Army Pfc. Howard Johnson II

Army Pfc. Howard Johnson II

Died March 23, 2003 serving during Operation Iraqi Freedom

21, of Mobile, Ala.; assigned to 507th Maintenance Company, Fort Bliss, Texas; killed in an ambush near Nasiriyah, Iraq.

Army Pfc. Howard Johnson II “was God’s gift to us and the Lord has taken him away,” said his father, the Rev. Howard Johnson, who pastors Truevine Missionary Baptist Church in Prichard, Ala. Johnson, 62, said he and his wife, Gloria, have two daughters and had waited 17 years for a son. Mrs. Johnson, her face wet with tears, said, “We had no idea war would break out and we would lose our son.” Called “Junior” around the house, Johnson worked at a grocery store during high school. He brought his friends’ shoes home to shine them when they couldn’t afford shoe polish. His father had hoped his son, who was in ROTC in high school, would attend technology college after graduation. Johnson chose to enlist in the Army instead.

Associated Press

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