Memorial held for Fort Gordon soldier killed in Afghanistan

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News 12 First at Five, August 7, 2007

AUGUSTA, GA-- Fort Gordon honors a fallen hero. Sgt. Taurean Harris was remembered in a memorial service this afternoon (Tuesday, August 7).

Sgt. Harris was killed last Thursday by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. He was 22-years-old. Sgt. Harris was assigned to Fort Gordon last October and spent only 60 days at the Fort before deploying for duty,
but true to his character, he left a lasting impression.

The men and women in uniform at Fort Gordon also wore their tears proudly at a memorial service to remember a fallen brother and American hero.

"What really struck me about him was he was a man who constantly wanted to do better. He wasn't a quitter. He learned from a very hard training event and said he'd do better and that's exactly what he did." reflects Colonial William David, Commander of the 513th Military Intelligence Brigade.

He was Sgt. Taurean Harris' commander but Colonial David says their bond was much deeper than that. "We talked about family and talked about things that were important to both of us, that doesn't matter about rank. Rank kind of falls by the wayside and we started to connect on a more personal level and that's why I remember him quite frankly. He stood out to me because of that personal connection and in particular we talked about his little 22 month old girl."

Sgt. Harris enlisted in the army in June of 2003 and at 22-years-old he was a decorated American soldier. He was awarded a bronze star medal, a purple heart, an army good conduct medal along with many more. His mother Yolanda Wagner told his home paper in Mississippi that Taurean was the perfect son and often comforted her worries of his job by saying "you know your son is a soldier." She was looking forward to him coming home for Christmas, but instead she and his family are now planning his funeral.

"Sgt. Harris will be remembered. He'll be that strength that allows us to go out in the woods and train and get ready for our next rotation and in the heat of Georgia or in the mountains of Afghanistan when they feel themselves starting to give a bit because they're tired or warn out I guarantee they'll reflect back on Sgt. Harris who did not quit and who gave his all, and they will find that strength." adds Colonial David.

Sgt. Harris had planned to buy a house in Augusta after his discharge. He wanted to take electrical engineering classes and raise his daughter here.

He was raised in Liberty, Mississippi and plans are underway to add his name to that County's war memorial wall near their courthouse.

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