. Div.,” said Brig. Gen. Christoper Eubank, the commandant of the U.S. Army Cyber School. “I knew him more by reputation than personally because I didn't need to know him personally to know what kind of man he was.”

    Eubank said that Edgerton gave everything for the sake of his teammates and that as Soldiers come through the Edgerton Barracks they will read his story and see the impact they can have as a signal Soldier. He said Edgerton demonstrated what leaders want their Soldiers to become: a selfless leader.

    According to Col. John T. Baston, the commander of the 15th Signal Brigade, the barracks facility will be integral in the Advanced Individual Training of new Soldiers.

    “Standing behind me is the largest company and barracks facility on Fort Gordon, which consists of 300 barracks rooms capable of housing 900 new Soldiers attending Advanced Individual Training and completing their transition from civilian life to professional Signal Soldiers,” Baston said during the ceremony. 

    “In addition to housing up to 900 Soldiers, this building consists of two company operation facilities, currently occupied by Charlie and Echo Companies of the 551st Signal Battalion, responsible for the health, welfare and morale of Soldiers preparing to become Signal Soldiers.”

    Baston said over the course of a year, nearly 1,500 Soldiers will walk the halls and complete their transition into a Signal Soldier.

    Spc. Edgerton was promoted to the rank of sergeant posthumously and received a Bronze Star and Purple Heart. His awards and decorations also include the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Basic Parachutist Badge and the Signal Association’s Gold Order of Mercury.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 12.11.2019
    Date Posted: 12.11.2019 20:08
    Story ID: 355367
    Location: FORT GORDON, GA, US 

    Web Views: 517
    Downloads: 0

    PUBLIC DOMAIN