The 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq began 10 years ago this week -- on March 19, 2003 -- and although officially "over," fighting continues with discouraging persistence.
By one count, the war is directly responsible for 189,000 deaths, not including those who died from hardship caused by the fighting.
CNN has a stunning map of all casualties in the Afghanistan and Iraq wars.
In all, 4,802 Americans and allies have died in the war, according to the Iraq Coalition Casualty Count, including 93 from Washington state.
Among them are four soldiers from Kirkland:
- Army Spc. Jacob Robert Herring was killed April 28, 2004, in Mosul, Iraq, after his Stryker vehicle struck an improvised explosive device near Talafar. He was a member of the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 2nd Infantry, based at Fort Lewis. He was a graduate of Lake Washington High, a popular captain of the football team. He had been wounded before. He was 20 when he died.
- Army Pfc. Andrew Martin Ward gave his life Dec. 5, 2004, in Ramadi, when his unit was attacked by enemy forces using small arms fire. He was a member of the 44th Engineer Battalion, 2d Infantry, based in Korea. In his obituary in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, his mother, Estrella O’francia Tankersly, wrote that he was a gentle person who disdained the materialistic life and felt best in the great outdoors “where eagles soar, bear and deer roam, where the snowcapped mountains meet the morning sunrise and the sunsets reached the ocean breeze.” He attended Lindbergh High in Renton. He was 25 when he died.
- Lane Cpl. Nathan Raymond Wood, a 2003 Juanita High School graduate, was slain at 19 while taking part in the brutal battle of Fallujah on Nov. 9, 2004. Wood was shot and killed when his unit was conducting a door-to-door sweep in a Fallujah apartment building. He was in the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 1st Division. Known as adventurous, a bit mischievous and an All-American kid, he loved the outdoors.
- Lance Cpl. Shane Clanin-Swanberg was 24 when he died from indirect fire at Camp Ramadi. He had only been in Iraq 10 days and had emailed his mom the day before he died. “I will start my first mission tomorrow. Mom, I love you very much.” He was with the 3rd Battalion, 7th Marine Regiment, 1st Division, based at Twentynine Palms, Calif. He loved sports like racquetball and soccer, and golf. He was born in Bellevue, but grew up on Finn Hill and graduated from Juanita High in 2000. He was a TOW missile operator and M-60 machine gunner who once fired a round as a demonstration on Tom Arnold’s “The Best Damn Sports Show.”
For more about these young men, see timeofremembrance.org.