Battalion remembers BCT Soldier
March 3, 2011
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Soldiers with the 3rd Battalion, 34th Infantry Regiment remembered a fallen comrade during a memorial service for Pvt. Jordan Chase Friday at Bayonet Chapel.
Superiors and battle buddies described the 19-year-old as a dedicated, team-oriented and fun-loving Soldier who embodied the Army values.
"Jordan was everything our Army could ask for in a Soldier. He was smart; he was courageous; and he deeply desired to be the best Soldier possible while being a true comrade to his friends and platoon," said Lt. Col. Bryan Hernandez, commander of the 3-34th. "Jordan's desire to serve his country and to persevere through adversity to become a Soldier, and eventually give his life, is an example for all to emulate."
Capt. Ryan Reay, commander of Company A, 3-34th, said he encourages other Soldiers to follow Chase's example.
"Pvt. Chase has completed his mission on earth," Reay said. "It is now time for us, the living, to carry out the mission. Pvt. Chase would want us to. Pvt. Chase is for us the guidon bearer. Let us all follow his lead and continue to strive to be worthy of his example of service and sacrifice to God, family and country."
Staff Sgt. Joshua Kaplan, one of Chase's drill sergeants, said Chase was an ideal Soldier in training who came to Basic Combat Training highly motivated and with the goal of becoming a role model for his five younger siblings.
"Sometimes instilling Army values can be hard, but when a Soldier comes from a family that already has values, the drill sergeants' job is easy," Kaplan said.
Pvt. Ryan Bremer said that during the six weeks they spent together in basic training, Chase has left a lasting impression on him.
"I feel like I've known Chase for years because of the impact he has made on my life in our time here," Bremer said. "Chase probably had no idea what he did not only for me, but the Outlaws (platoon) as a team. There were many times I was discouraged and wanted to quit, but I knew Chase would never let that happen."
The sentiment that Chase placed others before himself was shared by both Bremer and Pvt. Sharon Solderquist, who is in the same platoon.
"Something I think everyone will remember is how (Chase) was able to turn foot marches into something fun," Solderquist said, recounting a march during which Chase helped her catch up with the group. "He didn't just do that for me. He helped many in the same way, not allowing anyone to fall behind. He took the initiative to lend a helping hand even if it slowed him down."
For Bremer, though, the friendship he struck with Chase went beyond being in the same platoon. The two Soldiers discovered early on that they were from the same area in Maine and shared many common interests, Bremer said. He said they had made plans to spend time together at home after their training was completed.
"The one thing Chase talked about was the truck he wanted to buy when he got home and how it was going to be the biggest, baddest truck around," Bremer said. "I have full intentions of buying that truck; and Chase will be with me riding shotgun everywhere I go."
Chase, a native of Lewiston, Maine, died Feb. 20 from complications of pneumonia. He is survived by his mother, Rhonda Tilley, his father Sumner Chase, his stepfather Reginald Tilley, his stepmother Brenda Chase and seven siblings.