507th Maintenance Company
The 507th Maintenance Company was a United States Army unit which was ambushed during the Battle of Nasiriyah in the rapid advance towards Baghdad during 2003 invasion of Iraq on 23 March 2003. The most well known member of the unit was Private First Class Jessica Lynch whose rescue from an Iraqi hospital received world wide media coverage. Sergeant Donald Walters and Private First Class Patrick Miller were both awarded the Silver Star for valor. Sergeant Matthew Rose was awarded the Bronze Star Medal with "V" Device. Many other members of the unit were decorated as well, receiving the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and/or Prisoner of War Medal.
On 16 July 2005, the 507th Maintenance Company was redesignated as Battery E, 5th Battalion, 52d Air Defense Artillery Regiment. In 2006, A monument to the 507th Maintenance Company was placed within the battalion's area on Fort Bliss, Texas. In January 2007, the unit's designation was changed to Battery F.
The 507th Maintenance Company provides maintenance support to 5th Battalion, 52nd Air Defense Artillery, a Patriot missile unit based at Fort Bliss, Texas. Previously, it was assigned to 2d Battalion, 7th Air Defense Artillery, 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade, another Patriot missile unit at Fort Bliss which played a major support role in the first Gulf war. During its Iraq deployment, in 2003, 507 was attached to 31st ADA.
The Battle of Nasiriyah
A trail vehicle convoy element of this unit was ambushed during the rapid advance towards Baghdad during Operation Iraqi Freedom on 23 March 2003. The 507th was last in a march column of over 600 vehicles from the 3rd Infantry Division. This element which included the heavier, slower vehicles of the 507th, made a wrong turn into Nasiriyah, a major crossing point over the Euphrates River northwest of Basra. A U.S. Army investigation concluded that this wrong turn was the result of a navigational error compounded by a lack of rest, limited communications and human error.
Killed in action
The following soldiers of the 507th Maintenance Company were killed in action:
|Jamaal R. Addison||Specialist||22||Roswell, Georgia|
|Robert J. Dowdy||First Sergeant||38||Cleveland, Ohio||First Sergeant of the 507th Maintenance Company.|
|Ruben Estrella-Soto||Private||18||El Paso, Texas|
|Howard Johnson II||Private First Class||21||Mobile, Alabama||The first casualty from Alabama during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Posthumously awarded the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart.|
|James M. Kiehl||Specialist||22||Comfort, Texas|
|Johnny Villareal Mata||Chief Warrant Officer||35||Pecos, Texas|
|Lori Piestewa||Private First Class||23||Tuba City, Arizona||Captured alive, but died in captivity. The first Native American woman in history to die in combat while serving with the U.S. military. Posthumously awarded a Purple Heart and a Prisoner of War Medal.|
|Brandon Sloan||Private||19||Bedford Heights, Ohio|
|Donald Walters||Sergeant||33||Kansas City, Missouri||Captured alive, but later summarily executed. Posthumously awarded the Purple Heart and the Silver Star for gallantry with marked distinction.|
Two soldiers from the 3rd Forward Support Battalion of the 3rd Infantry Division, Specialist Edward J. Anguiano, 24, of Brownsville, Texas, and Sergeant George Edward Buggs, 31, of Barnwell, South Carolina, were also killed in action with the 507th Maintenance Company after falling back in the column to assist the 507th with vehicle recovery.
Prisoners of war
|Edgar Hernandez||Specialist||21||Mission, Texas||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
|Joseph Hudson||Specialist||23||Alamogordo, New Mexico||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
|Shoshana Johnson||Specialist||30||El Paso, Texas||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
|Jessica Lynch||Private First Class||19||Palestine, West Virginia||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
|Patrick Miller||Private First Class||23||Wichita, Kansas||Awarded the Silver Star, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
|James Riley||Sergeant||31||Pennsauken, New Jersey||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and Prisoner of War Medal.|
Wounded in action
The following soldiers of the 507th Maintenance Company were wounded in action:
|Curtis Campbell||Sergeant||Brooklyn, New York||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.|
|Francis Carista||Corporal||Awarded the Purple Heart.|
|James Grubb||Specialist||Manchester, Kentucky||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.|
|Tarik Jackson||Staff Sergeant||Miami, Florida||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart.|
|Damien Luten||Corporal||Awarded the Purple Heart.|
The following soldiers of the 507th Maintenance Company were noted to have escaped capture by media accounts:
|Adam Elliott||Private First Class||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal.|
|Troy Kent King||Captain||Company Commander of the 507th Maintenance Company.|
|Matthew Rose||Sergeant||Salem, Oregon||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal with "V" Device.|
|Dale Nace III||Private First Class||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal. Captain King's driver.|
|Nicholas Peterson||Specialist||Dallas, Texas||Awarded the Bronze Star Medal.|
- "Honoring those who have come before". Laven Publishing/US Army. Retrieved 1 June 2006.
- "Attack on the 507th Maintenance Company, 23 March 2003, An Nasiriyah, Iraq" (PDF). Retrieved 28 October 2008.
- The Oregonian, Left Behind, 13 April 2003.
- Texas Senate Resolution 50, recognizing 13 members of the 507th Maintenance Company