Staff Sgt. Tyler E. Pickett
United States Army
KIA 08 June 2008, Iraq
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28, of Saratoga, Wyo.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade
Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (Light Infantry), Fort Drum, N.Y.; died June 8 of wounds
sustained when his unit was attacked by enemy forces using improvised explosive devices.

Tributes

This Memorial Page Established by-CW2 Ann Winkler
In Honor Of SSG Tyler E. Pickett
Honoring a Fallen Brother

Husband, Father, Son, Grandson, Brother, Uncle, Non-Commissioned Officer, Leader, Soldier,
Hero, and My Brother (in arms).  These are just a few titles held by SSG Tyler E. Pickett.  I say
titles, because there would never be enough words to describe his quirks, unique personality,
spirit, and patriotism.  He was a great young man.  If you met him, you would immediately be
charmed by his sense of humor and could not help but to like him.  Nothing makes me
prouder than to speak about Tyler.   

SSG Pickett was a true Soldier.  He was proud of serving in the United States Army.  He was a
rising star, a natural leader, always ready, always willing, always giving, and full of Strength,
courage, and dedication to our country.  Everyone that knew SSG Pickett was for the better.  
He had an incredible impact on the lives of everyone he met, and touched more lives than any
of us will ever know.

I have three distinct memories of SSG Pickett.  We had heard about each other for years
through our family, and saw each other grow and excel in the military through photographs
and newspaper clippings.  My first true memory of him was when we met in Iraq.  Tyler waited
two hours in the Iraqi summer heat for me to return to my place of duty.  I knew exactly what
kind of Soldier he was within 20 minutes of talking to him.  He was truly dedicated to his
Soldiers and genuinely cared about all Soldiers.  We spoke about his military patrols.  It was
obvious that he cared about me and my Soldiers as he spoke of training those replacing his
unit.  He wanted to ensure they were capable of the very best, in order to do their job, and in
return protect the base where I was located and my Soldiers.  He had a laid back attitude, a
great sense of humor, and a smile know one can forget.  That was the first and last time I ever
saw Tyler.  

Second was when I learned of his death.  I can only imagine what his family felt, because I felt
like a dagger had just struck my heart and the wind knocked out of me.  I felt like I had just lost
a dear friend.  Over the next month, I felt guilty for having not known him better and taken
more time.  But the week of his funeral proceedings showed me that I did know him.  I knew
him better than I realized and that I did lose someone close to me; although not related, he
was my brother.

My third memory was the week of his funeral proceedings.  The Soldier who escorted him
home; The hundreds of Soldiers, civilians and children that lined the streets; The flags held by
people, hung over the streets, and draped across his casket; His fellow Servicemen; His
friends and family; The pictures and stories I heard that week.  But mostly, the day I laid my
hand on his casket, knowing that would be the closest I would ever come to hugging him
again; Honoring him with a salute ; and the pounding in my heart as the rifles were fired
giving him the ultimate military honor.  

That week I learned that I knew Tyler.  My impressions of him were exactly right.  He was a
true Soldier and leader.  On 8 June 2008, he told his Soldiers to run and did all he could to
prevent the suicide bomber from driving onto their small base and from taking their lives.  He
sacrificed himself to save every other Soldier on that tragic day.  What was even more
heartbreaking was to learn that Tyler should have been home on R&R leave, but remained in
Iraq to ensure that ongoing military judicial procedures were completed and his input was
properly included.  It was just another story that confirmed the type of military leader and
Soldier SSG Picket was.  He gave of himself that day, and I know he would do it again to save
his Soldiers’ lives.  

He gave all he could to everyone he met.  He gave his family and friends his time, love,
consideration, passion, joy, and humor.  He gave his Soldier his dedication, wisdom, strength,
knowledge, and comradeship.  He even gave his time and love to the children in the
community by visiting their school.  I was fortunate to meet Tyler’s best friend, went to his
favorite bar, and learned of Tyler’s favorite drink – a Budweiser.  I heard stories about his
younger days as a Soldier that even today make his friends smile, laugh and cry.  So, it was
only fitting that the empty glass on the Missing Man POW/MIA table at the reception following
SSG Pickett’s service was replaced by an ice cold bottle of Budweiser.

I would like to take a moment of remembrance for all fallen Soldiers, to those that served
before me, that I am honored to follow… Thank you.  To those I serve(d) with, it is my honor
to know you and call you friend, brother and sister… Thank you.  To those who continue to
serve and that will serve after me… Thank you.  To those of you that lost family members to
military service, I especially thank you for your precious gift.

I hope everyone will join me in asking God to bless all who serve, past, present and future,
and this great country.  I am sure Tyler had the love for this country, his brothers and sisters,
his friends and family that I do.  I am truly saddened by his loss, honored to have known him,
and humbled by his duty, loyalty, and selfless service to our country.  

In Honor of SSG Tyler E. Pickett
5 May 1980 – 8 June 2008

From Wyoming to New York and all across this world, you are missed and remain in our
hearts forever.  Rest In Peace, My Brother I will never forget     
you.                                                         
CW2 Ann M. Winkler
United States Army

May 19, 2010
TSgt Penny Brooks
I had the honor and pleasure to treat several of SSG Pickett's team mates following the blast
that took his life.  It was a wonderful, heart wrenching experience.  Tyler, I never knew you
but feel like I have met you through the tears of your surviving team mates.  They loved you
so much.  I hope you know that!  RIP