Monday, July 09, 2007

Tony Vinnedge remembered

HAMILTON — — A group of friends and family gathered Sunday night to share memories of Cpl. Anthony Vinnedge, who died Thursday in Iraq. They described the 24-year-old soldier, who went by the name Tony, as outgoing and always on the go.

After serving four years in the Army, Vinnedge had returned and joined the Ohio National Guard while he worked at Hueston Woods State Park, they said.

He had volunteered to go to Iraq and was to arrive home in Okeana in Butler County on Wednesday to spend two weeks with his family, his half brother Michael Vinnedge said.

"It's a big loss, a very big loss," said Michael, 25. "He was my brother, a really good-hearted guy."

Vinnedge loved working on his 1988 Mustang convertible, which he won throwing a football during a high school game.

"We always would go driving around in his car to make sure that thing was top-notch," his brother recalled.

Vinnedge was serving as a missile launcher, though not much was known of his assignment in Iraq, nor of the circumstances surrounding his death.

The 2001 Talawanda High School graduate spent a short time at Miami University's Oxford campus, where he was last studying psychology before leaving for the military.

"I was surprised when he told me he was going into the Army, but he always excelled in everything he did," said Paula Faust, Michael Vinnedge's mother. "(He was) just an all-in-all nice kid," she said. "He never met a stranger."

Funeral services are pending, but family members said Webb Noonan Funeral Home in Hamilton will handle arrangements. Vinnedge will be buried in Greenwood Cemetery in Hamilton.

From the Dayton Daily News

Related Link:
Anthony Vinnedge reported killed in Iraq