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SGT Marcus Shawn Futrell

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SGT Marcus Shawn Futrell

Birth
Fayetteville, Cumberland County, North Carolina, USA
Death
2 Dec 2005 (aged 20)
Nasiriyah, Dhi Qar, Iraq
Burial
Macon, Bibb County, Georgia, USA
Memorial ID
12629403 View Source

Spc. Marcus S. Futrell
Age: 20
Hometown: Macon, GA
Date of Death: 12/2/2005
Incident Location: Tallil Air Base, Iraq
Branch of Military: Army
Rank: Spc.
Unit: 148th Forward Support Battalion, 48th Brigade Combat Team
Unit's Base: Forsyth, Ga.

Futrell died at Tallil Air Base, Iraq, on December 2, 2005 of injuries sustained earlier that day when his truck accidentally rolled over.

At age 17, Marcus Futrell was too young to join the National Guard without his mother's signature, so she signed him in.

He hoped his military stint would net him the funds to further his education.

Instead, his mother got a visit Sunday that every military relative dreads: two officers on her front step, delivering the news that her son, now 20, would not be coming home.

Futrell was one of three members of the guard's 48th Brigade Combat Team who died Friday when their vehicle overturned in Iraq.

"I had just talked to him the Sunday before he was killed," said his mother, Cheryl Futrell, a legal enforcement agent at the state Child Support Recovery Unit in Macon.

"Every time I talked to him I told him I loved him," she said, her voice soft but steady. He was too much the macho soldier to say the same in return, but his mother said his love was an unspoken truth between them.

Marcus Futrell was born into a military family. His father serves in the Air Force. Before Marcus was 10, they had moved from Fayetteville, N.C., to Okinawa, Japan, and then to Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.

In 1995 they moved to the Macon area. It was around then that his parents divorced. Marcus attended Rice Elementary, McEvoy Middle and Southwest High schools before graduating from Crawford County High School.

At 5-foot-11 and 142 pounds, he was small for a tight end, but that's the position he played during his senior year on the high school football team. It wasn't a winning year for the team, but he loved football.

"I was there at every game," his mother said.

Besides football, she said, he was crazy about Game Boy and repairing electronic gadgets. He took a semester of electronics at Central Georgia Technical College before going overseas.

"He could fix things," Cheryl Futrell said. "He loved tinkering with stuff." The military used his skills. He installed communications equipment in Humvees and worked on computers, she said.

Cheryl Futrell said her son didn't know what to expect from boot camp. But she said he grew up there.

"He came back a different man," she said. His "yes, ma'am" and "no, ma'am" came automatically. He contributed his earnings to the household without being asked.

"That was the one thing I was afraid I couldn't do, teach him how to be a man, and he got it from the Army," she said.

As a guardsman, he provided security during the G-8 Summit on the Georgia coast and hurricane relief in Florida. In January, the 48th Brigade was called to active duty. In May, Marcus Futrell and his fellow soldiers were sent overseas. First stop Kuwait, then on to Iraq.

He didn't like to worry his mother, so they didn't speak about what he did from day to day. When he called home, Marcus wanted to know about her work and the latest news from Macon.

Sunday morning, when the officers came to her door, Cheryl Futrell's mind refused at first to grasp what it meant.

"I knew this can't be so," she said. But then she did know.

"I couldn't say anything or do anything because I knew what was going on. You don't want to hear them say it."

She said Marcus' younger sister Sheedra, 17, is taking it hard. The siblings were close.

Now Cheryl Futrell is left with questions: How did her son die, and why?

The guard has given her no details except that the Humvee rolled over. She wants to know more about the circumstances.

"No officials from the military have called me and talked to me," she said. "I'm angry. I want to know why my son died. I want to know why he's not coming home." She was told there would be more contacts from the military after the funeral, which has not yet been scheduled.

Not having information, she said, "makes me uncertain about what's going on."

She takes comfort in one thing: He was not alone. Among the soldiers who died with him was Spc. Philip Allan Dodson Jr. of Forsyth. Cheryl Futrell worked with Dodson as a correctional officer several years ago at the Al Burrus Correctional Training Center. She liked and respected him. She ran into him last spring when she was bidding her son farewell at Fort Stewart.

"I said, 'Keep an eye out for him, will you?"' she recalled.

Cheryl Futrell also has questions about the bigger picture.

"I have a lot of questions about the war," she said. "This is all senseless. They could have been sent home months ago. Normally, you would think of a National Guard unit being national, not international."

Cheryl Futrell said her son's unit was better suited to respond to Hurricane Katrina than fight in Iraq.

"If I had the slightest concern that this was where he would be headed in a couple of years after he signed up, I would have discouraged him. I wouldn't have signed," she said.

She added, "He was a good boy. He was a good son. He was a good brother, and he would have been a good man."


**Special thanks to Find A Grave contributor, Jamie Hicks Tiernan for fulfilling my photo request for Marcus Futrell.

Spc. Marcus S. Futrell
Age: 20
Hometown: Macon, GA
Date of Death: 12/2/2005
Incident Location: Tallil Air Base, Iraq
Branch of Military: Army
Rank: Spc.
Unit: 148th Forward Support Battalion, 48th Brigade Combat Team
Unit's Base: Forsyth, Ga.

Futrell died at Tallil Air Base, Iraq, on December 2, 2005 of injuries sustained earlier that day when his truck accidentally rolled over.

At age 17, Marcus Futrell was too young to join the National Guard without his mother's signature, so she signed him in.

He hoped his military stint would net him the funds to further his education.

Instead, his mother got a visit Sunday that every military relative dreads: two officers on her front step, delivering the news that her son, now 20, would not be coming home.

Futrell was one of three members of the guard's 48th Brigade Combat Team who died Friday when their vehicle overturned in Iraq.

"I had just talked to him the Sunday before he was killed," said his mother, Cheryl Futrell, a legal enforcement agent at the state Child Support Recovery Unit in Macon.

"Every time I talked to him I told him I loved him," she said, her voice soft but steady. He was too much the macho soldier to say the same in return, but his mother said his love was an unspoken truth between them.

Marcus Futrell was born into a military family. His father serves in the Air Force. Before Marcus was 10, they had moved from Fayetteville, N.C., to Okinawa, Japan, and then to Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.

In 1995 they moved to the Macon area. It was around then that his parents divorced. Marcus attended Rice Elementary, McEvoy Middle and Southwest High schools before graduating from Crawford County High School.

At 5-foot-11 and 142 pounds, he was small for a tight end, but that's the position he played during his senior year on the high school football team. It wasn't a winning year for the team, but he loved football.

"I was there at every game," his mother said.

Besides football, she said, he was crazy about Game Boy and repairing electronic gadgets. He took a semester of electronics at Central Georgia Technical College before going overseas.

"He could fix things," Cheryl Futrell said. "He loved tinkering with stuff." The military used his skills. He installed communications equipment in Humvees and worked on computers, she said.

Cheryl Futrell said her son didn't know what to expect from boot camp. But she said he grew up there.

"He came back a different man," she said. His "yes, ma'am" and "no, ma'am" came automatically. He contributed his earnings to the household without being asked.

"That was the one thing I was afraid I couldn't do, teach him how to be a man, and he got it from the Army," she said.

As a guardsman, he provided security during the G-8 Summit on the Georgia coast and hurricane relief in Florida. In January, the 48th Brigade was called to active duty. In May, Marcus Futrell and his fellow soldiers were sent overseas. First stop Kuwait, then on to Iraq.

He didn't like to worry his mother, so they didn't speak about what he did from day to day. When he called home, Marcus wanted to know about her work and the latest news from Macon.

Sunday morning, when the officers came to her door, Cheryl Futrell's mind refused at first to grasp what it meant.

"I knew this can't be so," she said. But then she did know.

"I couldn't say anything or do anything because I knew what was going on. You don't want to hear them say it."

She said Marcus' younger sister Sheedra, 17, is taking it hard. The siblings were close.

Now Cheryl Futrell is left with questions: How did her son die, and why?

The guard has given her no details except that the Humvee rolled over. She wants to know more about the circumstances.

"No officials from the military have called me and talked to me," she said. "I'm angry. I want to know why my son died. I want to know why he's not coming home." She was told there would be more contacts from the military after the funeral, which has not yet been scheduled.

Not having information, she said, "makes me uncertain about what's going on."

She takes comfort in one thing: He was not alone. Among the soldiers who died with him was Spc. Philip Allan Dodson Jr. of Forsyth. Cheryl Futrell worked with Dodson as a correctional officer several years ago at the Al Burrus Correctional Training Center. She liked and respected him. She ran into him last spring when she was bidding her son farewell at Fort Stewart.

"I said, 'Keep an eye out for him, will you?"' she recalled.

Cheryl Futrell also has questions about the bigger picture.

"I have a lot of questions about the war," she said. "This is all senseless. They could have been sent home months ago. Normally, you would think of a National Guard unit being national, not international."

Cheryl Futrell said her son's unit was better suited to respond to Hurricane Katrina than fight in Iraq.

"If I had the slightest concern that this was where he would be headed in a couple of years after he signed up, I would have discouraged him. I wouldn't have signed," she said.

She added, "He was a good boy. He was a good son. He was a good brother, and he would have been a good man."


**Special thanks to Find A Grave contributor, Jamie Hicks Tiernan for fulfilling my photo request for Marcus Futrell.

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