On Tuesday, the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team 2nd infantry held a special memorial. Soldiers and families of the fallen honored those who gave their lives in a year-long deployment to Afghanistan.
"There's actually quite a few guys that gave their lives this tour that were close to me,” said Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Montera.
Montera knows it could have been him.
"Very lucky, very lucky," he said.
Injuries in battle took his legs but spared his life. He came out of a coma only to endure more pain - the kind that never goes away.
The family of Specialist Trevor Pinnick was there to see his sacrifice honored. His legacy that lives on in 2-year-old Melody.
“He was very proud of her and she talks about her daddy every day. She'll never forget him,” said Nancy Pinnick, Trevor’s mother.
His name, along with the names of 20 other soldiers, are forever engraved in their hearts and minds and, at JBLM, in stone.
“It's more permanent, more permanent. It's every day, every day in your brain. I had him for 20 years, now he's gone,” said Nancy.
The fallen soldiers were part of the Arrowhead Brigade that deployed in December 2011. Their focus: the destruction and disruption of insurgents throughout southern Afghanistan. Their year-long deployment officially ended Tuesday.