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Remembering the fallen

A tribute to troops killed in Iraq and Afghanistan

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Daniel L. Sesker

Killed on April 6, 2006

OGDEN, Iowa (AP) -- An Iowa National Guardsman who was killed in Iraq was remembered Tuesday for his contagious laughter.

Sgt. Daniel Sesker, 22, of Ogden was killed April 6 when a bomb exploded near his Humvee, military officials said. He was manning a gun aboard the vehicle when insurgents detonated the bomb near Bayji.

"If you were having a bad day, he was the one to put a smile on your face,'' Spc. Shane Sinn, a high school classmate of Sesker's, told hundreds of people who packed the flower-filled gym at Ogden High School for the service.

Sgt. David Bollenbaugh, who also went to high school with Sesker, joked about his friend's love of billiards and Tater Tots.

Bollenbaugh said Sesker was a brave soldier and always led as a gunner.

"He wouldn't take anything but the lead job," Bollenbaugh said. "He didn't want to be anywhere else.''

Guard officials said Sesker had recently learned that his fiancee, Angelique Garey, was pregnant.

Sinn said he and Sesker were looking forward to raising children together.

"I will tell our kids about the hero you are and the hero who gave 150 percent for our country,'' Sinn said.

A video slide show displayed images of Sesker's military service while music played. Burial followed at Linwood Park Cemetery in Boone, Iowa.

Sesker, born in Boone in 1983, graduated from Ogden High in 2001. He was deployed to Kosovo in 2003. In July 2005, he volunteered to join the Le Mars-based Troop C, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry, which performs reconnaissance and surveillance. The unit arrived in Iraq late last year, and Sesker was scheduled to return late this year or early in 2007.

Between his tours of duty, he worked as a counselor at Woodward Academy and a part-time police officer in Gowrie, Iowa.

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