Bernard Deghand

Obituary
  • "Today would've been my fathers 49th birthday. Happy..."
    - Craig Thurber
  • "In Honor of Bernie Deghand on Veteran's Day 2012"
  • "September 15, 2011 To the family and friends of Master Sgt...."
    - Peggy Childers
  • "To the family and friends of Master Sgt. Bernard Deghand:..."
    - Peggy Childers
  • "As a cousin that moved far from Topeka when Bernie was..."

Photo Sgt. 1st Class Bernard Bernie Lee Deghand, 42, of Mayetta, Kansas, was killed in action Friday, Sept. 15th, 2006 in Spira, Afghanistan. Born June 30th, 1964 in Topeka, Kansas to Raymond and Barbara (Vorhies) Deghand, Bernie was a long-time resident of Topeka, a 1982 graduate of Shawnee Heights High School, and a member of Sacred Heart Church. While still in high school, he joined the US Army Delayed Entry Program in 1981, and attended Basic Combat & Advanced Individual Training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma in 1982 as a Cannon Crewmember (13B). Following his graduation, he entered the Army Reserves where he served until 1986, upon which time he transferred to the Kansas Army National Guard (KSARNG). During his time in the KSARNG, he attended numerous schools, including the Paladin Commanders Course, the Paladin Howitzer Course, Primary Leadership Development Course, Basic Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) Course, Field Artillery Platoon Sergeants Course, and the Battle Staff NCO Course. In 1996, Bernie was awarded the additional Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) of Infantry Rifleman (11B). Bernie entered the Active Guard Reserve (AGR) program in 1997 and served as the Readiness NCO and Operations NCO for the 35th Infantry Division Headquarters in Leavenworth, Kansas. In Dec. 2002, Bernie deployed to Bosnia as part of the NATO Stabilization Forces and in Aug. 2005 he mobilized with the Division Headquarters for humanitarian relief following Hurricane Katrina. Bernie began his most recent deployment in Afghanistan in Mar. 2006, for Operation Enduring Freedom as a trainer for the Afghan Army, teaching mechanized infantry tactics using armored personnel carriers. Bernie was very active in his childrens activities, including coaching baseball and football teams and was especially proud of his daughters high school and collegiate volleyball and track accomplishments. He enjoyed the outdoors, hunting, fishing, training and breaking horses, playing softball, volleyball, archery, fishing, golfing, and playing cards and family board games. Bernie is survived by his wife, the former Lisa (Groves) Thurber, whom he married on Apr. 29th, 2000 after many years of friendship; children, Jamie Lynn, 19, Craig Michael, 11, and Emma Grace, 1, all of the home; his parents, Raymond and Barbara Deghand of Topeka; brothers, Raymond Deghand, Jr. of Shawnee, and Tony Deghand of Tecumseh; sisters, Theresa Tetuan, Sandra Short and Cheryl Deuser, all of Topeka; and grandfather, Nathan Vorhies of Topeka; in-laws, Jim and Christine Curtis of Maple Hill and Mike and Jane Groves of Kansas City; sister-in-law, Lori Baker of Portland OR; and many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. He is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Albert and Connie Deghand, and maternal grandmother, Beata Vorhies. He will be greatly missed by family and many devoted friends. Upon his death, Bernie was posthumously promoted to the rank of Master Sergeant and awarded the Combat Infantrymans Badge, the Bronze Star Medal and the Purple Heart Medal. His other awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Army Achievement Medal with 4 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Good Conduct Medal with 2 Bronze Knots, the Army Reserve Achievement Medal with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters, the National Defense Service Medal with 1 Bronze Star, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with M device, the Non-Commissioned Officers Professional Development Ribbon with numeral 2, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon with numeral 2, the Army Overseas Training Ribbon with numeral 2, the NATO Medal, the Kansas Meritorious Service Ribbon, the Kansas Commendation Ribbon, the Kansas Achievement Ribbon, the Kansas Emergency Duty Service Ribbon, and the Kansas National Guard Service Medal. Bernie will lie in state Monday, Sept. 25th, from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 333 NE Freeman Avenue in Topeka. Family will receive friends from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. A prayer service will follow at 7 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Sacred Heart Catholic Church on Tuesday, Sept. 26th, at 11 a.m. with military burial to follow at Penwell-Gabel Cemetery (formerly Memorial Park). Memorial services are also being held in Afghanistan and Iraq by Soldiers who have served with Bernie throughout his distinguished career. Memorial contributions may be made to a memorial fund for Bernies children, sent in care of Kevin Brennan Family Funeral Home, 2801 SW Urish Rd, Topeka KS 66614. Online condolences may be sent to www.kevinbrennanfamily. Bernard Deghand
Published in Topeka Capital-Journal from Sept. 23 to Sept. 24, 2006
Funeral Home
Kevin Brennan Family Funeral Home
2801 SW Urish Road Topeka, KS 66614
(785) 272-7888
Funeral Home Details
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