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VILSECK, Germany — Their names were Milo, Milledge, Marchand and Meza, and the Rose Barracks chapel was overflowing with mourners Friday.

Members of the 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment all, they died in Baghdad within days of each other. Spc. Avealao Milo was killed Oct. 4, when he and his fellow soldiers came under small-arms fire.

Sgt. Joseph Bradley Milledge and Cpl. Jason Nicholas Marchand were killed the following day when a bomb went off while they were clearing a building. On Oct. 6, Cpl. Gilberto Alexander Meza was killed, also while on a building-clearance mission. He was 21.

A proud native of American Samoa, Milo was 23 when he died. Big and strong, he played flanker on his rugby team and excelled at any physical test the Army threw at him, said Capt. Raul Vasquez, 2nd SCR’s 2nd Squadron rear detachment commander.

A quiet man, Milo could be seen around his barracks wearing traditional Samoan garb. “He was proud of his family, proud of his culture … [and] recently proud to be a husband,” Vasquez said.

Milo leaves behind his wife, Jocelyn; father, Mareko; and mother, Folola. He also was the oldest of four siblings.

Milledge, Marchand and Meza were all members of the 3rd Squadron “Wolfpack,” which is commanded by Lt. Col. Rod Coffey. Capt. David Dykema, Wolfpack rear detachment commander, read remarks previously given by Coffey during a memorial in Baghdad.

“Through our great good fortune, in our youth our hearts were touched with fire,” said Coffey, quoting Civil War veteran and Supreme Court justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, who despite garnering much fame and respect throughout his life, wanted to be remembered simply as a soldier.

Believing that the hearts of Milledge, Marchand and Meza were touched by fire, Coffey said Milledge will be remembered as an outstanding young leader; Marchand as a great friend and fellow soldier loved by his peers; and Meza as one who would never back down from a challenge, who once marched with an extra 50 pounds on his back for 10 miles just because he could.

“Sergeant Milledge and Corporals Marchand and Meza are now and forever more great Americans … the Wolfpack was a better organization for having you as a part of us. We will remember you and we will miss you,” Coffey said.

Born in Point Blank, Iowa, Milledge was 23. He is survived by his wife, Amanda; son, Joseph; and parents, Jack and Carla.

West Virginia native Marchand was 26 and is survived by his wife, April; daughter, Savannah; and parents, William Marchand and Debra Parsons.

Meza, from Oxnard, Calif., is survived by his parents Rigoberto Meza and Silvia Martinez, and his brother, Rigo.

“We must be proud of these soldiers. … We must be proud of their brothers- and sisters-in-arms who have not flinched in the face of evil,” Maj. Thomas Rickard, 2nd SCR rear detachment commander, said at the memorial.

“We must believe in our soldiers, trust their judgment and accept their scars of war,” Rickard said.

The 4,000 “Dragoons” of 2nd SCR left Vilseck for a 15-month tour in Baghdad in August. Eight men have been killed.

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