Soldiers of Company E, 1st Battalion, 13th Infantry Regiment, render a final salute to Pvt. Michael Wise following his memorial service at the Solomon Center Sept. 19. (Photo Credit: Josephine Carlson)
By Josephine Carlson Fort Jackson Leader
Soldiers of Company E, 1st Battalion, 13th Infantry Regiment gathered to remember Pvt. Michael Wise at a memorial service at the Solomon Center Sept. 19.
Wise passed away Sept. 12 while he was attending Basic Combat Training leaving behind a wife, Jessica, 2-year-old daughter, Rosalie, and a baby on the way.
It was a very solemn morning, as speakers took turns sharing kind words about Wise.
Lt. Col. Terrence Soule, 1-13th commander, thanked those attending for taking time out of their schedules, and praised Wise’s decision to join the Army.
“He chose a life of service,” Soule said. “He raised his hand and volunteered at a time and place in history when his nation needed him. There is no more honorable endeavor than to dedicate your life to the service of a greater cause. The personal sacrifices made by Michael and generations of Americans who came before him are the reason that we live in the freest most prosperous nation in the world.”
As Soldiers listened intently, Wise’s battle buddy, Pvt. Hunter Wilkie spoke about their time in training.
“One of my favorite memories I shared with Pvt. Wise is when we had a 30-minute conversation about our mutual favorite snack, Puppy Chow…We had a whole conversation about how much we had missed it and what were the best ways to make it,” Wilkie said.
Later Chaplain (1st Lt.) Shane Withrow, encouraged everyone attending.
“Even though Michael is no longer with us in this physical life, he will always be with us in our hearts,” Withrow said. He will live on through you and me as we pour our lives into each other. As we motivate, mentor, teach and lead; Michael’s legacy lives on.”
As the memorial service came to a close, 1st Sgt. Jason Guerrero delivered the final roll call, “Pvt. Wise … Pvt. Michael Wise … Pvt. Michael J. Wise.”
Outside of view the firing party broke the silence with the first of three volleys. The 21-rifle salute was completed and a solemn bugler played Taps.
Finally, as they exited the building, Soldiers were given the opportunity to render a final salute in front of the memorial and leave notes and mementos for Wise.