FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. -- Soldiers and staff from the Fort Campbell Warrior Transition Battalion recently gathered for a memorial garden rededication ceremony to remember a fallen battalion Soldier.
Hendersonville, Tennessee native, Sgt. Jeremy "Jay" Seals lost his battle with cancer Oct. 31, 2018. Each year, the battalion adds the names of Soldiers it's lost to a plaque in its memorial garden. Seals' image was also added to the battalion's Wall of Heroes, which serves as a reminder to battalion staff of the Soldiers lost and the family members left behind.
"There are long-term friendships that are built here, just like any other unit. I still keep in touch with a couple folks who have come through here…to make sure we're surviving and being healthy and doing good things. [Sgt. Seals'] philosophy was to do great things. If each of us do great things, we will be better people and better Soldiers," said Seals' former WTB first sergeant, Command Sgt. Maj. Steven Peters. Despite moving on to the 411th Hospital Center, Jacksonville, Florida, where he serves as command sergeant major, Peters made a point to attend the memorial garden rededication for Sgt. Seals and his family.
Seals' widow, Tori Seals and his sister, Holley Seals-Lizarraga, joined battalion staff in remembering Sgt. Seals. Before the rededication, the battalion staff put on a breakfast and welcomed family and friends of Seals. They remembered Sgt. Seals' kindness and his belief in doing good things to help others. Providing support and friendship for Soldiers and their families is an important aspect at the WTB.
"They were there as much for me as they were for him, and as a caregiver that is huge," said Tori Seals, who traveled from Texas to participate in the rededication.
"The WTB is phenomenal. They took care of him. They made sure he had exactly what he needed, when he needed it. That he could get to his appointments, even if I was sick. They also were phenomenal for me as the caregiver," said Tori Seals. "I left my career when we found out he had stage four stomach cancer to spend the remaining time with him and to take care of him. Any time I needed them, day or night, all I had to do was text, or pick-up the phone and they would be there."
The Army established Warrior Transition Battalions at major military treatment facilities to provide personalized support to wounded, ill and injured Soldiers who require at least six months of rehabilitative care and complex medical management. Each Soldier at the WTB has a care team with a primary care manager, a nurse case manager and a squad leader. This team helps to coordinate care for the Soldier with other clinical and non-clinical professionals. The battalion staff also work closely with families, who are an integral part of each Soldier's treatment plan.
Seals served in the Army as an information technology specialist with two tours within the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault); 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division -- "Strike Force" and 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade -- "Eagle Assault". His other units included the 39th Signal Battalion, 2nd Signal Brigade, Belgium and the Tennessee National Guard.