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Remembering Roslyn Schulte, Johnny “Mike” Spann and Jonathan Porto

Remembering Roslyn Schulte, Johnny “Mike” Spann and Jonathan Porto

And all the others on Memorial Day

I’m in Israel now.

A fitting place to be on Memorial Day because the lives and freedoms of the two nations are so intertwined.

Without the sacrifices of those who fought and died to protect our freedom, there would be no freedom for our friends and allies.

We have remembered Air Force Lt. Roslyn Schulte each Memorial Day, the day in 2009 she was buried by her family in Ladue, Missouri.

In researching this post before I left, I came upon this entry at This Day … In Jewish History

This Day, May 20, In Jewish History

2009 (26th of Iyar, 5769): Twenty-one year old USAF First Lieutenant Roslyn L. Schulte was killed today when a vehicle in which she was riding in was struck by an explosive device near Kabul, Afghanistan. An intelligence officer, she was the first female USAF Academy graduate to have died in combat. She was killed in the same attack that took the life of Lt. Col. Pine.

The U.S. Air Force Academy Class of 2006 also recently dedicated its Giving Campaign in memory of Roslyn and classmate James Steel (who died in an F-16 crash in Afghanistan on April 3, 2013):

As the first female cadet killed in combat, Schulte was remembered at a recent flag placing ceremony:

Volunteers placed flags on grave sites at the Air Force Academy Cemetery Friday ahead of Memorial Day.

1,476 people are buried in the cemetery, including some of the Air Force’s most famous airmen.

Lt. Gen. Hubert Harmon, the Academy’s first Superintendent, was the first to be interred on Sept. 28, 1958.

Other notable individuals buried there include former Air Force Chiefs of Staff Generals Carl Spaatz and Curtis LeMay; triple ace and former Commandant of Cadets Brig. Gen. Robin Olds; Medal of Honor recipient Master Sgt. William Crawford, U.S. Army; and 1st Lt. Roslyn Schulte, Academy Class of 2006, who was the first woman graduate to be killed in combat.

I had not seen this 2011 St. Louis Dispatch article before, Goodfellow renames building in honor of the late 1st Lt. Roslyn Schulte:

A building at Goodfellow Air Force Base in San Angelo, Texas, has been renamed in honor of the late 1st Lt. Roslyn Schulte of Ladue.

The building, which houses the 315th and 316th Training Squadrons, was renamed Schulte Hall on Friday, in honor of the woman who was killed on May 20, 2009 by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. Schulte, 25, was the first female U.S. Air Force Academy graduate to be killed in action, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.

Schulte received intelligence training at Goodfellow. According to an article in an Air Force newsletter, more than 200 people attended the renaming dedication, including Schulte’s parents, Robert and Suzie Schulte, and her brother, Todd Schulte.

I also found this memory on Pinterest:

Roslyn Schulte Pinterest

On this day we honor all those who fell in combat, including Johnny “Mike” Spann, the CIA special operations officer who was the first American killed in Afghanistan in the aftermath of 9/11. His daughter remembered him in this interview a little over a year ago:

And Cpl Jonathan Daniel Porto. In December 2014 his wife wrote about how hard the years have been:

That was the last time I saw you, soul present in body, on this earth. The last time I felt the warmth radiating from your skin, the last time I felt the tingle of your kiss, the last time I felt safe and whole.

I look to my right and there you sit. Your body in a small wooden box. I look to the Heavens and there you live. Your soul, watching down on me reminding me that I will be safe and whole once more.


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FrankNatoli | May 25, 2015 at 8:34 am

“Struck by an explosive device”. Anybody remember when one of the biggest cause célèbre was “mines”? How terrible it was for Western military to stock and potentially use “mines”? Seem to recall Sir Paul and his now ex being involved in the push to ban “mines”. And then…Middle Eastern forces started using “improvised explosive devices” [IEDs] a/k/a “mines” to kill our men and women in uniform and…poof…nobody gives a damn, no more Sir Paul and his ex. You see what kind of conscience the Left has? None whatsoever.

Richard Aubrey | May 25, 2015 at 9:03 am

Five million mines scattered broadcast in Afghanistan by the Sovs….. Crickets.
Illegal as hell under international law…. Crickets.

    Vascaino in reply to Richard Aubrey. | May 25, 2015 at 11:15 am

    Does anyone remember the Iraq/Iranian war when the Iranians used children to clear minefields by rolling themselves over the mines after being given some token promissing some dried fruit in their “heaven”?
    And the world’s response – the chirping of crickets.

LukeHandCool | May 25, 2015 at 2:40 pm

There are two kinds of sacrifice in this world:

One is the kind of sacrifice of these three fallen heroes.

The other is the sacrifice of pushing yourself to go trekking and mountain climbing in Indonesia after you’ve sprained your ankle on a NY City sidewalk and your lawsuit for $5 million is yet to be settled.

When one walks the National Cemeteries, the enormity of sacrifice to freedom hits one like a brick. Putting a face to an individual sacrifice brings home the pain so many feel. Thanks, Prof.