Gold Star Memorial - 2nd Lt Joseph Fortin
The following was written by his surviving father.
Joseph Douglas Fortin, born November 5,1986, was named after 3 great grandfathers, born the youngest of 3 children in 39 months,(Jocelyn, Jennifer, & Joe). How proud my father was of all 6 of his grandchildren but for Joe to carry on the Fortin name, it meant a lot to my dad, it was a sign to him that he would do great things no matter how modest it would seem.
Joey as he was called in his younger years, loved to play good versus evil. Whether I was killed either as an Indian, robber, villain etc… . He was bound and determined to keep a peaceful country and world from a very young age. At three we have a picture of him dressed as a cowboy, 5/6 years old he was a true GI Joe muddied face, & who can forget The Batman with his cousin Denelle as Robin, and in high school he wanted to ride in police cars.
The true dynamics of my son to serve seem to come out the strongest when 9/11 happened. That beautiful clear September day, when our world & lives would change forever, convinced my son that we had to have a more peaceful world. Every waking moment he had when his studies were done he watched the tv about what would happen next. It was so hard for him to wrap his head around the idea that these people thought it alright to kill innocent peoples of all nationalities.
Joe graduated RWU in Criminal Justice, joined the ROTC program his freshman/ sophomore summer, and graduated as a 2nd Lt. He married two weeks later to a beautiful young lady, Nicquelle and went off to Oklahoma for heavy artillery training where he did so well in, that the Army held him back to teach the upcoming young officers.
He finally caught up to his battalion in Iraq through Fort Hood 4 months later. My wife and I went down to Fort Hood to say our goodbyes. Joe kept telling his worried mom that things would be alright because heavy artillery we’re always 10 miles behind the lines. I knew & he knew , in war he would be placed where the Army needed him. I asked why he wasn’t scared of dying? His response was,” dad , I could handle it if I go but if I give an order to my squad and anyone dies, I’ll never be able to forgive myself .”
Well that August 23,2009, our son Lt.Joseph D. Fortin died by a IED explosive device while he was on patrol. Miraculously only two injured in the rest of the convoy. Dear Joe, you truly did become an American Hero. How we miss your smile, beautiful eyes w/ long eyelashes , (lady killers). Your sense of generosity, your love of life with not a racial bone in you body. You died to save others and that you did. Your family including nieces and nephews born after your death all think about you regularly and you my son, “ SHALL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN “. Love Dad, Martin J. Fortin, Gold Star Father.
- Peter Antal