|Staff Sgt. Daniel A. Newsome
United States Army
KIA 27 June 2007, Iraq
Memorial Page Established by-
In loving memory of my cousin Daniel Newsome who I will
dearly miss very much. Wish we had more time together. You will always
be remembered through the family and myself always and forever.
|Soldier's death hits home as Chicopee mourns
By Daniel J. Muse, Globe Correspondent | June 30, 2007
Daniel A. Newsome loved skateboards, fast cars, and his family, who are reeling from the news that the
Army staff sergeant died while serving his second tour of duty in Iraq, his uncle said yesterday.
Concord Fire Chief Kenneth Willette, who is also the godfather of the 27-year-old Chicopee native,
said Newsome enjoyed serving his country and had married his high school sweetheart, Karen. They
had a 1-year-old son, he said.
"We feel this is a terrible, heart-wrenching event, but there are so many families that are experiencing
this," Willette said in a telephone interview. "We just hope that this makes everyone realize this is
really going on, that soldiers are really dying. It's asking a lot of the soldiers and their families."
Newsome died in Baghdad from injuries sustained June 27 when an improvised explosive device
detonated near his vehicle during combat operations, according to the Pentagon.
Newsome had been in Iraq since last October and was assigned to the First Battalion, Eighth Cavalry
Regiment, Second Brigade Combat Team, First Cavalry Division, based at Fort Hood, Texas, the Army
His family in Western Massachusetts -- including his wife, his parents, and his stepfather -- declined to
be interviewed yesterday.
Willette said that Newsome's enlistment was up in February 2008 and that he was considering leaving
"He was looking forward to settling down with his family and maybe buying a house," Willette said. "He
was looking to go to technical school for auto mechanics."
His uncle said Newsome had served as a peacekeeper in Kosovo and served a year in Iraq before his
current deployment. He was stationed in Hawaii between 2004 and 2005. He was slated to return from
Iraq in January 2008.
"When he was a teenager, he loved skateboards and fast cars," his uncle said. "And even as an adult,
he loved working on his car. He had a pretty souped-up Honda. He was always adding something to it
to make it look better or go faster."
Newsome was last home about a month ago, and the family made sure they celebrated his son's
birthday, even though it had not yet arrived.
"It was just a wonderful time," Willette said. "The memory we'll have of his son smashing birthday cake
over Danny and Karen's faces is great. And it makes it harder."
Newsome was a 1998 graduate of Chicopee Comprehensive High School and was the third native of
Chicopee to die in Iraq or Afghanistan, said Mayor Michael Bissonnette.
The others are Marine Captain John Maloney, who died in Iraq in 2005, and Army Specialist Christopher
Wilson, who was killed in Afghanistan earlier this year.
"We've had way too much experience with this," said Bissonnette, who pointed out that the athletic
field at Chicopee High School was named in Maloney's honor this year. "Everyone is in a state of
shock. A loss like this hits home."
According to the Army, Newsome's decorations and awards include the Purple Heart and the Bronze
John Ellement of the Globe staff contributed to this report.