Mission: Healing for Families of Our Fallen Soldiers

Captain Kevin Landeck

PFC Matthew Bean

This entry was written by Marlene Morschauser, wife of LTC Robert Morschauser:

It is hard for me to find words to express my deep appreciation and gratitude to Veterans Airlift Command. The reason for my struggle is that I honestly believe the words do not exist. I will do my best, however, to share my experience w/ this phenomenal organization.

In August, my husband LTC Robert Morschauser, deployed his Battalion to Mahmaydiyah, Iraq for a 12 month, now 15 month tour. Sadly, on February 2, 2007, our unit suffered our first KIA. Capt Kevin Landeck was killed in action when his vehicle struck an IED. Kevin was 26 years old, married for a year, loved by all who knew him. As the unit remained forward, those of us here scrambled for ways to afford airfare for the funeral in Chicago. It is certainly no cliché to say that when you join the Army, you become part of a unique family within itself. It was not an option for those in a leadership role not to attend Kevin’s services. I contacted Mr. Fricke and he immediately sprung into action. Within hours I was told that not only had he secured air transportation, but ground transportation as well. This remarkable generosity enabled myself (Battalion Commanders Spouse), the Battery Commander’s spouse, the Battery lst SG (home on r & r) and his wife, to attend the funeral. Our presence at Kevin’s funeral affected those involved in different forms. It helped us to provide comfort and support to Kevin’s wife Bethany, as well as his parents. It also gave our husbands solace in the fact that although they could not attend, there was proper representation on behalf of the unit. We were able to provide the link between his unit family in Iraq to his family mourning him in Illinois.

Sadly, tragedy struck our unit once again on May 31, 2007, when 22 year old PFC Matthew Bean was killed while searching for 3 missing soldiers from our sister unit. Matthew loved landscaping, playing his guitar, and being outdoors. He proposed to his girlfriend Sarah right before deploying. They had just started to plan their future together. Once again, I placed the call to Mr. Fricke. This time my husband, home on R & R, felt very strongly about attending a service for his own soldier, whom he loves as his own. Once again-Mr. Fricke went into action and Mr. Quinn agreed to fly this mission as well. The town of Pembroke, Massachusetts came out to support Matthew and his family. American flags lined the streets as we drove to the grave site. My husband was so moved by what he saw, the emotions came pouring out. Being out of country for almost a year, hearing the media reports about the war, it gave my husband a sense of what this country is really about. It showed him the support of so many Americans. He kept saying over and over again, I wish I had a camera so I could show all the guys. It was also beneficial for Matthew’s family to feel the love of his commander and unit. Again, it gave unit closeness to the family.

When the Fischer House initially provided me w/ the veteran airlift command contact info, I found it hard to believe that such generosity would be extended. However, after speaking w/ Mr. Fricke and our pilot, Mr. Quinn, I realized their genuine care, dedication and support for soldiers and their families. The level of professionalism and kind manner in which they conducted themselves is remarkable. While “thank you” seems like such an inadequate response to your actions, I will say it anyway “THANK YOU” on behalf of the soldiers and families of 2-15 FA BN. I look forward to the day that Veterans Airlift no longer needs to exist, but when that day comes, I will know that I have been touched by amazing people who were a part of it.


Marlene Morschauser2-15 FA BN FRG Advisor

1 comment:

Andy said...

This article is written in such love that I am deeply moved.

I would love to feature your article on my web site:


in the "Writer's club" section. If you can, please submit your web address (URL) for this article at the "Contact" page and select "Recommend an Article." Thank you!