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Chief Warrant Officer John R. Priestner View/Sign Guest Book
Chief Warrant Officer John R. Priestner

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Age:   42
Hometown: LeRaysville, PA
Date of Death: 11/6/2006
Incident Location: Balad, Iraq
Branch of Military:   Army
Rank: Chief Warrant Officer
Unit: 1st Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade, 82nd Air
Unit's Base: Fort Bragg, NC

(Additional information provided by the Priestner Family)

John R. Priestner was on his second tour of duty in Iraq, having previously served in Desert Storm from October 12, 1990 to April 14, 1991, serving with the 1/7 CAV. out of Fort Hood, Texas. After a 10-year break in service, during which he served in the Pennsylvania National Guard out of Indiantown Gap & Johnstown, Pennsylvania, John returned to active duty on March 11, 2002 at Fort Bragg, NC, serving as a pilot. "He loved it," said Linda Priestner, his sister-in-law. "He couldn't give up flying."

He was deployed to Afghanistan from November 19, 2002 to August 9, 2003, serving with the 3/229th. He left for Iraq on July 22, 2006 with 1/82 ARB Alpha Company (the Red Wolves). He died on November 6, 2006 with another wonderful pilot, CW 2 Miles P. Henderson, when his Apache helicopter crashed in Balad.

John Richard Priestner left behind his loving wife of almost 19 years, Teresa (Lutz) Priestner, as well as his two beautiful daughters whom he adored, Breanne & Megan Priestner. Priestner enjoyed his boat and playing pool with friends on Saturday nights.

His wife Teresa said, "I'm a military wife. I'll always be a military wife. I love this country. I loved him, and he's not going to be gone from my heart and my home. He's not. I can see him in my kids." She continued, "John had an awesome sense of humor. Very intense, dedicated. He was everything a hero would be."

"Before John left us, he gave us this wonderful gift, by naming us his girls 'Team Priestner.'"

Source: Associated Press
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