FORT HOOD, Texas - A rifle, combat boots and dog tags, the traditional decorations for an Army memorial service, stand at the "Ironhorse" Chapel, here, July 28 in remembrance of Sgt. Derek Schicchi.

FORT HOOD, Texas - Sgt. Derek Schicchi, known to many as a great friend and outstanding Soldier, was remembered during his memorial service at the "Ironhorse" Chapel, here, July 28.

According to Schicchi's friends he was the type of friend that could make any situation feel better.

Schicchi served in the U.S. Navy for about six years, and later joined the U.S. Army in February of 2007 as a track vehicle mechanic. He attended the Warrior Training course at White Sands, N.M. before attending advanced individual training at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md.

In September of 2007, he arrived on Fort Hood and was assigned to D Troop, Forward Support Troop, 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division; deploying immediately in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08.

Sgt. Michael Middleton said they met during the OIF 06-08 deployment, became instant friends and later roommates.

"He was really into his cars," Middleton said about his friend. "We would always argue about whose car could beat the other."

It's not a secret that cars were a passion of his-multiple comrades left "Hot Wheels" cars at the base of his memorial as tributes to his memory.

Cars weren't the only thing this "outstanding" Soldier was known for, according to Lt. Col. Grover Southerland, Schicchi's battalion commander.

"Schicchi was a young, motivated [noncommissioned officer] with a future," he said. "He understood the standards, and held a winning attitude."

"If times started to get tough he would just crack a joke or quote a movie," said Middleton. "He was great at bringing anyone's morale up."

Schicchi's friendly smile and lending hand will greatly be missed.

"You'll always be in our hearts," said Capt. Daniel Eusebio, his troop commander. "And forever missed."

Schicchi is survived by his parents Peter Schicchi and Donna Hernandez; his brothers Justin Schicchi and Hernan Hernandez; and his sister Joslyn Schicchi.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16