Saturday, April 21, 2007

Shane Becker laid to rest

ANCHORAGE, Alaska -- Last month, Staff Sgt. Shane Becker was back from Iraq at Fort Richardson, witnessing the birth of his daughter.

He returned to the war zone a week ago Tuesday Becker was shot and killed in Baghdad.

Today, his body was back at Fort Richardson.

Those who knew him describe Becker, 35, as one tough solider and platoon leader who never asked his men to do what he wasn't willing to do first.

Specialist Ernest Porter served with Becker.

"He was the senior scout, so he was the lead guy, pretty much, so he would always take his guys out and put them where they needed to be. He basically choreographed missions," Porter said.

Porter is able to attend today's funeral at the Post Chapel because he too was injured in Iraq.

A bomb blew off his heel and left shrapnel in his leg.

So far, 174 Fort Richardson soldiers have been injured in Iraq and 31 have died.

"I'd say it's been tough on everybody taking all the casualties. I mean, we're all a big family even though we don't know each other," Porter said

Becker leaves behind a wife and two young daughters.

The eulogy described him as hard as nails. That toughness now left up to his family and friends in coping with his loss.

"It's real difficult actually. I don't know, it's just something you don't want to hear. I don't know how else to explain it - it's just hard to hear something like this," said Pfc. Kevin Beavers.

Becker was born in Colorado. He served in the Army in the ‘90s and then worked in the Texas oil fields.

In 2001, Becker answered the call and re-enlisted, anticipating being deployed to combat.

From KTUU 2

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