Lance Corporal Caleb J. Powers

Photo Gallery: Caleb Powers

Lance Corporal Powers was killed in the province of Al Anbar, Iraq. He was standing guard at a military base when a sniper's bullet cut through him, his dreams, and those who loved and looked up to him. Within a split second, Caleb went from a friend, relative, and classmate to a hero who would never be able to live out his life long dreams of being a wheat farmer in northern Douglas County, Washington. His family would never again see the endless smile of the person they loved, and he in turn, would never see the family which loved him so much.

As a child, Caleb grew up in a troubled life. He was a person whose only wish in life was to be loved and have someone show him the meaning of life. He spent the majority of his time at Childhelp USA, where he was shown the true meaning behind life. During his time at Childhelp, he made many friends to whom he looked up to. These people included those who worked at Childhelp as well as those involved in the United States Marines Corps. This impact gave Caleb the strength he needed to look life in the eye and step out into the world, not knowing what to expect. As a teenager, Caleb came to Mansfield to live with his Aunt and Uncle. It is here where he made a fresh start in life. He made many new friends who in turn helped him to be what he was until his last days. Perhaps some of his most fond memories included those in shop class, where he and others learned the tricks and trade of welding in agriculture. While his heart was in Mansfield and farming, their wasn't a day that went by where he didn't talk about wanting to be a United States Marine. Throughout high school, he constantly talked about the Marines, their way of life, and the devotion they have towards our country.

As a senior in high school, Caleb took advantage of his last opportunity to get to know his friends and classmates from the past six years. He accompanied them on a class trip to Winthrop, Washington where they spent four days enjoying the fact that they were about to graduate from high school. Upon graduation, it was made clear what Caleb's intentions of life were. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. only a week after graduation. After his completion of basic training, Caleb took part in numerous operations over seas including stationing in Japan, Afghanistan, and Iraq. He returned many times to visit those he loved in Mansfield as well as the children at Childhelp USA.

It was Caleb's second tour of duty to Iraq that would be his last. With only two weeks until his service was over, his life was cut short. Never again would he see his friends and family, nor would they every see him. The days leading up to his service started out as a cloudy, grim day. However, over the town of Mansfield gleamed a ray of light. This light stretched no further than the north and south ends of town. While surviving a tough and painful life, there seems to be no doubt that this was a thank you for the memories provided to him by his family and his friends.

A memorial service was held for Lance Corporal Caleb J. Powers on August 27, 2004 at Mansfield High School. Here, over four hundred people paid their last respect to a fallen hero of our country. Present were four of Caleb's closest Marine friends, a close friend and producer, as well as a former member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; all of which Caleb had touched in some way or another.

Lance Corporal Caleb J. Powers was born on October 31, 1982 in Tillamook, Oregon. He was laid to rest on October 14, 2004 at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. A memorial marker will be placed at the Mansfield Cemetery.