Spc. Ryan Stroud
3rd Brigad Combat Team 1st Cavalry Division Public Affairs
BAQOUBA, Iraq - Soldiers from the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, gathered in what was known as the “Grey Wolf” Square at Forward Operating Base Warhorse, outside of Baqouba, Iraq, for a dedication ceremony and renaming of the square to honor a fallen friend and Soldier, Staff Sgt. Donnie Dixon.
Dixon died of wounds received in combat Sept. 29. Those who proudly served with him during the brigade’s deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom 06-08 gathered to render one last salute and unveil the dedication sign which bears Dixon’s gleaming smile at the newly-named square, Nov. 22.
“Today we dedicated the Grey Wolf Square and renamed it to the Dixon Square after Staff Sgt. Donnie Dixon, for his contributions to the Army and to his service in Iraq,” said friend and fellow Soldier, Staff Sgt. Mario Whitaker, non-commissioned officer in charge of the commander’s Personal Security Detachment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division.
“This dedication was very important because Staff Sgt. Dixon was a great guy, father, leader and friend,” said Whitaker. “He sacrificed everything he was known for to come over here and try and make Iraq a better place.
“He never griped or complained about anything; he always accomplished every mission that was placed before him,” he continued.
The Dixon Square is used by the Soldiers stationed at Warhorse as a hang-out spot - a place where they can call their families, get online or grab some well-deserved coffee or pizza. With new Soldiers coming and going from Warhorse everyday, Whitaker said he hopes those coming in will take notice of the efforts and achievements Dixon made for his unit, his country and his family.
“I hope that when the new Soldiers coming to Warhorse look at the sign of Staff Sgt. Dixon, they see that joyful smile on his face,” Whitaker said. “He was always happy, no matter what the situation or circumstances were. Even though we are in Iraq, ducking bullets and dodging [improvised explosive devices], he always had that smile on his face.
“When a new Soldier comes in here, they can see that this staff sergeant was happy and proud to serve his country and give everything he could to those around him,” he concluded.
Photo - Col. David W. Sutherland, brigade commander of 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, and Staff Sgt. Mario Whitaker, non-commissioned officer in charge of Sutherland’s personal security detachment, unveil the dedication sign of Dixon Square, the food court at Forward Operating Base Warhorse in Baqouba, Iraq, dedicated in honor of Staff Sgt. Donnie Dixon, a member of the PSD who was killed in action Sept. 29. Photo by Spc. Ryan Stroud.