Army Spc. Andrew R. Looney
Died June 21, 2010 serving during Operation Enduring Freedom
22, of Owasso, Okla.; assigned to 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died June 21 from wounds sustained when a suicide bomber attacked his unit at Lar Sholtan Village, Afghanistan. Also killed was Pfc. David T. Miller.
(The following was taken from www.tulsaworld.com of June 24, 2010) OWASSO — A young Owasso soldier who lost part of his foot while serving in Iraq three years ago, yet stayed with the Army out of a sense of patriotic duty, was killed this week in Afghanistan.
The Department of Defense said Spc. Andrew R. Looney, 22, of Owasso, was one of two soldiers killed Monday when a suicide bomber attacked their unit at Lar Sholtan, Afghanistan.
The other soldier was identified as Pfc. David T. Miller, 19, of Wilton, N.Y.
Both were assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 101st Airborne Division, based at Fort Campbell, Ky.
According to Fort Campbell’s website, the two were at a traffic-control checkpoint near the village when an insurgent wearing an explosives-packed vest approached them and blew himself up.
Looney’s father, Richard Looney, said his son developed an avid interest in the military while in his teens, and he was further inspired by military movies, in particular the HBO series “Band of Brothers.”
Looney played football while at Owasso High School, where he graduated in 2005.
That summer, his father said, his son joined the Army because he truly felt it was his calling.
“He was very determined about that. Very strong,” the father said.
Richard Looney said his son grew up respecting authority, and further described him as “very compliable … a young man who was nonchalant, who took things in stride.”
“He was very unassuming,” Richard Looney said. “He loved sports and history, but, most of all, he loved the military. He was very straight and narrow about that.”
The father said his son arrived in Iraq in Febuary 2007, and in August of that year, while his son was in a Humvee in Baghdad a roadside bomb exploded and blew off part of his right foot.
He spent more than a year at Brooke Army Medical Center at San Antonio, recuperating from his injuries, while undergoing rehabilitation after being fitted with a prosthetic.
“While he was at Brooke, I kept thinking he would pursue other interests,” his father said.
But that wasn’t to be.
Richard Looney said his son didn’t want to pursue other things, not even go to college. Instead, he said, his son was bound and determined to stay in the military, to stay in the infantry.
“He was very patriotic, very much so. He was very much that way,” he said.
“I think he felt he was making a difference in the war, and was much needed.”
From Brooke Army Medical Center, Andrew Looney was assigned to Fort Campbell, arriving there in February 2009.
Richard Looney said his son went to Afghanistan about six weeks ago.
The last time the family saw him was in April, “and he was looking forward to his assignment in Afghanistan,” the father said.
The soldier’s body has already been returned to the United States, though funeral arrangements are pending.
In addition to his father, he is survived by his mother, Martha Looney; a sister, Joanna Looney, 27; and a brother, Steven Looney, 24, who recently discharged from the Navy.
A family friend, Kelly Holliday of Broken Arrow, said the soldier’s death left her saddened, and that this loss brought home more vividly the loss of her own son.