On Memorial Day, combat veteran Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) honored eight fallen service members whom the former Navy SEAL personally knew with touching tributes.
“Enjoy your Memorial Day and let us remember why we celebrate,” the Republican congressman posted on Monday. “We celebrate the lives of the heroes we have lost. Never Forget. Read entire thread please.”
Crenshaw memorialized the lives of Brendan Looney, Pat Feeks, Dave Warsen, Kevin Ebbert, Brad Cavner, Tom Fouke, Brett Marihugh, and Charles Keating IV, AKA Chuck Heavy.
“Brendan Looney. Did our first deployment together at SEAL Team 3. One of the best and most respected leaders on the Team. Husband, son, and brother,” wrote the Texas rep. “‘Be Strong. Be accountable. Never complain.'”
“One of the best JTACs out there. Best story teller I ever met (those who knew him will understand!). Loyal friend, husband, brother, and son. He always showed up when you asked him to,” he wrote of Feeks.
“Dave Warsen. All American,” posted Crenshaw. “Spent a lot of time together on our deployment to Afghanistan. When not on missions, we’d hit the volleyball court (half sand, half rocks). Strongest guy in the platoon, and also the happiest. Truly loved and missed.”
“Kevin Ebbert,” a former roommate of Crenshaw’s, was “[o]ne of the smartest, most capable, kindest SEALs I ever knew. Skilled medic, loving husband. Missed dearly,” the rep. said.
“Cool, collected, and a great operator,” the freshman congressman said of Cavner. “Brad taught me to shoot left-handed after I lost my right eye, and spent countless hours getting my CQC skills back up to speed. ‘It’s about the Brotherhood.'”
Honoring Mr. Fouke, another former roommate of Crenshaw, the Republican posted: “Dear friend. The gentlest big guy I ever knew. He raised an Argentine Horned frog named Lester when we lived together. Loved life, loved Metallica. World would be a better place with him in it.”
“Brett Marihugh. The most motivating and entertaining guy in our BUD/S class,” another tribute read. “Told stories for hours about his time as a cop before he joined. He pretended to be a doctor so he could visit my hospital room in Afghanistan and check up on me after I got hit by an IED.”
Crenshaw’s last memorial read: “Charles Keating IV. ‘Chuck Heavy’. His laugh was contagious. Life of the party. He was killed placing himself in danger so that his Team wouldn’t have to. Navy Cross recipient. Epic hero, husband, son, brother.”
Crenshaw’s powerful thread was liked over 62,000 times and re-tweeted some 17,000-plus times.
The former Navy SEAL lost his eye in an IED explosion during his third deployment in Afghanistan.
“On Dan’s third deployment in 2012, his life changed forever. After six months of combat operations, Dan was hit by an IED blast during a mission in Helmand province, Afghanistan,” Crenshaw’s campaign website describes the incident. “He was evacuated and awoke from his medically induced coma learning that his right eye had been destroyed in the blast and his left eye was still present, but badly damaged. Dan was completely blind and the doctors did not believe he would ever see again. Tara stood by him every day and night, keeping faith and praying he would see again. After several difficult surgeries, he eventually regained sight in his left eye, a miracle according to the head surgeon.”
Crenshaw served two more deployments after suffering the serious injury. He’s earned two Bronze Stars and a Purple Heart among his many recognitions.