Spc Christopher Wesley Opat
Spc. Christopher W. Opat of Cresco, Iowa grew up on a farm near Lime Springs the son of Leslie and Mary Goodlaxson Opat. He was baptized and confirmed in his faith at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church at Lourdes, Iowa. Chris moved with his family to the Lime Springs, Cresco area when he was about a year after his birth. He attended Notre Dame Grade school and graduated from Crestwood High School in 2000. He then earned an Associate degree from Iowa Lakes Community College. He was always a hard worker and wasn’t afraid to break a sweat, even as a child. Chris enlisted in the United States Army in 2003, to serve his country and to get money for school. He completed his basic and Advanced Individual Training, and was previously stationed at Babenhausen, Germany. Chris had planned to make a career in the Army. Chris enjoyed fishing with his grandfather and was an avid Hawkeye fan who loved to watch both the Hawkeyes play football and basketball. He also enjoyed cooking and liked to create his own recipes. He was a gentle person with an adventurous spirit. His civilian and military education include, a high school diploma, Military Occupational Specialty 91D- Power Generation Equipment Repairer qualification course, Combatives Level I (2008), and Combat Lifesavers Course. His Awards and Decorations include, the Army Good Conduct Medal (two awards), National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, and Overseas Service Ribbon. He leaves his parents, his sisters, Anita, and Melissa, his brothers, Leslie, Phillip and Jason. Chris died at age 29 in Baquah, Iraq of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident.
14th Cavalry Regiment
3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team
2nd Infantry Division
Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington
Burial is at Lady of Lourdes Cemetery in Elma, Iowa