March 7, 2012

Edward Cantrell

US special forces soldier, Edward Cantrell, age 36, died on March 6, 2012, in a house fire in Hope Mills, North Carolina.

Also killed in the fire were his daughters Isabella (age 6) and Natalia (age 4). 

Edward Cantrell and his wife escaped from the blaze in their home at 1:00 a.m. by jumping from the home's second floor. Edward then re-entered the house in attempt to reach his daughters who were in second floor bedrooms. He and his daughters were later found dead. 

Edward was a member of the 3rd Special Forces Group at Fort Bragg. He held the rank of chief warrant officer 2. He was born in Dyersburg, Tennessee and joined the Army in 1994 as a military policeman. He served in 2nd Infantry Division, Camp Howze, Korea, and then the 503rd Military Police Battalion, at Fort Bragg, N.C. where he deployed in support of Operation Joint Endeavor to Bosnia and Herzegovina. He later served with the Southern European Task Force in Vicenza, Italy.

In 2004, Edward graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course and was assigned to 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), serving as a Communications and Intelligence Sergeant on four combat deployments. He attended the Warrant Officer Candidate Course followed by the Special Forces Warrant Officer Basic Course in 2009 and was then assigned to another ODA as the assistant detachment commander.  He completed six total combat deployments: one to Iraq and five to Afghanistan. He returned home from his most recent combat tour supporting Operation Enduring Freedom in August 2011.

Jesus, pray for Edward,
Isabella and Natalia.
Pray for Louise, who has
lost her loved ones.
His awards and decorations include four Bronze Star Medals, the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal with Valor device, four Army Commendation Medals, 11 Army Achievement Medals, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with four stars, Iraq Campaign Medal with one star, Kosovo Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Humanitarian Service Medal, six Overseas Service Ribbons, Army Service Ribbon, the NATO Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Master Parachutist's Badge and the Air Assault Badge. He was also the recipient of the Bruce E. Price Leadership Award.

Edward is survived by many loving friends and relatives including his parents, his wife, Louise; and a son. 

Let us pray to God the Father, Jesus, all of the saints and all of the angels that Edward Cantrell and his daughters Isabella and Natalia are in heaven. Let us pray that they are at peace and are with God. Amen

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