Please share any comments, stories, or memories. If you are a friend or family member of a fallen PCV and would like to contribute a picture, a story, or something different to a volunteer's individual page, please contact us.
Your comments will be reviewed (only to avoid spam) and posted as soon as possible.
Date: 19 Feb 2011
Gratitude for the life of Susan Davey who died in Liberia in January, 1970. Her compassion, intelligence and humour were only some of the qualities that she shared with the world.
Name: Steve Gardner
Date: 18 Feb 2011
Chad Nettesheim was one of the coolest dudes who ever walked the earth. He loved his friends. He was like the glue that kept all his friends together. Even before he left for the Peace Corp in South America he sent all his friends a letter making sure we were still all on the same page. He was an amazing leader. He was an amazing friend. I would like to think that if he were still around he would have the answer to all our questions about the state of things going down. Until we meet again in Heaven Chad I love you brother!
Name: Bill Trice
Date: 05 Dec 2010
I am very sorry for Lois and Harry's loss of their daughter….never got to meet her…she must have been a special person ..
Date: 29 Apr 2010
Joie- I will never forgive myself for not offically saying good-bye to you and not comforting your family. I can promise you that I will NEVER forget our times together as children. You were my best friend, sister, and rock. I miss you….
Name: Will McClain
Date: 18 Apr 2010
I was great friends with Matt Costa during freshman and sophomore years at Tulane University. I had come from a small town in north Texas and Matt taught me a lot about seeing people and the world in different ways. We lived on the same dorm floor freshman year and I recall hearing his guitar strumming anytime I walked the halls. Matt was full of ideas and he always acted on them. He was full of wit, humor, humility, compassion, intelligence and, most of all, love. I heard a Bob Dylan song tonight and it made me think to search for Matt on the Internet because I had lost touch with him after I transferred from Tulane back to Texas. I am heartbroken to learn of Matt's death, but I am not surprised to see that he has changed lives in such an extraordinary way. Matt performed at the cafe on Tulane's campus shortly before I moved home. His picture was in Tulane's newspaper and I had him sign it as a joke. Now it will be a prized possession! Long live Mo' 9!
Date: 10 Apr 2010
It's been over 10 years since Karen Phillips was brutally raped and murdered in Gabon and her killer never brought to justice. I knew Karen in the corporate world before she decided to make helping people her career and joined the Peace Corps. She was a beautiful human being and I will never forget her. Her memory will live forever in the hearts of everyone who knew her.
Date: 09 Apr 2010
Nancy Coutu- 9 years ago today – you were an incredible person. May your spirit and love for the world and everyone and everything in it, live on in others.
Name: Kristina Scholz
Date: 08 Mar 2010
Dear Fallen Peace Corps Memorial Project,
My name is Kristina Scholz and I am RPCV Kyrgyzstan 2006-2008. This week is the one year anniversary of Kate's death and I would like to inform you of a commemorative and inspiring youtube video in honour of my friend, and our friend, Kate. There is also a facebook group.
In loving memory of Kate Puzey…
Date: 01 Mar 2010
Natalie Waldinger … beautiful inside and out … a great heart … never, ever forgotten … with love … "Aunt" Suzanne
Name: Phil Maggard
Date: 27 Feb 2010
I am Phil Maggard. Named after my uncle Phil Maggard (obviously) who was killed in a plane crash in the Phillipines in 1963. I was born in 1965. He was one of the first few Peace Corps volunteers. Wish so much I could have met him.
Date: 20 Feb 2010
it's a cause to live for and one to die for. I'm joining the peace corps the second I graduate. My mother showed me this site to try to persuade me not to join but it only made me want to do it more
Name: Amber Toedtli
Date: 18 Feb 2010
Not a day goes by that I don't miss my brother Justin with all my heart. But after finding this website I know that Matt was a wonderful person too. I can see why Justin liked him so much. We have both lost so much but we are the lucky ones to have had them in our lives, even if it was for just a small amount of time.
Amber – Justin's Big Sister
Name: Brock Mullis
Date: 12 Feb 2010
Thank You for maintaining this site again. It has been years since I posted, but wanted to renew my appreciation for your efforts.
My years of service were 1980-82 in Honduras and in those years I count 20 Peace Corps Volunteer losses. Those of us who staged and flew off on our big adventure could not fathom this end. We were too full of ideas and excitement to worry about such things. One can say we were living in the true sense of the word.
My heart goes out to those who lost loved ones. We thought about you often…hoping you wouldn't worry and hoping we were making you proud of us.
Date: 07 Dec 2009
We all miss Blythe O'Sullivan's smile and laugh. All of our love to her family during this difficult anniversary and holiday season. It is hard to fathom it has been two years. I am always thinking of her selflessness and am constantly inspired to be better. These volunteers give up so much to try and make the world better… I hope I can carry on a tiny piece of the enormous work Blythe did.
Name: Teresa Bookwalter
Date: 22 Nov 2009
To the family of S0-Youn Kim, whom I taught in 9th grade English honors, I give my heartfelt condolences. To her older sister, Je-Houn, I particularly send prayers.
Both of you are remarkable young women who gave so much to Lowell High School in leadership positions, in contributions in the classroom and being a bright presence in the hallways.
Lowell High School
Date: 20 Nov 2009
I met Bill Nordmann while I was in training (N-173/B). I was at a low point where I really was not happy with the program. Bill, who had already been there a year, really helped me put things in perspective and taught me to find the humor in even the most outrageous of circumstances. This is a skill set I still use today. As I look at many of my now middle-aged peers (many of whom could never survive life without air-conditioning or TV) I realize that though Bill died way too early, he had truly LIVED more than most ever will. You are always in our hearts Bill. Thank you for your service to our Country.
Date: 14 Nov 2009
Debbie White PCV Togo. You are remembered and thought of often.
Name: Laurel Brown
Date: 11 Nov 2009
Thank you for this site! I didn't know about it until today, but I always thought there should be something like this.
We lost two volunteers in the time I was in Tanzania — Natalie Waldinger and Wyatt Pillsbury. Natalie was my closest friend in Tanzania, and I have missed that friendship for the past 9 years. All volunteer deaths are tragic and deserving of far more honor than they ever get.
Name: Susan Henderson
Date: 10 Nov 2009
What a wonderful idea. Karen Wald was a PC volunteer in Togo during my time there. I still remember how heartbroken we all were to find out she had died in a motor vehicle accident. She was such a sweet, giving person. Her family came from the US for the memorial service in Northern Togo, where she was a volunteer.
Date: 25 Aug 2009
I still miss you jenni.
Name: Richard (Tex) Sanders
Date: 09 Jun 2009
My heart goes out to the families of those whose brothers, sisters and friends made the ultimate sacrifice for the people they chose to serve.
Date: 16 Apr 2009
I served in the PC from 03-05. My heart goes out to each individual who has passed during their time of service. There is not greater sacrifice known to man.
Thank you for this memorial and hopefully, one day there will be a permanent memorial.
Name: Chris Raymaker
Date: 02 Apr 2009
Thank you all. Mark Raymaker was my older brother who was a PCV in Tanzania between 1966-68. In the summer of 1968, while on a field project in a remote region, he "went missing", while hunting and tracking a wounded animal. No human remains, equipment, tracks, evidence were ever recovered and if they were, they were not included in the official report.
A search followed his failure to return , but the official description of the search process, it's timing , operational conduct and results are questionable at the very best.
No plausible explanation was ever given as to the cause of death, although death very, very quickly became the presumptive description of a status more accurately described as "fate unknown".
40 years later, the mystery still remains as unclear as it was in July of 1968. I have no illusion that Mark Raymaker did not disappear at age 23 in Tanzania.
He was my brother and those who knew him best would not call him a hero. His service was a form of personal penance, his act of contrition in distant East Africa for sins unrequited and unresolved. I do not judge him and I understand his motivation. It does not matter to me. He haunts my dreams from time to time, but they are only dreams.
If you knew him or worked with him and were present during or after his disappearance, please either contact me or share your thoughts.
Thanks to all RPCV's, current PCV's and the families of those lost.
Date: 25 Mar 2009
My thoughts are with Kate's family and her fellow PCVs. I know how difficult it is to lose a fellow Peace Corps sister. When Blythe O'Sullivan from my group died it seemed like the whole world ended. It made me view my entire service differently. I am sure, Kate, like Blythe lived her life to the fullest, embracing every adventure and chasing every dream. We continue on in thier honor…
Date: 13 Mar 2009
I just received an email this morning from a friend telling me about the passing of a young female volunteer in Benin. Reading various news articles this morning it sounds as if she may have been killed. As a former volunteer and teacher who worked in roughly the same area as this young woman I can't begin to express how sad this news has made me. I am sad for this woman's unnecessary death. I am devastated for her family. And I can't imagine how scary this must be for the volunteers who are currently on the ground and for their families who are thousands of miles away. It is such a shame that this had to happen to someone who was just setting out to explore the world and open enough to want to really experience what life is like in a developing country. I will keep her in my thoughts and prayers, as well as her family and all volunteers. My time in Benin truly shaped the past 8 years of my life…and I have continued to work in Africa. I hope that some good can come from all of this and I am sure the people who got to know and live with this woman in Benin are as sad as any of us. Thanks to her for ultimately giving herself over to serve her country and Benin.
Name: Dennis Magnuson
Date: 05 Feb 2009
I was in Peru III (1963-65). Halfway through one of the fellows in Peru I (or II?) finished his stint in Peru and was then named an assistant in, I believe, Venezuela. Although I cannot at the moment recall his name, I do know that he was killed by Venezuelan police or military when he and some companions (don't recall if they were Venez nationals, other PC staff or whatever) drove a jeep through a check point in the area this vol was working. Much controversy re who was actually at fault, but the upshot is that he was killed. BTW, this was reported in TIME back in 1964 , I recall.
This was a tragic loss as this young man was a very savvy PC member, spoke Spanish very well, and was committed to carrying out JFK's hopes for the Americas.
I don't know the criteria for your FALLEN PCVs, but there should be a way to recognize him, too.
Dennis D. Magnuson
Date: 07 Jan 2009
Jesse Thyne, it has been nine years since that tragic day, but your love continues to reveal itself to me in surprising, magical ways every day. .
Name: Suzanne Gruendling
Date: 05 Jan 2009
Thank you for all the hard work on this website. My college friend Laura Stedman died in 1996 while serving for the Peace Corps. I still keep her letters from her two years in Swaziland. I would love to hear from anyone who knew Laura (contact the webmaster of this site and email will be forwarded).
Name: Mark Smith, RPCV, Philippines
Date: 02 Jan 2009
Shaun O'Brien — about 28-29 when he died, Cheyenne, Wyoming, in the north near Ilocos. Good egg. Great disposition, good looking, strappy Westerner, could party but not crazy. Got hit by a jeepney while riding on the back of a motorcycle near dusk and apparently died almost instantly, no helmet. I took a bus up and went to his services in late AM in Manila. Peace Corps/Philippines really started banning use of motorcycles for awhile. Believe it was in 1983
Charlie Turner — believe in his late 40s, He was a jack of all trades; mechanical/troubleshooter. Could have served anywhere. Had been in military. Sat with/near him from SF to Manila going over. He was around Cebu, a can-do-type of guy, and well thought of but believed opinionated. Liked drinking and smoking, but decent guy. Heard that he had passed out on his bed, and he was shot in the head while asleep. This was very near my end of service.
Name: Martha Brown Gould, Zaire 72-74
Date: 31 Dec 2008
I wanted to share some memories of Linda Fink, who died in January 1973. She was a TEFL teacher who was the roommate of a trainee from my group (math/science teachers), Elizabeth Reed. They were posted (with Ron and Ann Bachand) about 15 miles from my village in Bas-Zaire. I didn't really know Linda, but I will never forget the circumstances of her death.
We had been in country for a few months when Linda went missing and the PC Kinshasa people came to our village asking if we had seen her (we hadn't seen her since training). After a week, we learned that her sandals had been found by the nearby river (the students had been also sent out to look for her) and later some fishermen found the remains of her body, mauled by crocodiles. My friend, Elizabeth, said she had left a "suicidal" note.
My roommate Susan Poland and I went to the funeral services in the village Lemfu. I remember the hot sun, the singing of the students, and how stunned we all were, including the Zairians. They offered their sympathy. I have a vague memory of the placement/burial of the body, but I believe it was sent back to her home in West Virginia.
I appreciate this opportunity to share this about Linda. It shows the incredible mental and physical challenges that volunteers face. RIP Linda.
Name: joan o'sullivan
Date: 02 Dec 2008
Our sincere thanks to all of the PCV's who have shared their memories and kind words about our dear daughter Blythe who tragically died in Suriname on December 6, 2007. There is not a day that goes by that we don't think of her, her charming smile and willingness to always put herself second for the good of others. Her spirit lives on in so many of us and for that we will be forever grateful. The work that all of the volunteers perform is not truly understood or appreciated in the US. Efforts should be made to provide these exceptional individuals the recognition they deserve. Thanks to all former and current volunteers.
Name: Jonathan Krant
Date: 30 Sep 2008
I was reminded of my Peace Corps housemate, Chris Leucke, only recently, when rifling through boxes of letters we collected together in rural Liberia three decades ago. The images which follow are directed to him.
Images of your scraggly beard, our mixed-breed dog Rufus, travels to the bush with Moses to supervise the logging activities of your Dutch counterparts all came flooding back. Like clockwork, your swimming injury, neurologic damage and eventual death from Cushing's ulcers play before my eyes, decades after leaving the country to revise my own life goals, in part driven by the realization that you were prevented from realizing your own. Although I trained in pediatrics, I did not become director of the World Health Organization (I did leave Hopkins one summer to study Rift Valley Fever infection in Egypt), but steered into adult medicine and rheumatology, becoming a clinician and investigator (which we had discussed over palm wine under tin roofs, in the rain). The Africa bug is back, not that it ever left, and I am now planning on returning to East Africa, teaching basic immunology and management of arthritis to nurse practitioners, PA's and newly-minted MDs who are carrying
out the mandates of their respective sub-saharan governments. I dedicate my return to you, Chris, for your encouragement and friendship, insisting on the highest level of scholarship to achieve what for me, has become a dream. Though gone, you have never left, and I know you would treasure my young sons who share the same curiousity and attraction to the exotic that we did, when we were their age. Cheers to you Chris!
Name: Magaba Ugab
Date: 23 Sep 2008
The family of Blythe Ann O'Sullivan,
Please know that we are thinking of you during this holiday season and that our thoughts and prayers are with you and Blythe Ann, may she rest in Peace
Date: 18 Aug 2008
Greetings too all friends and family of those who lost their vivacious and bright spirited loved ones during Peace Corps. I have read Blind Night and American Taboo, which focuses on Deb Gardener's death and have been praying for those who had to be so saddened by the loss of Debbie's beautiful spirit. I have about 1 month until I depart for Madagascar to serve myself and will take bits of her wild and wonderful memory with me. God's Peace.
Name: Steven Varner, Kenya 87-89
Date: 09 Aug 2008
On a recent cross country road trip I encountered countless memorials to those who fell in various wars. There were also memorials to veterans of foreign wars. In fact the road I was driving on, old US 80, was dedicated to Korean veterans. However, no one seems to remember the people who served our nation in the name of peace. All those who served their country in the US Peace Corps deserve recognition, and those who fell at their posts especially deserve a memorial.
Date: 08 Aug 2008
I was in the Peace Corps with Jeremy. He was a fabulous human being. I could not bring myself to go to his memorial in Maseru when his parents were there because I did not want to admit that he was gone. Even now I prefer to treat it as a fiction. Alma, I am so sorry. The hurt for you is unfathomable, but I'm writing now to let you know that another person remembers and loves him.
.Name: Lynne Kraskouskas
Date: 24 Jul 2008
I am honored to have known Karen Phillips for the very brief time that I did. Her death was tragic and PC Gabon never fully recovered from it. Personally, I have recently learned the heartbreak and anguish of losing a child and I extend my deepest sympathies to her family and friends.
Date: 24 Jul 2008
hello, does anyone have any more information on Roseanne Provini who was killed in a hit and run incident in Tegucigalpa, Honduras in 1976? Did anyobne know her? Thanks.
Name: Chris Davis, Kenya, '75-'77
Date: 11 Jul 2008
I was H. Benjamin Gamber's roommate in Swahili training in Mombasa when he drowned tide-pooling on the Indian Ocean reef on Christmas Eve 1975. If memory serves, he was the son of missionaries from North Carolina who were serving in Angola but rather than come to Africa with his church, Ben joined the Peace Corps because, as he once put it, the problems in Africa had gotten way beyond religion's power to solve. He told me his girlfriend was working with their church in South Africa at the time. He had originally been posted to Ethiopia a few months earlier but had been evacuated in the wake of Marxist coup and the disappearance of Emperor Haile Selassie that September. He joined our group in December midway through language training, studied hard to catch up, and easily learned Swahili, better than most of us. He was a big believer in journals and mimeographed form letters. In the few short weeks we shared a room, I got to know him as well as anyone of us did. He was a decent, Christian sort of guy, sure of himself without being overly confidant. He once pulled angered hotel staff off a thief they had caught and were in the process of beating (probably to death). He guarded the thief until police arrived. He likely saved the guy's life.
Finding Ben's body on the reef after he'd been missing for 24 hours was one of the saddest things imaginable and rarely does a day go by that I don't think of him.
Name: janice mulholland
Date: 22 Jun 2008
Thank you David Mulholland is my husbands brother. Your website keeps his memory going.
Date: 14 May 2008
Happy Birthday, John, on what should be your 65th. You will never be forgotten.
Name: Dennis O'Neill
Date: Wednesday, April 23, 2008
I am so pleased that someone cared enough to memorialize those who died while in Peace Corps. There were life threatening risks that we took when we went into third-world countries. And few have ever spoken about the courage that it took to be dropped off in some islolated village or island. Those that died in the service of their country while in the Peace Corps deserve a memorial.
I would like to point out that there was a volunteer or staff member who died in the Marshal Islands in either 1967 or 1968. I handled the radio communications between Saipan and Majoro as efforts to recover his body were underway. I do not recall the name, but I clearly remember the death and the circumstances of that death. I did not see on your memorial list any deaths in Micronesia in either 1967 or 1968. I regret that I can not recall the man's name. I do recall some of us were upset in the way Peace Corps shipped his body home before the family was notified. Perhaps there is yet away to find out who this man was and add his name to the list. Perhaps there will be someone out there who can recall better than I what happened and to whom.
Returned Peace Corps Volunteer ( 1966-1968 )
Date: 01 May 2008
i just found out about justin. i first met justin on one of my bicycle trips. i can't remember the year, but myself, todd, & aryon was touring the oregon coast. justin helped me with a flat tire. justin rode with us for four days. during this time we got to know each other. when we parted ways we traded e-mails. each year i would write to see if he wanted to go with us on our next trip. unfortunately, justin was unable to go. justin seemed to have it together more so than most people his age. i know i didn't when i was his age (54) please pass on to his parents our condolances.
scott from kentucky
Name: Ria O'Brien
Date: 22 Apr 2008
Having a site like this is a real inspiration. I pray for the souls of all my PCV colleagues that have fallen and especially for Justin Brady who I knew before leaving Mali. It pains me to know that such a wonderful person cannot remain with us to inspire us, make us laugh, and make us sing. I will always remember him.
Name: Robert Heil
Date: 04 Apr 2008
I'm a RPCV, Mali 96-98 and had no idea two vols died in 2006. Sad story.
It can be very difficult living in the world of "Where There is No Doctor", dangerous as well.
I guess they'll forever be PCV's.
Name: Shayna acord
Date: 31 Mar 2008
Hi my name is Shayna. I would like personally like to thank every single person who fights for peace and I am even more grateful for those who lost their lives by saving or protecting the lives of those who need that helping hand. It's these people that will never forget the things that you have done or lost to help make their lives that much better.
Name: John Turnbull
Date: 27 Mar 2008
To all of those who have lost loved ones during PC service, I wanted to mention that I am currently working on a small bronze medallion which might be affixed to the deceased PCV's headstone, or otherwise placed at the gravesite, which would identify the person as having served. The idea came from what has been done in the past by organizations of military veterans, for their deceased members. I would like to offer these free of charge to any next-of-kin. A number of people have already offered financial help, and so this message is NOT a request for that. BUT, I did want the effort to be hands-on, in keeping with the nature of PC service. From the hands of fellow RPCVs. For those management tasks, I can use some help. I am now working on a design, and wonder if the founders of this site might consider offering their logo, or an adaption of it, as the design. Any ideas, designwise or other, will be most welcome.
John Turnbull Santa Fe, New Mexico (Ghana and Nyasaland/Malawi '63, '64, '65)
Name: Paul Ziebert
Date: 20 Mar 2008
I knew Justin and although we were not the greatest friends, I admired him. He never seemed to have a bad thing to say about anyone and his energy and drive were endless. I'm thankful that the world has people like him in it. I've thought about his passing often and it makes me sad to think he did not get the chance to realize his full potential. Those of us that knew him were truly blessed.
Name: Pam Cameron
Date: 16 Mar 2008
To Natalie GP Family,
I am Matt Costa's mother. Thank you for the kind things you said around his birthday last September. Please tell me how you knew Matt. You are right – he was so many things – compassionate, smart, funny, competitive, but most of all he was the best son any mother could have wanted. I miss him every single day. It is nice to know others remember him too.
Name: Kim Sundermeyer
Date: 07 Mar 2008
I just want to clarify that Brian Edens may not have been "non-compliant" with his antimalarial medicines.
I had many malarial episodes during my stay in Senegal. I took my chloroquine faithfully 500mg 1x per week at first. Then 250mg 2x per week when I kept getting malaria. If I stayed in Senegal any longer, I think I would have taken chloroquine 100mg per day or tried another anti malarial since the malarial parasite was becoming immune to chloroquine.
I had a near fatal malarial attack that started on the Friday after Thanksgiving 1982. I was too tired or sick to get out of bed Friday night when the malaria started. By Saturday morning I had the worst case of malaria I had ever had. I had barely enough energy to sit for a couple seconds. I took 1000mg of choroquine and vomited it up. A little later I tried to take 1000mg chloroquine and vomited it up again. I recalled that Brian had passed away about a year before from malaria and thought that I might die if I couldn't keep my choroquine down. Fortunately, I thought about the paregoric that we had in the village pharmacy. I had people to help me to stay alive. Brian died alone.
Name: Kim Sundermeyer
Date: 07 Mar 2008
I would like to say that I met Brian Edens about 6 months before he died in Senegal. We met in Dakar, probably at the Peace Corps office. We walked into the Dakar together and shared a couple beers together while sitting at a table right on a street. We shared some stories about our villages. I remember that he had a great heart and really wanted to help the people in his village. I never saw him again.
About 6 months after Brian died of malaria, I met Brian's brother. He had come to Senegal to see the country where his brother had passed away. We were wondering together how Brian had died alone in the Peace Corps rest house in Louga.
Brian may have had a very serious case of malaria similar to one I had about 1 year after Brian passed away. I was taking my chloroquine twice a week as a prophilactic measure. Fortunately, I was in my village with some people to care for me. (I was not alone as Brian was when malaria decided to attack him.) I had a serious malarial crisis. I couldn't keep my chloroquine down. Each time I took it, I vomited it back up. In my delerium, I remembered that Brian had died from malaria. I thought that I might die from malaria like Brian had.
Somehow I thought about the paregoric that we sold in our village pharmacy. I asked the chief of the village to send me Keba Ndao the man who was trained to work in our village pharmacy. He brought me the paregoric. My chloroquine stayed down and I survived my malarial crisis. I think that knowing that Brian had died of malaria had saved my life.
Date: 29 Jan 2008
I went to High School (Lakes, Lakewood, WA) with Debbie Gardner. She was also so energetic and positive. She smiled that face wide smile of hers and you couldn't help but smile yourself. Although, I didn't know her very well, she was a very nice and friendly person. This story takes me back, but it always makes me sad for what Debbie could have been and for what she could have contributed to the people of Tonga had she been able to.
Name: Nelson Perkins
Date: 29 Dec 2007
John Beckner was a quite gifted student, some years my junior back at KY Wesleyan College in the 1960's.
I served in Liberia (1964-66) but had a brief twenty-day emergency leave while my father in Owensboro, KY, was recovering from a heart attack.
When I visited the dorm where he was rooming, I had no idea he would join the Peace Corps later.
When I heard he drowned swimming off the coast of Malaysia, I called his long-time friend since his freshman days.
Then I called his parents. I expressed my condolences. His father told me not to feel any guilt. John was doing something he loved.
Name: Mike DeFranco
Date: 13 Dec 2007
To the family of Blythe Ann O'Sullivan,
Please know that we are thinking of you during this holiday season and that our thoughts and prayers are with you and Blythe Ann, may she rest in Peace.
Peace Corps Guatemala 2001 – 2004
Name: Maryanne Ashton
Date: 09 Dec 2007
Very nice memorial. My brother was Thomas Ashton, fallen peace corps volunteer died 1966
Name: Joe Endsley
Date: 06 Nov 2007
I only knew Jeremy Rolfs briefly. We had a class together at MTSU for a semester. However, it was long enough for me to know that this was a man who was going to make an impact. I was so sure of this, in fact, that 18 years later, I not only remembered the name, but took the time to search the internet to see if I could find out what became of him. It's clear from the comments that I was right. He did make an impact.
Oak Ridge, TN
Wow, some of the bolts of lightning that come at you when searching the Internet! I stumbled across the web site this evening.
Janis Hyatt was my friend. We met in Harper's Ferry, West Virginia in May 1980. We went on to Swaziland a month later for training, then on to our assignments. She was one of the brightest, sweetest people I've ever known. Chatting with her I felt like I'd known her forever, even though I only just met her.
I've got to find pictures that have with Janis in them. One is at a party at the training center and another picture in front of Swaziburger. She was a beautiful and delightful young woman.
When she died, one of her great friends, Mark, came down to my place in Mahamba to bring the news (so I didn't read about it in the paper). I remember when Mark walked up on a chilly day that I was very happy to see him (I didn't get many visitors down there). But soon he told me and my friend Jim that Janis was killed in an accident. All these 26 years later I remember feeling the air go out of me. I often thought of her over the years, and hoped she didn't feel scared and lonely at the end.
What a shinning light of a person! Thanks for posting the remembrance of her.
Name: Barney Caton
Date: 19 Oct 2007
Bill Nordmann was my great friend and fellow PCV. I was lucky to have him posted near me in Surkhet for more than a year before I left. I have many great memories of Bill, including listening to him sing Shawn Colvin tunes, hanging out for hours (literally) in the hammock in his dhera, dancing in front of his house to the B-52s, interminable bus rides, sharing stories, taking him to my village so my aamaa could include him in baai tika, and both of us playing with the Pratt's kids–especially holding little William up on the wall and threatening to leave him there. I miss him and think of him often.
Name: Rose Saunders
Date: 10 Oct 2007
Just looking for Nancy and Polly Peiropan whom I was close to in the 70's in Ponape while their parents were in the Peace Core. We were all very good friends in our teens and went to PICS high school.
My contact information is in the Cayman Islands:
PO Box 293 KY1-1104
George Town Grand Cayman
Cayman Islands BWI
Mobile: 1-345-925-0966 (primary contact phone#)
Name: Denise Thompson
Date: 05 Oct 2007
Hi, I'm Nancy's sister, thank you for honoring her! I was wondering if your webmaster could add our new link to her information: www.aboutnancy.com. We are selling our new book on her and taking donations
Name: Natalie GP family
Date: 24 Sep 2007
Mathew Costa, I am sorry I missed your birthday, and I wanted to stop by and tell you that you are an inspiration to many. I can tell by the things that your mom has told us that you were a very compassionate person who cared deeply for others. I am sorry that we have lost such an honorable young man in you. Please bring your mom some peace and send her lots of signs and angel kisses. She misses you so much and always will til she is able to see you again.
Name: Rachel – Kriss's mum
Date: 23 Sep 2007
Hi Matt, I just wanted to stop by and say "hi"
your mum loves and misses you so much. Please keep visiting her and giving her angel hus and kisses.
Name: Constantine Sboukis
Date: 11 Sep 2007
I went to grade school for 8 years with Kathryn MacGillivary. She was a very good friend that I lost touch with after we went to high school. I was shocked when I just learned that she drowned while serving in the Peace Corps. She had a wonderful sense of humor and a heart of Gold and I will always remember the great times we had together while growing up.
Name: Linda Mayes
Pete (Peter Wolfe) was a wonderful friend to my husband Stu. Pete lived with us in the cabin at Prickett Dam while he worked at AllWood in Baraga MI before he joined the Peace Corps. I have a photo of him during our days at Michigan Tech, with a big grin on his face and raising his glass in a toast "to life, to life, ….and if our good fortune never comes, here's to whatever comes…" that was Pete.
Date: 03 Jul 2007
Yesterday night I received in the mail The Gabon Letter – published by RPCVs. There was a small news piece about plans for a memorial fund to remember Karen Phillips at her alma mater Villanova University. Karen was a volunteer murdered in Oyem Gabon in 1998. The article really hit home since I graduated from Villanova and had served in Gabon from '89-91.
For anyone interested in making a donation, the article lists a link at https://novasis.villanova.edu/pls/bannerprd/hvakapmt.P_CreditCardPayment .At the bottom of the online gift form there is box for "Gift Type:Please Select Your Donation Designation". There you should write "Karen Phillips Memorial". The first $1,000 will used to place a bench with a plaque and additional funds will be used for scholarship.My thought is that even a small donation will help me keep in my consciousness how lucky I am to have an R before PCV and to remind others the sacrafice that Karen and her family have made for poor Africans.
Name: Zella Falcon Cook
Date: 05 Jun 2007
This is a wonderful idea. I hope that many people visit this site. I know how much my Peace Corps experience has enhanced my life even though it's been over 30 years ago. I continue to be crazy in love with my VSO husband (Stephen Cook) and recently our 24 year old son has been considering joining. My students and I continue to do a relief project for 10 students in Sierra Leone that were victims of the war. I'm just so grateful for the whole experience.
Date: 30 May 2007
I am currently reading the book American Taboo and ran across this web page.
What a wonderful thing to do for those young men and women who did not return from their Peace Corps assignments. Thank you for your efforts.
Name: Carolyn Segermark Llewellyn
Date: 12 May 2007
10 years ago today, an APCD came to tell me that Jeremiah had died in a car accident. I remember lacing up my boots as she spoke, hearing the words but not wanting to process them.
Every memory I have of Jeremiah makes me smile and laugh, and I know this is the same for countless others who were in Peace Corps Niger at that time, as well as so many Nigeriennes.
Jeremiah came to the village where I lived, Falki Karama, for one day. Though he did not speak the language, he succeeded in making everyone laugh and smile.
The people of Falki Karama mourned with me when they heard the news.
Every mother's day I remember hearing Jeremiah talk to his mom the night before his death, asking her not to embarrass him when he called his girlfriend's mother, and saying goodbye with "Happy Mother's Day, Mom. I love you."
I wasn't one of Jeremiah's closest friends in Peace Corps, but I did get to work with him a lot on CSB. He encouraged me, as the only she-CSB volunteer, and also kept me from taking myself too seriously.
A valuable combination.I know that so many lives have been touched by Moussa, and he continues to make people smile with the memories. A wonderful legacy.
Name: Carrie Boettcher
Date: 19 Apr 2007
My thoughts and prayers are with you and yours.
Name: Shawn Davie
Date: 31 Mar 2007
I just got in from jogging and realized that today is ten years since Jeremy died.
He and I philosophized many times about what happens when you die…
I actually just "talked" to him for the first time I can remember since then.
I could really use some of that damn industry that he was so imbued with. If there is any still out here floating around, I could use some.
Jeremy was the most un-lazy person I have ever known. I still love ya Jer.. of course
Date: 25 Feb 2007
I like to thank my PCV Teacher Polly Pieropan of Ashville, Ma who served on Kapingamarangi, Pohnpei from 1979-1980.
Thank you so much for all that you sacrificed for us. I would also like to extend my sincere gratitude to all the PCV present and past.
Name: Taylor Murray
Date: 14 Feb 2007
This a great memorial to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in their selfless service to the United States of America.
Fortunately, no PCV has passed away while serving in Mongolia. I was a m14 from 2003-2006.
The stories make me sad, but I am happy there is a forum for them to be told.
Name: Kathy Horan Mahoney
Date: 12 Jan 2007
What a terrific memorial to these beautiful young people that we have lost! They made the ultimate sacrifice for their dreams.
We will always remember them and celebrate their lives by using their example to be better people ourselves. Thank you for putting this together.
Date: 10 Jan 2007
could you please help me providing with the email address of a peace corps volunteer David Emory who was in nepal during early 1980s. i hope to get help from you.
Name: Andres Vaart
Date: 25 Jul 2006
This is a nice site to see. For many years I have wondered about a friend, Sandra Lee Taplin, of college days in the 1960s who joined (or so I understood) the Peace Corps as I marched off to war in southeast Asia. I went through combat and lived on. I was told she went to El Salvador, took ill, and died before reaching medical help (perhaps in 1968). I don't see her name here, however, giving me pause about the story, which I only have known second hand. Perhaps it is familiar to someone in this project.
In any case, for all the memorials that exist to those who went to war, it is long-overdue for one honoring those who took on another urgent cause.
Name: Nancy Bird Pecor
Date: 15 Jun 2006
I remember Bethanne Bahler 1974 well. She was my friend encourager and roommate at the time of her death. Beth cared deeply for all those around her. She knew how to enjoy life and help others find joy in it also. With-in weeks of her arrival to the Peace Corp group in Jamaica 1973 her reputation for her ability to make friends reached me in the middle of the island. I was anxious to meet her and when I did we formed a unique bond. We made plans for her second year in service and I extended my commitment so that together we could help meet the needs of children in Kingston, Jamaica. Unfortunately she drown in May of 1974. We never know when the plans that we make will be changed, but Beth's love for life and faith in God and dedication to the church helped to carry many of us through that difficult time. The Jamaican friends that Beth had made became a support system as we drew closer together as a result of her death. Although it has been more than 30 years Beth's life is still remembered and her impact was felt by many.
Date: 08 Jun 2006
I was part of the PC Nicaragua staff, and was searching online for PC news. I've always felt that after working with such great people, staff and Volunteers, PC never leaves your heart.
In my search I found this wonderful site, that brought a lot of sadness, even though I never knew any of the PCVs that are in this site, I deeply feel for them, their family and friends.
There haven't been any fallen PCVs in Nicaragua (I am grateful to God of this), and each and everyone of them are always in my prayers, to be kept safe.
Thanks PCVs for all the amazing work you do around the world.
Name: Chris Banner
Date: 22 May 2006
Jim Gregory's story of my brother's, Alan's, death is not as I remember hearing it from my parents. Alan was diving for fish near where the reef drops off to great depths. His girlfriend, Robin Mesta, also a PCV, was on the surface, watching him as he pursued a fish near the bottom, when a large shark came out of nowhere and bit off his head. His body floated up to the surface, where the shark thrashed around, presumably eating the rest of him, before it headed back out to sea. Robin called to the people in the boat, which was some distance away, but by the time they got to the scene, nothing was left to be found. Even so, as Gregory says, they searched diligently for traces of him. My parents, in Hawaii, got a phone call from PC headquarters in Washington, D.C., at about 5 a.m. local time, telling them of what had happened. My father said there was no point in searching further for the body and they should call the search off. He remarked that he did not know what he would have done with what was left if they had found something. My, our, parents, A. H. and D.M. Banner, were marine biologists at the University of Hawaii, and did their field work by diving in unfamiliar waters around the tropics. It was couple of years after Alan's death before they could begin to feel comfortable doing their work. For years afterwards, anytime the phone rang early in the morning, it would call back memories and make them wonder what had happened this time. Usually, though, it was wrong number. Robin was from downstate Ohio, I think, and my mother used to visit her every year or two afterwards when she went on her vacation trips on the mainland. I never met her or had correspondence with her and have no idea of what became of her. I must say that it was a horrible scene that imprinted itself on her mind that day, and I sometimes wonder whether it still bothers her, more than thirty years later. My daughter, Sara, was in the Peace Corps in Nicaragua for two years, and I think it is a good thing and I recommend it to anyone. I honor her for what she did. What happened to Alan was a freak accident which nobody could have predicted or prevented. When my daughter was in service, the Corps was very protective of its people, and I think it is as safe an experience as one can have in foreign work.
Name: Beth, Togo 87-89
Date: 22 Mar 2006
In rememberance of my friend Scott Glotfelty who died in Togo 18 years ago tomorrow, still laughing in my memories…
Name: Libertus V. Mangdou
Date: 19 Mar 2006
This is a superb page. The fallen servers of PEACE shall not be forgotten. I went to the Outer Islands High School for 6 years (6-12) and I had some of the best PCV teachers in the whole Micronesia.
I had the late Alison Fairley, Mike Lemont, Jimmy and Dianna Ellis, Jack Delman, Reid Nakamura. Mary Peterson, Rod Boling, Connie Bird, Susan Snyder, Susan Porter and a few others. To those that have fallen and passed on… I wish to thank you from the bottom of my heart. God Bless you wherever you may be.
A few years after Graduation, I felt that I should give something back to the US Government. I owe it something so I joined the United States Navy and went to the Gulf in 1991 during Desert Storm. Eight years later, I came back home to help my parents, but I had been happy to give something back.
Again I wish to thank all the Peace Corps who helped taught me and encouraged me to make a difference in my small island community.
Thank you all for an excellent site.
Name: Mary Chapman
Date: 13 Mar 2006
Bill Nordmann (d. 7/31/92, Nepal) was one of the finest persons I'd had the privilege to know. Funny, smart, personable, talented – was it any wonder that all who knew him, loved him? I remember the day our friend called to give me the news; the bottom fell out of my world that day. It wasn't fair that such a brilliant young man, a gracious man who had touched so many lives and had so much promise, was snatched away in the prime of his life. But he was doing what he was called to do, and the people of Nepal were blessed by having him there. Bill was my dear, dear friend, and I still miss him. We all do.
Date: 17 Feb 2006
Rest in peace, Jeremy Rolfs. Thank you for being my friend.
Name: Karen Blodgett
Date: 03 Feb 2006
Jeremy Rolfs was a proficient photograher. I would love to see his photographs on the web.
Name: Clayton Bailey
Date: 29 Jan 2006
Regarding Bethanne Bahler 1974
We were in contact as member of the Hopefield Church of Christ.
All were greatly touched by her loss, and thank God for the opportunity to have been touched by her love and selfless service.
Date: 15 Nov 2005
This is a wonderful effort.
Name: Jennifer Bock
Date: 05 Nov 2005
I accidentally stumbled across this site, and I am so thrilled!
When my Uncle Bobby (Robert J Bock) died in 1998, I was crushed but also very proud that he died a hero, especially my hero. He had a simple funeral in a small funeral home. While there is nothing wrong with that, I wanted parades in the streets, flags, a drummer playing taps, fireworks, a library named after him – because he was that important to me. The thought of a permanent, physical memorial delights me – these selfless volunteers will finally get the "big deal" that they all truly deserve.
Name: Kris Petersen
Date: 04 Nov 2005
This is a great idea…
Name: Fordson Kafweku
Date: 23 Aug 2005
I was introduced to the FPCV website by Linda, mother to one of the great FPCVs Elizabeth Bowers who passed away March 6th, 2002. What i have read has touched my heart and given a me a different understanding of how great these young men and women are. Elizabeth's life though short was well spent and the memories of her will linger on. Reading the "Celebration of light" and the news on the web soon after her death, I could not beleive that on that fateful day her death was as a result of her not wearing the helmet because it was "another sign of economic chasm between those around her – the haves and the have-nots! What a cost of unselfishness it is!To quote Berkeley Williamson, her best friend's words "she always was very sensitive to those around her" This is incredible. As a Zambian and Lunda who comes from Mwiniluga, this remote place of Zambia were Elizabeth spent her last days, I feel honored and indebted to her. Thank you Linda for carrying the light of your daughter Beth. Its the best you have done for her. Keep on celebrating the light of your daughter through the Elizabeth Bowers Memorial Fund.Thank you Linda,Gerry and Jenny Bowers, am proud of you all.
Name: Jerome Karl Person
Date: 19 Aug 2005
May their souls rest in peace.
Date: 02 Aug 2005
I served in Honduras in the seventies and was in country when Bob Warren was killed in an automobile accident. I remember the massive outpouring of love and sadness among the Peace Corps community, and the sympathy of so many Hondurans. I lived and worked in another part of the country, but for weeks after Bob's death, almost every Honduran I met expressed their grief at his loss. I would like to let all the friends and families of fallen PCVs that their loved one is remembered and appreciated still. I was proud to have known Bob Warren, and am very proud of my Peace Corps service. Thank you and God bless.
Name: Mark B. Roath
Date: 30 Jul 2005
I served in the Peace Corps in Costa Rica, Central America from 1973 to 1975. Upon completion of my service, I went to Ohio University in late August 1975. At the University, I worked as a Resident Director in a Latin American Residential Dorm. One of my Resident Assistants was Ms. Francis Gavit. Ms. Gavit was a recently returned PCV from Honduras. She was a wonderful person. In October 1975, Ms. Gavit passed away from a disease that she contracted as a PCV in that country. As I recollect, Ms. Gavit was from Ohio. In reviewing the registry of fallen PCVs, Ms. Gavit is not listed; however, she should be shown as a fallen peace corps volunteer. If you would like to contact me about her, I would welcome the opportunity to see that the record is corrected.
Name: Rosemary Pillsbury
Date: 22 Jun 2005
Thank you so much for this memorial to my son Wyatt and the others who have died while trying to make the world a better place. When my husband and I rode to Boston from central Maine in the hearse to meet Wyatt's coffin after an indescribably painful week of pain and disbelief, we found no honors accorded his homecoming. We have since visited the Peace Corps headquarters and the memorial there and requested some changes, which were greeted very respectfully by Gaddi Vassquez. Mykell Winterowd will always be among our dearest friends for her grief counseling. This site is a place where we, whose lives have become bittersweet, can share our pain, our pride, our healing and our hope. Thank you.
Date: 22 Jun 2005
Hi Chris – I served in the same group as Jenni. She was a great person. I still think about her too. Odd how I haven't checked this site for about a year and then to see your recent message. We had a very nice ceremony after Jenni's death at the house of our medical officer in Lilongwe. Folks from our group read bits of letters from Mrs. Rose and memories of others, lots of flowers, and some great music. Her death broke all our hearts. I too think about her a lot, more and more lately as people in our group scatter across the states and move on with our lives. We never forgot her. I believe there was a memorail tree planted in her honor at a park in Chicago? I remember a letter from her mom to this effect. I recently came across pictures of her when we all were in training together, they are so great to have. Best to you.
Name: Martin Haber
Date: 30 May 2005
Dear Friends, These are true heroes, in the deepest sense of the word. Thank you for helping keep a sacred place in our collective memories for them- they are what Memorial Day should be about: the call to "wage Peace"!!! Yours, Martin
Date: 30 May 2005
I think about Jenni Rose often. Sometimes I try to search for photos or stories about her on the internet. through google… I was surprised not to find very much. I do miss her very much. She fell off a truck while in Africa and died. I went to her funeral and I wish I would have spoken. I was her boyfriend for a few years during her college years. I do miss the girl. Sometimes I think she can hear me… sometimes I don't know. I have been to her grave once since I threw a handful of dirt onto her lowered casket. It didn't even hit me until months later that she was gone. She had already been away for a while in Malawi (SP?)… working on AIDS awareness and prevention and more. She was a wonderful woman, and I remember looking forward to her homecoming and talking to a friend in New York City that I ran into by some coincidence. He said "you mean you don't know?" and then he told me that she had died a few days earlier…
I still have a spot for her in my heart. I thought maybe someday we would marry – someday after she returned and decided that I was the one for her. She told her friend (in the peace Corps) that she would always love me. I will always love her as well. she is not forgotten… and she never will be. there were pictures of her and i up at her funeral and i got so choked up that i did not even know what to do. i am engaged to be married now, and i love my fiance… but i will always have a place in my heart for jenni. i can still hear her laughter, see her smile, feel her kiss, and the touch of her hand. she was a wonderful woman. she was a beautiful woman. she would have made someone a lucky man, husband, and father… i am lucky to have met her at school in champaign, and to have been able to share an important and big part of my life with her. i think i will go to visit her soon. the last time i did. i spoke with her and told her about my life. i told her that i missed her. when she died, i remember thinking sometimes that i couldn't wait to tell her something (still thinking she was in Africa and coming home soon) and i would forget that she had died and i had been to her funeral… it was difficult. i used to write emails to her to let her know how i was, and in the rare instances that she got to use a computer – she would tell me how things were for her. i read and received an email from her only a few days before her death… she was excited to see a convenience store and chips in bags (doritos i think) because she had not seen anything like it in a long time. she was looking forward to spending some time in a city for a week or a couple of weeks… civilization she said… it was exciting… i still wanted to reply to her – even after i knew she was dead… thanks for this… I think about you often Jennifer Leah Rose with a heart full of love for you still. you are an important piece of me. i miss you and your laughter… rest in peace lovely… chris
Name: Todd Le
Date: 02 May 2005
I just happened to find the site by accident. I was with Thomas Barakatt the night he died 11 years ago in W. Samoa. Every year, around early May, I still think about Thomas, about what happened that night, what he said about his family, and what a wonderful thing to know him, even just for a short time.
Name: Bob Satin
Date: 27 Apr 2005
Gareth Simmons and Bob Zeck were among the 125 outstanding PCVs who lived and worked with the Dominican people during the difficult days of the 1965 uprising to restore democratic elected government to the Dominican Repubic. All 125 PCVs and Staff were heroes. Nurse PCVs working in hospitals without power or medical supplies. Rural and urban development PCVs helping to distribute needed food. All the PCVs and Staff by staying at their work in the Barrios, the schools and on the farms were sending a powerful message that we cared and were there to help them restore their democratic institutions. Gareth and Bob gave their lives in service to the Dominican and American people.
Name: Peter Roth
I was a volunteer in Guatemala in 1983 –Peter came in the group after mine. I left in August 83 when the political violence and lawlessness reached a frenzy and a golpe de estado. It was a hard scary place to be even though Peace Corps had assured me when I joined that it was safe. I could tell many strange tales of how the violent world was growling all
around us. I knew Peter, though not well. I remember arguing with him one night over beers (about politics and economics, in a friendly and collegial way) and I was struck by the force of his personality and the strength of his commitment to what he was setting out to do. I also remember (by this time I had moved on and was in South America) how his death affected me and how the local official "response" shocked me but did not surprise me. "Life is cheap in Guat," it told me.
I never knew til today what the outcome was. What a great brother to pursue the truth so relentlessly–like Peter I'd guess.
Name: Marlin L. Harrison
Date: 17 Apr 2005
Thank you for such a thoughtful and needed memorial. Let me know if I can help in any way.
Name: Maggie McQuaid
Date: 25 Mar 2005
I served in Honduras in the seventies and was in country when Bob Warren was killed in an automobile accident. I remember the massive outpouring of love and sadness among the Peace Corps community, and the sympathy of so many Hondurans. I lived and worked in another part of the country, but for weeks after Bob's death, almost every Honduran I met expressed their grief at his loss. I would like to let all the friends and families of fallen PCVs that their loved one is remembered and appreciated still. I was proud to have known Bob Warren, and am very proud of my Peace Corps service. Thank you and God bless.
Name: Leslie Boby
Date: 23 Mar 2005
It's nice to see our fallen colleagues being honored, keep up the good work!
Date: 16 Mar 2005
Deborah Gardner was my Biology teacher in 1976. Thank you for the information about her. It broke our heart when she was taken away from us so suddenly.
Date: 02 Feb 2005
'We He Left You Behind' reminds me of a death. Gloey Wiseman served in Bolivia and died in October, 1991. I think that PC left this person and believe that DEA, to this day, is responsible. I went in right after this and also was involved in Operation Green Ice. I believe that what was done to her reputation by Peace Corps and the Director's comments simply prove this was a DEA failure. The officers I met were professional, but I managed not to have a similar problem. I believe that this volunteer is why I am still alive. Ames was not worth this person's life or reputation. Regards, RPCV Central America
Name: Patricia Bundshuh-Dixon
Date: 29 Dec 2004
Thank you so much for creating this wonderful memorial. I am a returned peace corp volunteer from Liberia. When I went off to serve my country I didn't imagine the impact it had on my family and friends at home. I didn't realize it completely until I attended the Memorial Service for Kathryn MacGillivary. I never met Kathryn, but when I learned of her tragic loss it touched my heart. She, and every fallen Volunteer, could be anyone of us. We give our selves to serve our country through peaceful efforts to change the world. An Americian Flag is a small thing to ask to honor those who lost their lives serving their country.
Name: Ann Minns
Date: 21 Dec 2004
I was deeply moved by this site. It brought back a rush of memories from my time in Lesotho as a PCV. Why is there not something in D.C. to applaud ALL PCVs? At times (perhaps now more than ever) it would appear that we were and are the best "Foreign Aid" this country has to offer.
Date: 08 Dec 2004
my aunt marjorie was in senegal in the 90's. i am in awe of your organization and what you all do. you all amaze me. thank you
Name: Judith Haas (Simmons)
Date: 25 Nov 2004
My husband, Gareth Simmons, and Bob Zeck both died in the Dominican Republic in 1965. A small revolution was happening and the area in which we were was under gunfire, in hurrying to make curfew our little publico loaded with 6 of us was hit by a Land Rover. At this time Johnson had sent troops to "save American's lives". The Peace Corps continued to bring in new volunteers. Our leader Bob Satin did much negotiating for captured soldiers. He really understood "Peace"
Name: Gail Nystrom
Date: 24 Nov 2004
I had no idea this project was being worked on and am immensely grateful to you for doing this. It is no surprise that the Peace Corps people in Washington were compassionate and respectful and helpful. They would not be Peace Corps if they weren't that way. I would say that the Peace Corps vision not only changed my life, it became my life. I am a very good friend of Beth Livingston who died while serving here in Costa Rica in 1997. I feel that she is with me even today as I continue to do the kinds of service work that helps to make people's lives better. I want to support this project in any way I can, please continue to send me information and please continue your work. There is so much these fallen PCVs want to do and say still. I am especially interested in the concept of a physical memorial to Peace Corps right there next to the war memorials in Washington. Please let me know what is being done in that regard. We have a lot of people to make this happen…. Gail Nystrom
Name: Dave Von Glahn
Date: 10 Nov 2004
I was very close friends with Brian's sister Stacy. The death of her only brother broke her heart. Not knowing the true cause of death will haunt all of us forever.
Name: Sharon and Joe Marley
Date: 21 Oct 2004
We new Jeremiah Mack in PC. Great guy–loved him. Just wanted to say we gave our 1st born son his Zarma name, Moussa. Samuel Moussa Marley is 5 years old now. Hope all is well with his family. Sharon Marley
Date: 23 Sep 2004
Natalie was my counselor at camp…I miss her dearly. xoxox Annemarie
Name: Harry Howell
Date: 19 Sep 2004
I wish to add one more comment. In the Peace Corps, I took the same Oath of Service that I had taken in the US Army 10 years before. PCVs defend our country from all enemies foreign and domestic with truth. I too believe that the family of a PCV who dies in service should receive an American Flag. Sincerely, Go in Peace
Name: Harry Howell
Date: 19 Sep 2004
My wife, Mary, and I served in Honduras, 1972-1975, and lived there from 1976 to 1979. If we remember correctly, Roy Prior was on vacation in Costa Rica when he died. He was an older man (meaning over 60).Rosanna Provini was killed in a hit and run incident in Tegucigalpa. The owner of the car was a Lieutenant in the Honduran Army. He made a sergeant admit to have been driving the car. The US Ambassador at that time was a spineless thing named Becker. He would not press the Honduran government to punishing the guilty parties. Bill Maximer, an RPCV, was in charge of bean research for the Honduran Ministry. He died in a single vehicle accident in December, 1975. The Honduran Government buried him with a State Funeral in the National Cemeterythe only gringo so honored. Vols got along well in Honduras. One Special Ed teacher, Roxanne Dubois (73-75) had a local TV show on which she invited the local school kids, played guitar and sang Honduran folk songs. The first science fair was organized by a PCV in Talanga in 1974. During Hurricane Fifi, 1974, PCVs rescued children from a flooded orphanage (the nuns were too afraid to wade the river, so 2 girls saved the kids.); fed 1,000 refugees in Chaloma; delivered babies; and surveyed isolated villages for medical needs.
Name: margaret fitzgerald
Date: 15 Sep 2004
My family just found this site. My sister, Rose Anne Crimmins, served in India from 1965-1967. She died Feb.1. 1967 from carbon monoxide in her hotel in Iran. She was on her way home to N.Y.C. Rose Anne's group trained in California and left for India from JFK airport. My parents hosted a party for the group and family and friends at our home in N.Y. the evening before. My parents are now in their nineties and we all cherish the pictures from that party and letters and pictures sent from fellow volunteers and staff after her death. I attended the 25th anniversary and am still moved by the memories of the service at Arlington and how the Peace Corps family honored those fallen. Last winter, my brother visited the orphanage in Hyderbad where Rose Anne worked. We have a picture of the children planting a tree in memory of "the pretty blue eyed girl…" and a picture of the tree in 2004! This project is amazing and please add our name to those who hope for and would contribute to a memorial to all who lost their lives when they left us to "trod the path of peace in a distant land". Thank you so much. Margaret Crimmins FitzgGerald Skaneateles. N.Y. email@example.com
Date: 10 Sep 2004
I just typed in 'Deborah Gardener' on the internet and this site came up. I am currently reading "American Taboo" the story of the Tonga 16 and the murder of Deb Gardener. I'm only half way through…but am so engaged in the text. I am considering the Peace Corps, so this probably isn't what I should read! Nonetheless, I feel like a very privileged reader to be able to glimpse into the life of Deb Gardener and also her fellow volunteers. I'm not sure why I'm writing, I'm just so moved by the book…she sounded like a beautiful soul.
Name: Joe Midzalkowski
Date: 24 Aug 2004
There was a book recently published about a Peace Corps Volunteer in Fiji who was murdered by another volunteer. I don't have it handy and don't remember the title or her name. I do know it's not on your list. I'll try to locate it and send it later. You are undertaking a worthy project. My (then) wife and I helped med-evac David McCarthy from Longar, Arno Atoll, Marshall Islands, Micronesia in 1970. We later visited with his parents in Washington, DC. He was a great guy and a good friend who died of some sort of lymphatic cancer after being flown to Tripler Army Hosp. in Honolulu. At least his parents were able to get there and be with him at the end.
Date: 14 Aug 2004
It is a fine website, and the perfect forum for calling attention to a new book A Deadly Fog: Pith and Conflict, which portrays war in its various manifestations, historically and as we witness war around the world, today…the authors have endeavored to describe human emotion at the deepest levels of loss and longing. Its authors, a father and son collaboration, inspire others to raise their voices in protest against war as solution to problems…Its a good read.
Name: Don Wilson
Date: 28 Jul 2004
Donna and Chelsea, Great to see you here in Washington, and explore the Mall together in our hunt for a space for a Memorial to Fallen Peace Corps Volunteers. May these first steps toward a contemplative place, not only for fallen PCVs, but to honor all workers for peace here and abroad, begin bringing it to fruition. Along with a living web memorial, and the support you seek to provide — this is a vital project, and not just for Peace Corps. The changes to the website are terrific. While there will always be a sense of sadness about this project, of the lost lives of people who this world truly needed, there is too, a strong sense of renewed purpose. Through remembrance and recommitment, we pick up their torches to light our own work ahead, in their name. Thanks for giving us all the gift of sharing your grief, so that we too gain the sense of direction that has risen out of it, like a phoenix.
Name: Pat Reilly
Date: 21 Jul 2004
This is a lovely website and a nice touchstone for former volunteers, especially those who knew the PCVs who died in service. Thank you for your efforts. I hope they bring you solace as well.
Name: Bob Klein (Ghana I)
Date: 18 Jul 2004
Why not establish a memorial fund to be used in countries where fallen PCVs served? A monument may serve the needs of their families but a development fund will serve the needs of those the fallen PCVs tried to help.
Name: Kevin Koester
Date: 12 Jul 2004
I served with Lesa Sanftleben in Lesotho, 1984-1986. I miss her very much.
Name: Christine Vanderlan
Date: 28 Jun 2004
It is very important to recognize the work and sacrifice of fallen volunteers. Thank you for starting the memorial project.
Date: 27 Jun 2004
I saw the name of Gerald Robillard who had passed away while serving in Zaire 1n 1974. I would like to share a story about Gerry. I did not serve with him, but met him in 1972 while I traveled in Africa after my service in Southern Africa. I was in Kisingani, Zaire for 2 weeks awaiting a river boat. Gerry was a frequent visitor to George's Bar and Restaruant across from the Olympia Hotel where I was staying. Gerry had a great gift of making people laugh with his stories of the "Volkswagon drivin' Hippy Rebellion" back in Boston, and other spirited tales of how he had come to Zaire. He encouraged our party to eat George's "Kidney Pie" only to inform us later the kidneys had come from a monkey. He loved his training time in Geneva, Switzerland. It was my impression that it was the best time he had ever had in his life. Gerry spoke the most Americanized French I have ever heard, and people of loved it! He was so sincere in his ability to try to communicate with others. Gerry summed up his philosophy of the Peace Corps like this, and I have never forgotten it: "I do what I can to help; if everyone put just one bean in a pot, soon, nobody would go hungry." That was Gerald Robillard.
Name: Robert Deutsch
Date: 26 Jun 2004
Thank you some much for putting together this beautiful and sensitive web-site. Like many RCPVs I was touched by the loss of a friend and colleague during my service. I wrote the family but never heard a reply, so I was sort of left without an outlet for sharing my feelings and thoughts and memorializing my friend. I'll post something to his name soon. In the mean time, my thoughts and wishes go out to everyone who lost a friend or family member in the service of humanity and the Peace Corps dream.
Name: Richard Gabriel
Date: 25 Jun 2004
Congratulations to Jeremiah, Donna and Chelsea. A fantastic website and memorial long overdue. A very touching website (made me cry a couple of times). I was not a Peace Corps volunteer but I very much support the goals and dreams of the Peace Corps and their unselfish, dedicated volunteers. I have, however, had the pleasure for working on Peace Corps staff in D.C. Headquarters, and the Dallas Recruitment Office, and we worked desperately, albeit air-conditioned, to keep the operations running smoothly as best we could given the limited resources we always seemed to be at odds with. My partner was a Peace Corps volunteer in Mali. And despite a horrific accident which he overcame, his insistence on returning to Mali (after being MedEvac'ed to the State) to complete his service speaks volumes of his dedication and commitment like other Peace Corps volunteers. The entire concept of a physical memorial dedicated to fallen volunteers is a superb one and I hope you receive the support needed from current PCVs, RPCVs, the NPCA, and others who believe in the mission of President John F. Kennedy's legacy. My prayers and thoughts are with all of the families and friends. Thank you. –Richard
Name: mike willson
Date: 24 Jun 2004
i was in colombia I with crozier and radley, and i will contact radley's relatives to see if they are aware of your site.
Name: Terry Adcock
Date: 24 Jun 2004
This website is a wonderful memorial and a touching tribute to all PCV's. I served with Crozier and Radley (the first fallen PCV's on the list) in the CARE/Peace Corps project (Colombia I, '61-'63). Their deaths were a shock to all of us in Colombia I and in the Peace Corps and CARE staffs. Death of a young person hits everyone hard, but the death of comrades and friends hits home especially hard. It certainly hit me, because when we first arrived, we were assigned Colombian families to help us with acclimation. My assigned family and David Crozier's family lived next door to one another, so I got to know David well, even though we eventually served in different parts of Colombia. From personal experience, I can tell you that a lot of tears were shed for these two fine young men. They never had a chance to experience the joy of having children and grandchildren as I have, and that makes me sad, even now, to think about it. It is nice to know that they are still not forgotten, thanks to this website.
Name: Jeff J. Brown, Tunisia 80-82
Date: 24 Jun 2004
Thank you. I was particularly interested to see if Deborah Gardener's name was there from Tonga, 1976. Her story on NPR is based on a book called "American Taboo: A Murder in the Peace Corps", by Phillip Weiss (sp?): http://www.npr.org/features/feature.php?wfId=1961357
Name: Stephen Michael Murray
Date: 24 Jun 2004
Larry Radley 1961 was the first person I met who had anything to do with the Peace Corps. We were both interviewed on Chicago television before we went to training with the first Peace Corps group to do so. He and David Crozier another of our group that was killed with him are sorely missed. Thank you for beginning this memorial. The effort is long overdue.
Name: Dan Gudahl
Date: 24 Jun 2004
Wow, what a list! I knew about a couple of these people. The fellow who just committed suicide in Mali was a shock to read about too. Another victim of Lariam! If you need me to lobby the Arkansas Congressional delegation for support of this, Please let me know. Thanks, Dan Gudahl Winrock RPCV Philippines 81-84
Date: 24 Jun 2004
what a wonderful and special way to remember the volunteers who served as peace corps volunteers and I hope that the npca will help to establish a memorial at the kennedy library…
Name: Brian Farenell
Date: 07 Jun 2004
This is an awesome project and I wish you well. I was a PCV in Guinea in the mid-90s, where a pair of vols died in a road accident a few years later. Though I didn't know them personally, their deaths were felt throughout the Guinea PCV community. I'm also communications director for Friends of Guinea and if there's any way we can help, please contact me at the above address.
Name: Ken Hill
Date: 31 May 2004
Congratulations on this sensitive and touching creation! While I was a volunteer in Turkey in the 60s we lost two of our group – a couple, the Pearson's. We are affected to this day! As a Country Director I was fortunate not to have to face the death of one of my volunteers or staff. As the chief of operation for Europe and Asia and later as the Chief of Staff of Peace Corps I was not so fortunate. It's extremely emotional, difficult and sad. I can only imagine the effects on the families as well as fellow PCVs and staff. My only recommendation is you consider including staff who died in service. This is a very fitting tribute to our fallen colleagues and to you, the founders of this site! How excellent! Ken Hill
Name: Patrick Kadian
Date: 12 May 2004
It's hard to believe that it has been seven years since Jeremiah died. Most of what I remember of Jeremiah are the same things, it seems, that most people remember about Jeremiah: the times he made me laugh, his funny way of twisting his accent, the crazy things he did, and, of course, his kindness. However, Jeremiah also made a real impact on my life and the course that it would take. When I was in Niger, I had a tough first couple of months at site. I was sick for most of the time and lost more than forty pounds in 5 weeks. Of course, I also had to deal with the uncomfortable position of being a foreigner for the first time and all the other things that came along with being a Peace Corps Volunteer in Niger. I was lucky, though. Jeremiah was at our hostel doing some work on our maison-sans-bois when I was thinking about leaving. Not only did he make me laugh while I was miserable, he also was able to convince me to stick it out. The decision to stay has certainly affected my life. Since my time in Niger, I have had an opportunity to work with poor women in Ecuador to create a micro credit union, with people devastated by Hurricane Mitch in Honduras, and now with entrepreneurs in the former Soviet Union. None of that would have happened without Jeremiah's influence in my life. Jeremiah lived his life with presence and force. Your work in establishing a scholarship in his name and the wonderful website to fallen Peace Corps Volunteers are great tribute to the man he was. Please live with the certainty, as I do, that other great things are occurring, unknown to us and unmarked by his name, which would not have happened if Jeremiah never were. The energy he released still ripples through, affecting people all around the world.
Date: 19 Apr 2004
I just finished reading "Souvenirs de Nancy." I don't know what I am feeling. Anger mostly because we are not working towards making better and stronger laws to protcet PCV's. What is going on? People are being killed and raped…and no one is doing anything. Thank you…for putting her journal out.
Name: Deborah Rose
Date: 03 Apr 2004
I am the mother of Jennifer Rose, December 2000 fallen peace corps volunteer. I was just told about this site by another mother, Toni Kallison at our monthly Compassionate Friends meeting. I think it is great and intend to make a contribution to the site in the near future. Thank you for starting it.
Name: Lucretia Meece Ukraine 2001-2003
Date: 21 Mar 2004
As a recent RPCV, I can only imagine the sense of loss of a Volunteer to family and friends. We leaned so heavily on each other during our time of Service that losses like these would be incredibly painful. Thank you for this opportunity to share and support each other.
Name: Susan Henderson
Date: 20 Mar 2004
Thank you for this website. Those who did not come home will be remembered. Susan Henderson, RPCV Togo, co-volunteer of Karren Wald
Name: Amy Duncan
Date: 16 Mar 2004
What a beautiful and touching site. Thank you for creating it.
Name: Bill Batt
Date: 13 Mar 2004
Thank you for doing this. I'm Group III Thailand, 1962-1965, and I return every decade still to see "my country." Since I am now involved in public policy matters that relate to transportation, I'm wondering if perhaps it wasn't inspired by some of the harrowing travel experiences I had in rural areas some 40 years ago.
Name: Paul Karrer
Date: 04 Mar 2004
Thank you, very moving and necessary. We gained much "over there" and some lost even more. Paul Karrer RPCV W.Samoa Group 27 1978-1980
Name: John Levings
Date: 31 Jan 2004
Well done. The (growing) list of 'Fallen Volunteers' has been overlooked until now. While not 'in uniform' they were just as dedicated as other government employees – members of the military, Ambassadors, embassy (sp) staff, etc. Their volunteer status tends to cloud their status somewhat. The effort is most MOST appreciated by the families & friends of the Fallen Volunteers. Have you ever found a project!
Name: Susanne B. Cooper
Date: 31 Jan 2004
Thank you for this incredibly moving and important labor of love. Susanne (RPCV, Thailand 69-71)
Date: 13 Jan 2004
Though I wasn't one of Jeremiah's close friends in Niger, I remember the day he died and the absolute devastation felt by both the volunteers and Nigeriens alike who knew of the legendary "Moussa," upon the news of his death. I found it hard to believe, and still do, that someone so full of life was gone so quickly and for no understandable reason. I am deeply sorry for your loss, but I will add my voice to the chorus of people who agree that Jeremiah was an amazing spirit, and he continues on through you, through this site and through everyone he touched during his walk on this earth. Thank you for creating this site.
Name: Michelle Lynar Ashley
Date: 10 Jan 2004
Thank you so much for developing this wonderful website. On January 7, 2000, I lost the love of my life, PCV Jesse Thyne in a car accident in Guinea, West Africa. Although 4 years has passed, he is alive in my thoughts every day and I would love to share his story with others through your website. NO FPCV should ever be forgotten…
Name: Kathy Palokoff
Date: 10 Jan 2004
My son, Matthew Edwardsen, was in Guinea as a PCV and came home safely. This memorial reminds me of how grateful we all need to be for lives that continue and how grateful we all need to be for those people who left this earth while giving so much of themselves. I was shocked by how many volunteers have died during their service and would love to see a permanent memorial that celebrates the lives of our Peace Veterans as much as we celebrate the lives of our War Veterans. My deep sympathies to all those friends and families who have suffered such a tragic loss. Please let me know if I can help publicize this project — I have expertise in this area.
Date: 08 Jan 2004
Hi, I found this site for the first time today. It is very moving, and I offer up my condolences and prayers to the family/friends of the fallen PCVs. I am seriously considering becoming a PCV myself, after I get my undergrad in a few years. I am starting to read about the assaults and deaths, which is discouraging, but I know that if it's in God's will for me to go, I will. The guestbook has helped me to put it in perspective- it's like the soldiers going off to war–we are taking the same risk as they are.
Name: Clare A. Hatten
Date: 17 Dec 2003
Just learned about this site today… We have had an empty seat at our table for nearly twenty years… Lesa Hatten Sanftleben is missed…the memories are so precious.. Lesa's mom..
My father, Charles Snow, was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Bolivia, I believe in the late '60's. I was just running around the net looking at pictures of Bolivia and I stumbled upon this website. My father passed away in 1995 and left me with some incredible tales of his time in the Peace Corps. Think this is a wonderful cause and I would just like to let you know of my appreciation!
Thanks for this site. I knew 2 volunteers who died in Peace Corps. They were both extraordinary and unique people and it is painful to remember them, but this site helps to honor them. Katherine Romano, Missoula, MT
what a wonderfully peaceful way for those with losses to connect in compassion….although i did not lose a family member or friend who volunteered, my peace corps experience brought me great joy and grief as well…..while a volunteer in jamaica, i fell in love and married and gave birth to two children…i stayed in jamaica for 13 years until my children were kidnapped in 1989….i returned to the united states and finally recovered the kids in 1992….in 1999 my 12 yr old son, the youngest, was killed in an accident in colorado…..so, i suppose, my choice to become a pcv led to a loss that saddens me daily…but, my choice to become a pcv also led to such gifts that would never have been possible otherwise…i still return to jamaica at least once a year with my daughter who is now 19 and we visit with old friends who remember well this crazy american who came to help farmers and ended up making it her home as well as starting her family with them….i suppose if i had never joined the peace corps, maybe i would have avoided some of the most painful experiences of my life but, i would have also missed out on many of my greatest joys…(liz colten firstname.lastname@example.org)……peace.
I was very moved by your website. Thank you for this memorial. Eden Perry, RPCV
I am a former PCV who served for 3 1/2 years in Brazil. I extend my thoughts and prayers to your family on the loss of your son and brother in Niger. In these difficult days for our Country with regard to Iraq, it is wonderful to remember Americans like your departed son/brother who are true peace-makers in the world, and it is only through acts of kindness and sharing like Peace Corps can offer that our Nation will ultimately have peace at home and abroad. John Reeder, RPCV, Brazil '69-72 1812 N. Huntington Street Arlington, VA 22205
I strongly support your efforts to honor all Peace Corps Volunteers who have died during their service to the people of the world. Jim McGeorge, RPCV Liberia 15, 1968-71
Thanks and congratulations to the founders and shepherds of the Fallen Peace Corps Volunteers Memorial Project! It is important to recognize and honor those who have died while in Peace Corps service. Their contribution to their country and to it's most important values are as important as any! Ken Hill
What a nice tribute! I remember when the first Thailand PCV was killed — in a bus accident in the northeast. Thailand had gone 20 years without a single fatality when that happened. I didn't realize that another Thailand PCV had been lost in 1988. What a heart break to their families. Charles S. Rice, Thailand #43 (1973-78)
One of the reasons my Peace Corps experience was so moving and changing was that I learned to face war, and death, and understand the importance of peace. While I was a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand in 1998, and good volunteer friend of mine was brutally murdered. He was from France, and worked with a non-profit medical aid agency. I add this to remember the many, many other volunteers from all over the world who have also sacrificed their lives in the struggle for peace and justice.
I would like to see that each Peace Corp Volunteer received a casket flag upon their death. Any military person receives a casket flag at burial. Why not PCVs? Bill Timmons, RPCV Niger, IV 1965-67
I am a Mali RPCV who was in country when Zack Merrill passed away… I only met him briefly, but he clearly touched his fellow volunteers deeply. His passing was also of tremendous concern to many Malians with whom I have spoken. I think the idea of a tribute to fallen PCVs is touching, appropriate, and overdue. Craig Tower, Mali 94 – 96
Please add me to your e-mail list. I think what you're doing is very important. It's not only a matter of remembering RPCV's who have died while serving the cause of Peace although this is very important. It's also a way to remind people of the Peace Corps and it's relevance today, especially today. Let me know how I can help. Roger Parent, Thailand I email@example.com South Bend, Indiana 46615
Dear Chelsea and Donna, Thank you so much for creating this beautiful memorial to those who have died while working for world peace. Carolyn Nickels-Cox Thailand RPCV, 1971-1975
I think that this site is a wonderful tribute to those Peace Corps Volunteers who lost their lives doing something that they loved. They are our lost brothers and sisters who will never be forgotten… Mona Nyandoro RPCV Sao Tome and Principe, 1994-1996
A wonderful initiative. Will pass this on to others. Rob Dolce, State Dept.; PCV-Nepal 56, 1976-79; US Embassy Kathmandu, 1986-88
Like others who have added their comments here, we would like to thank you for undertaking this labor of love, in a sense on behalf of all of us. We will certainly contribute to a permanent memorial when the time arrives. Barbara and David Grove, Nigeria V, 1962-1964
I think this web site is a lovely idea, and I also support the idea of a memorial to fallen PCVs. Thanks for all you have done in this effort.
This is an excellent idea and a very noble project. Thank you for your efforts. James R. Beckey RPCV (Thailand)
During my Peace Corps service in Micronesia (1995-97) we would receive a Peace Corps magazine connecting us to the global Peace Corps community. At the end of each issue would be a tribute to PCVs who had recently "fallen". I never knew any of them, but I was always eerily touched and deeply saddened to read the tributes. It was too difficult to fathom losing Peace Corps kin because I knew they,like me, were in the middle of one of the most amazing, special and intense periods in their lives. I appreciate this tribute and commend everyone involved. Melissa Mendonca
A project like this was overdue. I'm sorry the grief of a family was its foundation, but glad that it may help in their healing. I served in Honduras (80-82) and had heard of a beautiful girl who had been killed by a bus in the streets of Tegucigalpa a few years before my service. I now see that girl was Rosanne Provini. Thank You, Brock Mullis RPCV
Thank You for doing this. It means a lot to me to honor my friend, Jennifer Rose, who passed away in a car accident in 2000. How can I add a photo and stories to honor her memory to this website?
Thank you for creating this extraordinary living memorial to fallen Peace Corps volunteers. It is my hope that this great endeavor can be expanded to include the memories of all fallen volunteers, and I will do what I can to help make that happen. I did not know Jeremiah Mack, but from the comments of his friends and family, he sounds like a terrific fellow PCV. Thanks to his mother and sister for organizing this effort, which is a window for us to learn about those we have lost. We need a wider project like this to focus our remembrances, and to explain the meaning of lives dedicated to peace. Every family who has lost a Peace Corps volunteer should be directed to this site, and be able to find a home here. Last year, I had the privilege of leading a service at Arlington National Cemetery for the Peace Corps dead in conjunction with the Peace Corps 40th anniversary. It is the second time we have done this, the first being at the 25th anniversary. Both times we held the service in the 3,000 seat Amphitheater for the Unknown Soldier – a very powerful place, that is now even more so for all of us who would like to honor the memory of fallen PCVS. I urge all to visit it in Washington. For the 25th, speakers included Gordon Radley, who lost his brother Larry (the first fallen PCV), Father Ted Hesburgh, and Bill Moyers — as well as participants Sargent Shriver and Loret Ruppe, the two longest serving Directors of Peace Corps. For the 40th, Director Gaddi Vasquez, Senator Harris Wofford, Congressman Chris Shays, Teacher of the year Michele Forman, NPCA Board Chair Pat Reilly, and Conference Director Cori Bassett spoke, and I did as well. I urge all to work with the National Peace Corps Association, and its new president, Kevin Quigley, to expand this terrific Memorial Project effort. As of June, 2002, the number of Peace Corps fallen while in service was 254. 165,000 Peace Corps volunteers had then served in 135 countries over a 40 year period. In closing, I would like to leave for you a poem written for the the Peace Corps dead, and delivered at the Amphitheater of the Unknowns at the service in 2002. I wrote it and read it, it is signed with the name I write with, my family's irish-scot clan name. It is written as though all the Peace Corps fallen were speaking to us with one voice. For the Peace Corps Fallen by Donald Maclean We who left you Before our time May return if you reach back And carry a world With us Within you. Let our monmument Be the mark you make In the life you lead of peace and purpose. Do, so that we may do Act, so that we may act Live, so that we may live Again, through you * * * * * Thank you again for this effort. I look forward to helping its expansion, and in that endeavor, to give the life of Jeremiah Mack and his fellow fallen volunteers the meaning of memory preserved and persistently maintained. These lost volunteers are our lost heart, it is up to us to find them again, and remember. All the Best. Don Wilson Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Sierra Leone, West Africa, 1979-83
I met Jeremy Rolfs when he was in kindergarten. I knew then that he would impact the world. He was bright, talented, and had that look in his eyes – you know the one I mean. It's the look that tells you that he has a secret that can change the world and he will just explode if he can't share it with you. And so, Jeremy exploded onto the world and left a legacy of joy and triumph – along with one of silliness and maybe a little stubbornness. Tenacity might be a better word than stubborn, but it doesn't matter. It just matters that my life was touched by his and I feel greatly honored by that. To his mother, father and sister, I give my thanks. You shared him with me and I can never repay the gift.
So glad to see Jeremy Rolfs remembered. One of his profs. Bob Spires
Chelsea and Donna, I just finished reading about your Jeremiah and looking at those amazing photos of him. I had heard so much about him from the Bergerons and I know he was one of those people who seems to be some sort of an angel to those who know him. I am so sorry for your great loss. I think your website and your ideas are inspiring… thank you for sharing with us. Andrea Ruma (across-the-street from the Bergerons…Norwood, MA)
Last Wednesday I was honored to again present the Jeremiah Mack award at Jeremiah's high school alma mater, Boston College High School. When I moved to Boston in 2001 I just happened to move within blocks of the school. Donna's invitation to present the award to one of the school's graduating rugby players is such a privilege. I was not one of Jeremiah's close friends in Peace Corps, but he mentored me as I came in as the first female mason volunteer. When I present the award to the recipient at BC High, I tell them how Jeremiah supported me. When no one else was around, he would say he knew there was a lot of pressure on me. He would encourage me that I could do it, and, especially, not to be afraid to ask questions. With everyone around, he would always make us all laugh. And if I was frustrated with something in the situation (like men not taking me seriously at a construction site), he would exaggerate the situation to ridiculousness, to make me laugh and lighten up too. The two young men I have seen receive this award have both been very moved. Appropriately, the recipient is chosen by his teammates and/or coaches as the senior who is "a man for others". Jeremiah always made people smile, even outside Zinder, in my village, where he couldn't speak the language. Even the day he died I remember laughing through tears as I remembered his antics. Thanks to Donna and Chelsea for creating this site. May it bring peace, even joy through tears, to many who loved pcvs who died so very honorably, serving their country, serving the world.
It is hard to believe that six years have gone by already since we lost Jeremiah. On his birthday and this day I try to do something special to honor him. A couple of years ago I prayed at the Vatican on his birthday. In 1998 I planted a maple tree at my house in Atlanta. I moved that tree to where I live now in South Carolina and it is thriving. Today I had cake for breakfast and spent the afternoon playing with my dog Bongo who thought Jeremiah was one of the best humans of all time. Each day I try to make my students laugh, remembering how much Jeremiah enjoyed making kids giggle. I miss you, buddy, but know you remain in our hearts forever.
This is a great project! I was a PCV in Morocco, '79 -81. Now I am anticipating my daughter going to Tanzania in June for relief work. I can now imagine some of the pain for parents who sent their children to do good work, not to see them again. You have my support. Trip Mackintosh Denver, Colorado firstname.lastname@example.org
I am sure Jeremiah's good works on earth and our memory of him still inspires many of of his Peace Corps friends and others who knew him. His short life was not wasted. There are many who live long lives but contribute little to make the world a better place. Jeremiah in his short time on earth, made a contribution. Though we miss him and still grieve for him, we are consoled by the knowledge that the world is a better place for his being here. His legacy lives on…Uncle Mike, Norwood, Mass.
Chelsea and Donna, what an amazing tribute. Jeremiahs grandiose presence will always be too great to slip away. And this just helps reinforce that memory. Still, we hear his voice, his laugh, his accent and of course see his fantastic smile. We laugh about his unique sense of humor and smile when we think of the tenderness that he showed so effortlessly. He visits us in our dreams and we swear our son wears his smile sometimes. Thank you, he is one who will not be forgotten. Thanks for this wonderful tribute and for the opportunity to honor all FPCV's. Adrienne Karecki and Todd Lofgren '95 – '97
Peace Corps is one of the rare phenomenon that brings together some of the most courageous, adventure seeking, fun loving, and to round it off, generous individuals this country has to offer. Jeremiah Moussa Mack was not an exception. It is pretty safe to say that anyone who ventures to spend two years in one of the most desolate, hot and dusty areas of the earth has to be adventurous. Jeremiahs choice of work in the Peace Corps was trying to battle the destruction of desertification through building houses made solely of mud. He had an amazing personality that could rally people around him, motivate people to work, get involved in trying to change things and throughout the enduring process-had people in stitches, making the work seem all the more enjoyable. Jeremiah paid me a visit in my village and I remember some students practicing for a play and coming over to show us. Within minutes he was encouraging them, giving them suggestions and from then on I was never to hear the end of how great Moussa was. My experience in Niger made me realise it is not the tangible gifts in life we appreciate most. I saw Jeremiah and his interactions with children, how he lit up their faces, made them laugh. I can only imagine how many people Jeremiah touched with his child like spirit while he walked this earth. I know the gift of knowing him has given me so much and I have missed many times being able to share some of those experiences I had in Niger with such a wonderful person, laughing at the absolutely crazy things you see and do and most of all loving it all with him. It is wonderful that you, Chelsea and Donna, have put this together as a way for us to share our memories. Thank you…. Margie Rehm
Chelsea; Thank you, your mother talks so lovingly about both her children and because of your efforts I have been able to see a bit of Jeremiah. To see the pride and love you both had for Jeremiah and to feel your great loss. Really the loss is all of ours because Jeremiah was a young man who gave to everyone he touched. His capacity to reach out and give to so many people is surely missed. Take care of yourself and your Mom (she is a special lady.) L. Dingwell Brockton, MA
Fallen, waging peace to secure the peace. All life has risks; these risked it in a good cause. Dwight Rousu, RPCV
Donna and Chelsea, It was shocking for me to realize how little has been done in the past to memorialize the men and women who gave their lives in an effort to make this world a better place by participating in the Peace Corps. What a beautiful and wonderful task you two have undertaken with this website. Jeremiah was a kind and funny "big cousin" and I miss him. We all do. So much. Thank you so much for doing this. No doubt you will continue to touch many, many lives through the work you are doing here. God Bless. Michelle B.
I just had a chance to "pop" on for a minute. I am so moved by the thoughts and the pictures. Jeremiah continues to touch my heart. Donna and Chelsea….what a wonderful tribute to Jeremiah and to the love you both had for him and each other….Ellie
Knowing Jeremiah was one of the joys of my life. I preceded him in the Peace Corps (Fiji: Group XXX) and helped him apply to his posting in Niger. From speaking with his group-mates, I know he was a model volunteer, devoted, hard-working and sincere. I'm sure he touched all he knew in that poor and distant land with his compassion and open heart. He was fun to be with and I'll always miss the chance to have watched him grow up. Though I have a wonderful stepdaughter, I have no male heir. I would have been very proud to have Jeremiah as my son. Mark C. Bergeron, Norwood, Massachusetts