Joseph B. Milledge was an avid reader, especially about religion and philosophy. He especially enjoyed learning and reading about Socrates.
"My brother would always say, 'Don't let schooling get in the way of education,'" said a sister Mary Cooper. "He never stopped reading, and he was always a very good person. He doesn't want to be portrayed just as a soldier because he was much more than that."
Milledge, 23, of Pointblank, Texas, was killed Oct. 5 by a bomb blast in Baghdad. He was a 2002 high school graduate and was assigned to Vilseck, Germany.
"He was a sergeant and a team leader," said his mother, Carla Milledge. "He was a good soldier for the Army. He eventually wanted to get into the Special Forces."
Cooper said Milledge tried to return to Iowa every six months to visit family and maintain his local ties. "No matter where he was, it was always of the uttermost importance for him to see his family," Cooper said. "Even though he had nine nieces and nephews, he would spend quality time with every one of them while he was here."
He also is survived by a wife, Amanda, and a son, Joseph Jr., 1.