SSG DARREL D. KASSON February 5, 1964 – March 4, 2007 Operation Iraqi Freedom Darrel Dwayne Kasson was born on February 5, 1964 in Tucson, AZ, where he grew up and lived most of his life. Moving to Florence, AZ in 1993, he worked as a Department of Corrections Officer at the Florence Prison and served as a deacon and youth leader in the Florence Baptist Church. SSG Kasson and his wife Lori were married for almost 25 years and have 3 children, Lisa, Jeremy, and Dale. He enlisted in the Arizona Army National Guard on 24 February 1987 and was trained as a 13B Cannon Crewmember. He was a member of B Battery, 2-180th Field Artillery in Tucson for many years but also served in A Battery, 2-180th FA located in Phoenix. SSG Kasson was transferred to the 259th Engineer SECFOR shortly before the unit was mobilized on 1 August 2006. After training at Camp Shelby, MS, the unit deployed to Iraq on 26 October 2006. SSG Darrel D. Kasson was killed in action on 4 March 2007 while serving as the lead vehicle commander for a 27 vehicle convoy logistic patrol in the vicinity of Bayji, Iraq. While heading back to LSA Anaconda, SSG Kasson’s vehicle was hit by an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). SSG Kasson’s awards include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, Army Achievement Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal (4th Awd), Armed Forces Reserve Medal (2nd Awd)(“M” Device), Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal (2nd Awd), Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, NCO Professional Development Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, Arizona Exceptionally Long Service Medal, Arizona Long Service Medal (3rd Awd), Arizona Service Ribbon (3rd Awd), Arizona Reenlistment Ribbon, Arizona National Guard Southwest Asia Service Support Ribbon, Combat Action Badge, Driver Badge – Wheeled Vehicle, and Rifle M16 Expert Qualification Badge.