LAKE CITY, SC (WMBF) – A soldier from Lake City died overseas this week while serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Army Sgt. Aaron Arthur, 25, of Morris St. in Lake City died Monday north of Al-Kut in a vehicle roll-over accident, according to the U.S. Department of Defense. Spc. Lakeshia M. Bailey, 23, of Columbus, GA, was also killed in the crash.
Both Arthur and Bailer were assigned to the 203rd Brigade Support Battalion, attached to the 1st Battalion, 10th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Benning, GA.
Family members and friends gathered Wednesday at the home of Arthur's mother, Bobbie Jean Arthur. She said her son loved serving in the Army, and he was always excited to part of the action.
Bobbie Jean Arthur said she will remember her son as an outgoing person with lots of friends. She said he sang in the church choir, played football at Lake City High School and was also in JROTC.
"Aaron was a loving young man," she said. "He loved football. He loved all of his family. He loved all of them to death."
Sgt. Arthur's sister Tamiko Swinton said he joined the Army in November 2003. Earlier that year, he graduated from high school.
"He always wanted to go since he was in ROTC," Swinton remembered. "He loved the work. He loved his country, so that was his life."
Swinton also said her brother always kept an upbeat attitude, even while communicating from Iraq. She said they talked via a computer connection almost every week.
"Whenever we talked we always laughed, joked and acted up and everything – keep in contact with each other," Swinton said.
Arthur was on his third tour of duty in Iraq. He was based at Ft. Benning, Georgia.
His family was planning funeral arrangements with Samuel and Richardson Funeral Home of Lake City on Wednesday. Those plans have not been finalized.
While in service, officials with the U.S. Army say Bailey earned the Army Commendation Medal, two Army Good Conduct Medals, the National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon and Overseas Service Ribbon Combat Action Badge.