SSGT Peter Woodall

04-2007

Peter Woodall

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a Marine who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom. Sergeant Peter Woodall, 25, of Sarasota, Florida. Woodall died April 27, 2007, while conducting combat operations in Al Anbar province, Iraq. He was assigned to 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, North Carolina.

Marine Sergeant Peter Woodall, 25, a 1999 graduate of Riverview High School, died Friday during combat operations in Al Anbar province, Iraq, He is the ninth service member connected to Manatee and Sarasota counties killed in the Iraq war.

Overwhelmed, Woodall's family had a friend talk to the media in front of the home of his parents, Elizabeth and Richard Woodall. Woodall's wife, Joanne, and 3-year-old son, Jacob, were at their home in Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Woodall also is survived by a sister, Katie, who attends Sarasota Military Academy, and a brother, Bart. Woodall was an explosives ordnance disposal technician. "It was a very dangerous job, " said family spokesman Wes Boland, "but he never talked about any close calls."

Sergeant Peter Woodall was the stereotypical Marine. The 25-year-old with broad shoulders and a buzz cut had the look, even in high school. He was a Marine "110 percent of the time," said his best friend from high school, Wes Boland. Woodall died Friday in Anbar province of Iraq, the Department of Defense said Monday.

The military would not release details of Woodall's death, but his stepfather, Richard Woodall, said he was placing a TNT disruption charge on an improvised explosive device when it exploded. He was married. He and his wife, Joanna, have a 3-year-old son, Jacob. He enlisted in 2000 after graduating from high school. Woodall's desire to serve in the military started with JROTC at Riverview High School, and the decorated Marine's life ended last week during his second tour of duty in Iraq. Woodall was assigned to the Explosive Ordinance Disposal Company, 8th Engineer Support Battalion, 2nd Marine Logistics Group, II Marine Expeditionary Force.

"We're proud of him," his mother, Elizabeth Wloka Woodall, said Monday.

Boland described Woodall, whom his high school friends knew by his father's last name of Wloka, as a loyal friend and a dedicated family man. But first, he was a Marine.

After his first tour in Iraq, Woodall briefly considered getting a discharge from the Marines and going into another line of service: policing. But instead of joining the Florida Highway Patrol as he had mentioned, the native of Poland re-enlisted, and was deployed earlier this year. "He knew there was a job over there to do," Boland said. His family said he will be buried at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.

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