Smiths Station Army Veteran Dies Of Heart Attack Years After Inj - WRBL

Smiths Station Army Veteran Dies Of Heart Attack Years After Injury In Iraq

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SMITHS STATION, Ala. -

Sgt. Richard Marshall had a lot of roles in life. The Army veteran was a devoted husband, a father to two, and a hero to all.

The Smiths Station native passed away after his 6-year fight with a severe injury received during a deployment. His family and friends say he fought until the very end.

"He was proud to be an Indian, proud to be a soldier, but most importantly proud to be a father," says Scott Townsend, a friend of Marshall.

Marshall was on his third tour to Iraq when his Humvee was hit by a roadside bomb. Townsend says everyone else in the Humvee was killed and Marshall wasn't expected to live, but he says by God's grace, he survived the crash.

Marshall suffered major injuries to his heart and immediately underwent open heart surgery in Baghdad. He returned to the United State where despite dodging death once, the battle wasn't over. His heart weakened and he would need a new one to survive. He never received a new heart, and passed away on July 16th.

Sgt. Marshall left behind a lot of memories, to the Rogers and Townsends; their favorite memory was his friendship. They went to church together and spent weekends going on camping and fishing trips. They got together Sunday evening to share memories and what they'll miss most about their friend.

"His presence," says Drew Townsend, a friend of Marshall. "This morning was the first Sunday back to church without him. It was tough."

"We know that we will see Richard again," says friend Connie Rogers. "We have comfort in knowing where Richard is."

Sgt. Marshall was 37-years-old. He was laid to rest at Ft. Mitchell National Cemetery.

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