FORT BLISS - Dozens of people filled a small chapel on post to say goodbye to three men who gave their lives for our country.
Sergeant First Class Clark Corley Jr. was from Oxnard, California. He was 35. He leaves behind a wife and son. Friends remembered his determination and said he was a mentor to other soldiers.
"He showed me how to be a great soldier and a loving father,” said SSG Archbell. “He loved his son and family very much. 'Family first,' he always said.'"
Specialist Ryan Lumley was from Lakeland, Florida. He was just 21. He also leaves behind a wife. Other soldiers remembered his infectious smile and said he would give you anything.
"Life is short. We can all admit that,” said SGT Vanarsdale. “I'm more than positive that specialist Lumley lived his to the fullest. He must have loved life."
And Specialist Thomas Mayberry from Springville, California, was also 21. Friends tell us he was a good soldier who accomplished his goal of being promoted to Specialist.
"Specialist Mayberry was a committed soldier. If he had a mission he would see it through, no matter how big or how small," said PFC Estevan Montoya. He also leaves behind a wife.
The chaplain called them all heroes.
"This nation that we live in and fight for will remain the land of the free only as it remains the home of the brave. How can we ever repay them? There is nothing we can do but be grateful and keep them in our hearts forever," he said.
Loved ones teared up during the last roll call. Then came a final salute as friends, family and fellow soldiers said their final goodbyes.
The soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb on December 3rd while serving in overseas in Eastern Afghanistan.