On March 11, 2013, Oklahoma mourns another death of one of it's own in the Jalrez District of Afghanistan while on his second tour serving his country. Staff Sgt. Rex L. Schad, 26, of Edmond, Oklahoma was killed when a man dressed as an Afghan Police Officer opened fire on the U.S. Soldiers, killing two. The Taliban has taken responsibility for the killing.
Schad was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 1st Armor Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Ga.
Schad joined the Army in February 2006, after graduating from Edmond High School in 2005. His grandfather, Harold Whipple stated, “Rex was a smart kid, he should have been in college”, but born on a Naval base and into a military family, Schad wanted to be in the military and enjoyed being on the front line.
It was about 3:30 pm on March 11, when an Army Sergeant and Chaplain pulled up at Schad's mother, Colleen Whipple's home. She was outside with the trunk opened on her car when they walked up and she fell over onto the ground. Through her grief, she states that she is very proud of her son and the sacrifice he made for his country. She states that he was an extraordinary young man who always tried to help the underdog. She went on to say that it was just last month that he was talking to her about his future plans, trying to decide if he wanted to be a teacher or a politician.
Schad was scheduled to come home in July. His brother, Max Whipple, who is also in the Army and stationed in Alaska, flew in to escort his brother's casket. The family is still in the process of making funeral plans.
Rex Schad will certainly be missed by many, and the state of Oklahoma along with the entire nation is thankful for his service and the sacrifice he made for our country. Our thoughts go out to his family. He died a hero, and we all hope that the family can find some comfort and peace throughout this tragedy.