|Birth: ||Jan. 23, 1976|
|Death: ||Apr. 27, 2011|
My dear friend's step-son, Nathan, was killed while on active duty in Afghanistan. He died trying to save others. I attended his services.
"Building named for Nathan Nylander.
by Airman 1st Class Josh Slavin
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
8/2/2013 - DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. -- The 25th Operational Weather Squadron building was dedicated in a ceremony here to Capt. Nathan Nylander August 1. Nylander was killed while deployed to Afghanistan in 2011.
The 25th OWS building is now called the Nylander Building after the unveiling of the memorial sign at the building dedication ceremony.
During the ceremony Lt. Gen. Robin Rand, 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) commander, gave a speech to the more than 300 Airmen in attendance.
"I will never take for granted the sacrifices that Nate Nylander made on my behalf and on our country's behalf," Rand said.
Following the general's speech, the 25th OWS presented the Nylander family with flowers and a framed collection of photos.
Nylander was deployed to Afghanistan as an advisor in support of Operation Enduring Freedom when an Afghan Air Force officer suddenly opened fire on American service members and civilians at Kabul International Aiport. He was shot while attempting to subdue the Afghan officer and help other military members escape.
He was awarded the Silver Star, the nation's third-highest award for combat valor, here on Sept. 24, 2011. Nylander's three children and his widow accepted the Silver Star on his behalf."
Capt. Nathan J. Nylander, 35, of Hockley, Texas, is my good friend's step-son.
He died April 27, 2011 at the Kabul International Airport, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from gunfire while he was in a meeting at the airport. He was assigned to the 25th Operational Weather Squadron, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, AZ.
Services were held in Arizona, with another memorial service in Fairbury Illinois later.
The following is the obituary for the Illinois memorial service partially taken from The Bloomington, Illinois Daily Pantagraph, and which was written by his family, here in Illinois:
"FAIRBURY — Capt. Nathan J. Nylander, 35, Tucson, Ariz., formerly of Fairbury, was killed April 27, 2011, at the airport in Kabul, Afghanistan.
A memorial service will be at 2 p.m. Sunday June 19, 2011, at Trinity Lutheran Church, Fairbury, with the Rev. Tom Krieger officiating. Full military rites will be accorded by Fairbury VFW Post 9789 and John Joda American Legion Post 54 at Graceland Cemetery, Fairbury. The Patriot Gaurd also will participate.
Nathan was born Jan. 23, 1976, in Fairbury, Illinois.
Surviving is his wife and 3 children, all at home; his father, his mother, two sisters, one brother,and a paternal grandmother.
Nathan was a graduate of Waller High School in Texas. He left in July 1994 for basic military training at Lakeland Air Force Base, Texas, and began his career as an airman in the U.S. Air Force. Upon completion of training, he went to technical school at Goodfellow AFB in Texas to become a radio and satellite data analyst. After technical school, he went to Patrick AFB, Fla.
In January 1998, Senior Airman Nylander cross-trained into the weather career field. He then spent time at Keesler AFB, Miss. Later he transferred to Luke AFB, Ariz. He also served at Yongsan Air Base, South Korea, and Chambersburg, Pa. In February 2006, Sgt. Nylander arrived at officer training school where he was recognized as the No. 1 graduate of his class. From 2006 through 2009, Lt. Nylander was stationed at Hickam AFB, Hawaii.
In May 2009, Lt. Nylander became the flight commander for Central Flight at the 25th Operational Weather Squadron at Davis-Monthan AFB, Ariz. After only three months on the job, he was lauded as an "exceptional performer" by the standardization and evaluation team inspectors and pivotal to the squadron's "excellent" rating.
In his critical leadership role, Capt. Nylander was extremely innovative. His ideas laid the foundation of a squadron reorganization that propelled weather performance to its highest levels in over a decade. Most recently, Capt. Nylander was a flight commander with the 438th Air Expeditionary Wing base in the Afghan capital.
Capt. Nylander received the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Medal with 1 oak leaf cluster, AF Commendation Medal w/3 OLC, Joint Service Achievement Medal, AF Achievement Medal, AF Combat Action Medal, AF Outstanding Unit Award w/1 Silver OLC as well as numerous other awards and decorations."
Nathan was a true American hero. Godspeed, Nathan.
Thanks to Alice Practice and Max Turpin
for their assistance with this memorial.
Wendell J. Nylander (1954 - 2011)
Note: A committal service was also held at Graceland Cemetery in Fairbury, Illinois
East Lawn Palms Cemetery & Mortuary
Maintained by: MidwestMom
Originally Created by: Elizabeth Reed
Record added: Apr 29, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 69074882