Fallen Nellis Airmen remembered during annual memorial dedication
By Airman 1st Class Jamie L. Nicley, Nellis Public Affairs
/ Published May 25, 2011
LAS VEGAS -- The Nevada Benefits Foundation and Gold Star Families honored four fallen Nellis Airmen during the 6th Annual Defending Freedom Memorial dedication ceremony at the Red Rock Canyon Visitors Center May 14.
Hosted annually, the event honors fallen servicemembers with ties to Nevada and provides a forum for the community to express its appreciation for this sacrifice. The Defending Freedom Memorial was initially dedicated in 2005 and is comprised of seven sandstones with the engraved names of Nevada's fallen servicemen and women.
This year, the names Nellis Airmen Senior Airman Michael Buras, Staff Sgt. David Smith, 1st Lt. Joel Gentz and Capt. David Wisniewski were added to the memorial. The names of three other Nevada servicemembers U.S. Army Spc. Brian Tabada, U.S. Army Sgt. Matthew Hennigan and U.S. Marines Sgt. Frank Zaehringer were also added to the memorial. All seven servicemembers were lost in Afghanistan during combat operations in 2010 and 2011.
The Defending Freedom Memorial is open to the public and provides a forum for the families of the fallen and the community to show solidarity and support. For more information on the memorial or annual dedication ceremony, visit www.defendingfreedom.org.