VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (NNS) -- Naval Special Warfare Group (NSWG) 2 held a memorial service July 18 for three Sailors killed as a result of enemy action while conducting combat operations in the vicinity of Baghdad, Iraq.
Families, friends and shipmates remembered Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Jason Dale Lewis (SEAL), Cryptologic Technician (Technical) 1st Class Steven Phillip Daugherty and Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Robert Richard McRill, all killed July 6.
The families were presented shadowboxes including American flags which had been flown over Iraq by the SEAL unit they'd served with, along with other symbols of their loved ones' achievements. Commander NSWG-2, Capt. Chaz Heron, also presented all three families with a Purple Heart, Bronze Star with valor, Iraqi Campaign Medal and Combat Action Ribbon that the Sailors had been awarded posthumously.
"These men made a difference. There is no greater cause. There is no greater dignity," said Heron. "We will miss you, and we will never forget the ultimate price you paid."
The mission that took their lives was time-sensitive and targeted a high value individual, according to Heron. After completing the mission, enemy insurgents ambushed their convoy and the Humvee the three Sailors were in was struck by an improvised explosive device and small arms fire from multiple positions.
The three men, all of whom were fathers, were remembered more for their lives off the battlefield. Although they were all dedicated to their mission, they were also determined to live life to the fullest, according to their families and friends.
McRill was remembered for always being willing to be a shoulder to lean on, whether during a working party, studying for advancement or helping deal with life's curveballs. Daugherty could put anyone at ease, and pushed himself and those around him to do things just a little better every time. Lewis was a handyman who's quick fixes, involving a technique known as "eyeballing," often became weeklong projects full of humor and a good time with friends.
After sharing memories with the more than 1,200 who gathered for the memorial, a video was shown with pictures depicting the three Sailors on the job and at home with family and friends.
Lt. Cmdr. Cory Cathcart, a chaplain with NSWG-2, stepped up to the podium to say a final farewell.
"Rest in peace my brothers," he said. "Now we have the watch."
For more news from Naval Special Warfare Group 2, visit at www.news.navy.mil/local/nswgtwo/.