Sunday, March 25, 2007

Lance C. Springer II dies of injuries from I.E.D.

BENBROOK, Texas — Spc. Lance C. Springer II joined the Army thinking he would use his training as a mechanic.

But the Army had a different mission for him as a combat medic.

"He actually liked that better. He would be going with the guys out on the front lines," said Springer's father, Lance Springer. "That was his ministry."

The younger Springer was killed in Baghdad on Friday when an improvised explosive device detonated near his unit during a patrol, the military said Sunday.

The 23-year-old from Benbrook was assigned to the 1st Squadron, 40th Cavalry Regiment, 4th Airborne Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division at Fort Richardson, Alaska.

A Boy Scout, member of the Church of God and saxophone player in the marching band, Springer always dreamed of being a soldier, his father said. He signed up for the military about 2 1/2 years ago, after graduating from Western Hills High School and attending Tarrant County College for his mechanic's training.

"He knew when he joined that there was a good chance he was going to Iraq or Afghanistan," his father said.

After being deployed to Iraq five months ago, Springer was assigned to patrols and missions that led to the capture of insurgents. He also told his family about having to fire his weapon several times during combat, his father said.

But his son also carried candy and coloring books to hand out to children in Iraq, he added.

"He believed in what he was doing and he felt like we needed to be over there, until the Iraqi army got better," his father said.

When he was back home, Springer loved to pass the time playing video games and going off road riding in his Jeep.

Aside from his father, Springer is survived by a brother, sister and mother.

From the Chronicle