Pfc. Richard W. Hafer of Cross Lanes, West Virginia attended Laurel Valley High School where the 6′ 5″, 275 pounder was a standout defensive lineman. In 2000, he was voted Lineman of the Year on the All-Gazette football squad. He was also an outstanding wrestler. After graduating in 2000, Rick moved to Nitro, West Virginia so he could be reunited with his half-sisters whom he adored. He enlisted in the United States Army and while serving overseas he was looking forward to a surprise trip to West Virginia for Christmas to see his sisters, and other family. Richard was killed at age 21 when two 101st Airborne Division UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters crashed in Mosul, Iraq. He was posthumously awarded, the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart.
320th Field Artillery
101st Airborne Division (Air Assault)
Fort Campbell, Kentucky
Burial is at Blairsville Cemetery in Blairsville, Pennsylvania