EDMOND, Okla. – A soldier from Edmond was killed Monday in Afghanistan.
Twenty-five-year-old Rex Schad, another U.S. Soldier, and two Afghan policemen were killed in a surprise attack.
Four others were wounded.
Rex was supposed to come home in July, a homecoming his grandfather, Harold Whipple, was looking forward to for a long time.
He said he spoke with Rex just one day before his death.
“I spoke to him at 11:30 on Sunday morning,” he said.
Whipple leafed through piles of photographs of his grandson.
Whipple has a flag in the window of his house with two blue stars that represent his family members in the military.
Now he’ll switch out one of those blue stars for a gold star, the color to honor a fallen soldier.
The two shared a close relationship; Harold sent Rex care packages almost every week.
Harold said, “He was laughing and telling me that, one of the things I sent him was a box of 100 sticks of beef jerky, and he said all the rest of them only get five or six sticks in their packages and he gets 100!”
Rex also sent presents back to his grandfather from his time overseas; those gifts are now treasured.
“He’s been to Korea, I’ve been to Korea,” Whipple said, explaining one of Rex’s gifts. “He brought me a gift that the Korean government had given him. The old rusty barbed wire from the original DMZ.”
Whipple said Rex’s remains are being flown back to the states and he’ll be laid to rest later this week at Fort Sill National Cemetery.
As Harold tries to recover from his grief, he said one thing is certain.
“I consider that he was murdered,” he said.