Even in a combat zone, Elizabeth N. Jacobson kept her steady humor. "The room service sucks," she wrote. Asked about her biggest obstacles, she made a short list: sand, guys, waking up, taking a shower when the water is boiling.
"She just made everything fun," said Adam Steinhoff, a former boyfriend. "She was always laughing."
Jacobson, 21, of Riviera Beach, Fla., was killed Sept. 28 by a roadside bomb outside Safwan. She graduated from an adult-education school in Madera, Calif., and was assigned to Goodfellow Air Force Base.
She belonged to the Fresno Playhouse and won a writing contest on Poetry.com before enlisting. She planned to travel the United States with her sisters before returning to Florida, where she hoped for a career in law enforcement.
In an e-mail to friends and family, she wrote, "I want to die happy, and have a productive life. I hope nobody wishes I was never born. I hope my kids never tell me they wish I were like their friend's mom. I hope that I make money, but don't end up a workaholic or stuck up."
She is survived by her parents, David Jacobson and Marianne Earheart.