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Soldier with Western Pa. ties killed in Iraq

| Friday, Sept. 30, 2005

GROVE CITY -- A soldier with Western Pennsylvania ties was killed in Iraq when his vehicle rolled over, according to the military and his family.

Sgt. Shawn A. Graham, 34, of Brazoria, Texas, was killed Sunday in Baghdad, the Army said. Graham was originally from Grove City, Mercer County, where the Cunningham Funeral Home will handle arrangements once his body is returned, his family said.

Graham's mother, Kathleen, said her son was happy to be sent to Iraq in January, because his father and brother already had been sent to the Middle East.

"At one point, I had all three there -- two in Iraq and one in Afghanistan," Kathleen Graham said. "He was just so upset when he found out his dad (and brother) got activated before him. He just thought, 'If they can go, why can't I go?' "

Graham's father, Thomas, returned less than two months ago from Afghanistan, where he served with the Indiana National Guard, she said. Nicholas Graham, a brother, returned in March after serving in Iraq with the Marines.

Sgt. Shawn Graham was a member of the Army National Guard's 124th Cavalry Regiment, 34th Infantry Division, out of Fort Worth, Texas.

Graham served 10 years in the Marines after graduating from Grove City High School in 1989. He was inactive for a year, then was reactivated after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. By then he had moved to Texas where he joined the National Guard.

Graham's wife, Jeannette, still lives in Brazoria.

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