Memorial held for another Bucks Co. soldier

June 4, 2008 4:25:18 AM PDT
Another picture, another marker now rests at the Bucks County courthouse, in memory of a fallen soldier. This county has suffered heavy military losses. Today, attention was paid to its most recent - Hilltown resident Shawn Suzch.

A Marine played a rendition of taps outside the Bucks County Courthouse, as others stared at the photograph of 32-year-old Shawn Suzch. The Army sergeant was killed by a suicide bomber while on patrol in Baghdad in March.

Standing in the crowd was his widow, Angela, and 8½-month-old Alyssa - the child who will grow up having never truly known her father. The man who volunteered for a third tour of duty in Iraq.

Angela Suzch tells us, "I support everything my husband did. And to me it's like, this is what he loved to do. This was his dream, to serve his country."

Suzch moved to a foster home at the age of 16, and graduated from Penn Ridge High School. He had considered that foster family his true family, along with his fellow soldiers.

Rick Pforter, Shawn's foster father says, "The army was Shawn's family up until Alyssa was born, and those men he served with meant everything to him. He would tell you that."

Suzch's picture is now among 17 at the Bucks County Courthouse. All of the people featured were from Bucks County. All of them died while fighting in recent conflicts, and 15 of them were killed in Iraq.

Marine Lt. Travis Manion of Doylestown was killed in Iraq just over one year ago. His family was there to honor Suzch.

Travis' mother, Janet Manion said, "We're still feeling the pain. We'll always feel the pain. But this project helps to remember them."

Angela Suzch has a lot of grieving to do, and for Alyssa, a lot of teaching.

"I'm going to tell her what kind of brave man her daddy was, and that he was a hero. And I'm gonna try to, in my best power to tell her how much he loved her."