Body of Staff Sergeant William R. Wilson III Back in U.S.

3:02 PM, Apr 3, 2012   |    comments
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  • photo courtesy: U.S. Air Force photo/Roland Balik
  • photo courtesy: U.S. Air Force photo/Roland Balik
  • photo courtesy: U.S. Air Force photo/Roland Balik

BUFFALO, NY-- Governor Cuomo has ordered all flags on all state buildings be lowered to half-staff in honor of Staff Sergeant William R. Wilson III.

WEB EXTRA:  Click here to pay your condolence to the Wilson family.

Wilson, a Getzville native, died Monday of wounds from small arms fire in Afghanistan.

He was a member of the 2nd Battalion, 28th Infantry Regiment of the 172nd Infantry Brigade, based in Grafenwoehr, Germany.

"On behalf of all New Yorkers, I extend my deepest sympathies to the family, friends, and fellow soldiers of Staff Sergeant Wilson," Governor Cuomo said. "We will always be grateful for the service and dedication of this New York soldier."

His body was brought back to US soil this past weekend to Dover, MD.

His family was on hand at Dover for the arrival Wednesday night.

Staff Sergeant Wilson was just 27-years-old.

His family released this statement on Monday:

Our family was devastated this week to learn that our son, Staff Seargent Billy Wilson, was lost in the War on Terror in Afghanistan. At this moment, our time and attention is committed to grieving our son and trying to find peace in a world which can never be the same without him.

As many of you know, Billy's life was marked by a willingness to put others before himself, to pursue duty over comfort, and to do what was right even when it was not convenient. At a time when old-fashioned virtues seem cliché and traditional values feel empty, our son's life showed that they have meaning still. His decency, his courage, his loyalty and his patriotism are a reminder that our family, and indeed our nation, could do no better than Billy.

And of course, while we honor him for the values he represented, we remember Billy also, more simply, as our son. We remember his easy smile, his disarming demeanor, his hearty laugh and his contagious joy. We remember the kindness and glowing example he provided his brothers Jeremy and Wesley, the tenderness and compassion he showed his fiancé Jess, and the pride and happiness he brought us as parents.

Finally, we are deeply moved by the outpouring of support, friendship and love we have received in the past week. We would like to thank the community, whose enduring and overwhelming support furnish a powerful reminder of the countless lives which Billy touched. In the days to come, further details will be provided regarding funeral arrangements.

We will soon bid Billy a final farewell, and mourn a life tragically cut short. But we know that the memory of his life, and appreciation of his sacrifice, will not soon fade. We remain deeply grateful for your prayers and support, as our son makes his final journey back home.


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