FORT HOOD, Texas - Staff Sgt. Justin Tate, a Soldier from 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, was mourned at a ceremony at the Memorial Chapel, here, Jan. 21.

The ceremony took place in the morning at the church on Fort Hood with a slide show featuring pictures of Tate.

The full chapel of quiet Soldiers, family and friends, listened attentively as those close to Tate spoke of the tragedy of death and recalled memories of his work ethic and leadership. Tears streamed down family members faces as the speakers talked about Tate's character.

"I knew Staff. Sgt. Justin Tate as a man of true integrity, someone a young Soldier would want to be like and certainly someone you would want on your side in combat," said Spc. Ricky Scroggins, a team leader in Tate's squad.

Sgt. Salvador Gutierrez said Tate helped everyone to be a good non-commissioned officer and a good Soldier overall. He said he was the platoon rock, he knew something about everything and when he talked, people listened. There was nothing fake about him and he loved being a Soldier.

"Staff Sgt. Tate was the platoon teacher, adjudicator, task master, and at all times a firm but fair disciplinarian," said Gutierrez.

Tate entered the United States Army as an infantryman in 2000. His first duty station was Fort Drum, New York, where he served in the 10th Mountain Division in the 2nd Battalion, 14th Infantry Regiment. In 2007, he was reassigned to Fort Hood, where he served in the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, the Warrior Transition Unit, and Bravo Company, 1st Battalion, 12th Cavalry Regiment.

"His imprint was laid heavily on his platoon, and on B Company as a whole. We are better for having known him. He will be missed," said Gutierrez.

Tate is survived by his wife, daughter, sister, mother and grandmother.

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