In memoriam

We salute the fallen men of the 1st Ranger Battalion, who have died serving our country. You will not be forgotten.
It has been said, that "a man never dies when his name remains spoken." We wish to keep these heroes memories alive and ensure that their sacrifice will never be forgotten. Therefore we created this space to tell each Ranger's story in a unique and more complete way. We know that these men were great Rangers, but they were also amazing fathers, sons, and brothers. Those stories should be told. Consequently, if you have a memory, photo or short story your wish to share about one of these warriors, please send an email and we can incorporate it into his page.

Specialist Four Jeremy B. Bird

A Father’s Memory Of His Son

Twenty-nine years ago I was as wild as anyone could be
I met a wonderful woman and asked her to marry me
All our friends and family were at the wedding, they wished their very best
A new and special love I found, this woman’s patience I would sometimes test

Nine months after the vows, there came into this world a bundle of joy
It was a glorious day; she had given birth to a beautiful brown-eyed boy
He was full of spirit, and difficult at times, he was a lot of fun
One of my greatest treasures; I loved him dearly for he was my first son

I watched him grow and he developed into a young man so wild and free
He was like no other, one of God’s greatest gifts, we called him Jeremy
Growing tall and lean with a desire to be with the best
The way he played football and wrestled, he stood out among the rest

Hunting elk, deer, pheasant and taking one of the largest black bear
To be there to see him stalk and shoot, these memories I will always share
The greatest thing about him was how he treated his friends with respect
They loved him like a brother, for there was no fear that they could detect

Graduation day came early for him in the year of ninety one
On the honor roll four years for being the best that he was among
Most valuable football player and wrestler, he wouldn’t be denied anything less
After graduation he gave up his Blazer and friends, then joined the Army to be with the best

I asked him not to go; he said with firmness in his voice, “that he must do this for himself”
He was always G.I. Joe as a kid; his personal life would be put on a shelf
Training was hard with many difficulties, running and marching, never time to sit
He would become an Airborne Ranger, by their Creed they were never allowed to quit

Passing all of the tests except for the toughest he never had
To be with the best of the best he needed the Ranger Tab
With a weary body and hypothermia setting in, he still made it to the mountain top
In a motivational letter he told how he would get the Tab if it killed him, the Tab he finally got

I came home on that fateful day after work, I was tired and all worn out
In drove the Chief of Police, a priest and a sergeant, I wondered what this was about
His mother was the first to greet them, and then turned to me with tears in her eyes
For Jeremy had made the ultimate sacrifice and they told us how he dies

It was in a helicopter crash over the Great Salt Lake, it went down in a fiery flame
He had volunteered for this mission, letting no one else take it for he wouldn’t be ashamed
Sergeants, officers, enlisted men, the best of the best were together on that fateful day
All the rest of his Ranger Buddies were on shore, but all they could do was pray

I only wanted my Son back, and after several days he came home with God’s will
I asked Jeremy’s wrestling coach where he should rest; he said, “Bury him on a hill”
Twenty-two 1st Battalion Rangers came from Hunter Base, to tell Jeremy’s story
With a special viewing for his Ranger Buddies, we then played the song, Blaze of Glory

There was such beauty at the ceremony, a blanket of white snow, the Rangers were standing proud
With prayers and farewells, a twenty-one gun salute, then taps that touched the hearts in the crowd
His mother laid a yellow rose on the casket, as an eerie guest of wind came on down
As the rose blew off, a Ranger out of nowhere caught it before it touched the ground

I believe that gust of wind was taking his soul back to heaven, where he came from
Jeremy was only here for a short while; God’s gift to me, my beloved son
Two weeks after he had gone, I had a vision, it was Jeremy and he said to me
“Get on with your life, I am at peace, you’ve grieved enough, just let it be”

While in training he had told me to buy a place in Idaho, following his dream, I would start a new life
It has been very hard for this old cowboy, for his mother is no longer my wife
Climbing mountains, snowmobile, riding horses, hunting lions, and sometimes living on the edge
The danger and excitement that he would have liked, almost got me killed, falling off a rugged ledge

When I’m out doing the things he wanted me to do, his spirit is always at my side
As I travel throughout the country, there isn’t much this cowboy hasn’t tried
For Jeremy is the wind blowing in the pines or a rooster pheasant flying through the air
The bugle of a bull elk, or the baying of the hounds on the trail of a black bear

This hunter and Ranger was of me, the son I loved so much and will always treasure
He was and still is, someone we will always miss, more than anyone could measure
They say he stood tall, was a good friend, a man that walked with purpose
The wrestler, the son, the friend, the hero, his spirit lives on in every one of us

As the days go by and time passes, his spirit keeps me moving on
I will think of him often and the memory of where he is, in the great beyond
Someday this old cowboy will ride that horse alone, to that mountaintop on high
It will be a lonely ride, but it will be worth it, to see my Son, that Ranger in the Sky

His Dad

Submitted by Byron Bird, Father of Specialist Four Jeremy B. Bird
HHC, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment
Killed in Training, Helicopter Crash
Great Salt Lake, Utah
October 29, 1992

We salute the fallen men of the 1st Ranger Battalion, who have died serving our country. You will not be forgotten.