Ga. soldier killed in Iraq remembered at Fort Benning - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Ga. soldier killed in Iraq remembered at Fort Benning

By Andrew Wittenberg  - bio | email | Twitter

FORT BENNING, GA (WTVM) - Friends remember a Fort Benning soldier's life while his family prepares for the birth of a son he will never see.

Staff sergeant Briand Williams was killed in Iraq 12 days ago.

"No, momma, everything's good, everything's good, everything's good."

The words Williams used to say to his mother, Tonya Flippen.

Williams always called home to let her know he was okay, but on November 22nd, she got a different phone call.

Williams was killed when insurgents attacked his unit in Numaniva, Iraq.

Despite a wife and daughter at home and a son on the way, his mother knew Williams' wanted to serve his country -- putting himself in harms way.

"He always assured me that is exactly what he wanted to do, and I was just so proud of him for being a man," Flippen said.

To his colleagues, like Captain Christian Iten, Williams was a hero -- a family man who always knew how to make you laugh.

"Just the number of people who showed up today, is evident of how many people he knew and touched. And just his daily interaction, he just had that personality that always brought a smile to your face, no matter what kind of day you were having," Iten said.

Others remembered his laid back nature.

"He liked to go fishing," said Private First Class Waylan Waldrep at Friday's gathering.

Though they never caught much, the lessons he learned from Williams' leadership will never be forgotten.

"A ceremony doesn't show gratitude, enough towards what he did for us, the United States and our battalion," Waldrep said.

And though he will certainly be missed, Williams family knows his death was not in vain.

"He died doing what he loved," Flippen said.

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