Afghanistan War Hero

Staff Sergeant Walter F. 'Trae' Cohee III usmc

Born April 17, 1975 'Trae' Died On january 19, 2002 at 26 years of age when the Marine CH-53e he was flying on crashed in a remote region 60 kilometers south of Bagram in Northern Afghanistan. He was assigned to Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 361 (HMH-361), the "Flying Tigers" of Marine Aircraft Group 16, Combined Task Force 58, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar, California. 'Trae' was the son of Walter F. cohee, jr., and jeanne cohee of mardela springs, maryland.

In order to memorialize 'trae' for eternally the then delmarva detachment # 115 applied to the marine corps league  national  headquarters to have the detachment renamed

Ssgt walter f. 'trae' cohee iii

And on june 10, 2009 a special dedication ceremony was held at the moose lodge in westover where state commandant jerry fay presented the detachment with their new charter. also in attendance were the past state commandant jack severn, the state chaplain guy hall, trae's  parents mr. & mrs. walt cohee as well as  special dignitaries and many detachment members, FRIENDS AND GUESTS.

Sikorsky CH-53E Super Stallion. This picture was presented to the Cohee family

Trae's Parents Walt & Jeannie Cohee

Detachment Member Dave Mills (above) alternated with Commandant Bouma reading a tribute to 'Trae'. That tribute appears below

Jerry Fay (left) Department Commandant presenting Charter to Detachment Commandant (right) Andy Bouma

Detachment Junior Past Commandant Jim Siegel speaking to the Cohee family and all in attendance. Jim is a retired Marine Colonel.

(L to R in Gold Covers) Department of MD officers Chaplain Guy Hall, Junior Past Commandant Jack Severn and Commandant Jerry Fay

Following the ceremony a light dinner was served along with the above cake which was provided by Ed and Fran Hearthway

'Trae' your mission on earth is complete and you are now a member of GODís Heavenly armed forces. Stand down brave Marine and take your rightful place in Heaven with all the HEROES who have passed before and know that you will never be forgotten

A Tribute to

Staff Sergeant Walter F. 'Trae' Cohee III

'Trae' Cohee was born and raised in Mardela Springs, Md. He joined the Marine Corps shortly after graduating high school.

Kris Cohee, Trae's 23-year-old brother and a volunteer firefighter in Mardela Springs, said of his brother: "He was there any time you asked."

Jeannie, his mother,  said Trae was not one to complain about serving his country. "He said, 'Mom, I didn't join the Marines to sit still. I joined the Marines to help,'" she recalled.

Ron Wainwright, a former teacher of Trae's at Mardela High School, recalled the first time he saw Trae after he'd joined the Marine Corps. "He was standing outside the principal's office in his dress blues looking so proud," Wainwright said. "He was very popular and had a lot of friends so it was hard for him to leave such a small town. But he wanted to see the world. He wanted more."

Trae was assigned to Heavy Helicopter Squadron 361, based at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar Calif.

Our Detachment on March 11, 2009 voted unanimously to formally change the Detachment name from "Delmarva Detachment" to the "SSgt. Walter F. 'Trae' Cohee III Detachment" to honor the service, memory and ultimate sacrifice that "Trae" made on January 19, 2002.

Semper Fidelis, Staff Sgt. Walter F. 'Trae' Cohee III.

The following are some of the remarks that other Marines that knew and served with Trae had to say about him.

"Mr. Cohee,
As I get ready to retire, I think back on my career and I remember your Son fondly. He was a great Marine, smart individual, and had a fantastic sense of humor. I miss him dearly and thank you and Mrs. Cohee for giving us the honor of his friendship. My heartfelt condolences, still, for your loss. I learned more from him than I could ever teach. Semper Fi."
LtCol Matt "Chubber" Paul of Fredericksburg, VA

"Cohee, one of the funniest guys I ever met. It was an honor to be your friend and fellow Devil Dog. Life on ship wouldn't have been the same without you. I will think of you every time I hear the song "BrickHouse". Rest in peace buddy."
Adam Barbour (USMC) of Boston, MA

"Trea, you were one of the best friends I've had in my life. You will never be forgotten because of my memories and with the stories my son will hear about you. I am proud to have been your friend and fellow Marine. Thank you for your honor, courage, and sacrifice."
Cole Lumpkin (USMC) of Gadsden, Alabama

Master Sergeant Thomas G. Villarreal said Cohee's motto was "Get it right. Get it right the first time. There is no room for error. We're Marines."

"Their country called in November and they volunteered." Lt. Col. David L. Spasojevich said of Staff Sgt. Walter F. Cohee III and Staff Sgt. Dwight J. Morgan.  "They were chosen because they were the best.  They were Marines' Marines.   In disbelief, anger, grief and sorrow, we grasp for memories.  They will be in our hearts forever."

Additional information on this very solemn occasion

A lot of hard and dedicated work goes into an event of this nature and goes beyond just the detachment members. Included in the group that contributed to putting this ceremony together were detachment family members, local friends, friends of the League and friends members have made over many a year that live afar plus others the members have never met.

Particularly noteworthy is that in mid May 2009, Marine Ed Hearthway the Detachment Judge Advocate contacted a few old friends he had met at Mount Saint Mary's University back in the 70's. These gentlemen work at Sikorsky in Connecticut and Marine Hearthway was hoping they could offer some ideas as to how to make the dedication ceremony special for Jeannie and Walt Cohee. One of these men put Marine Hearthway in touch with Colonel Jim Garman USMC (Ret).  Colonel Garman simply asked what he could do to assist our Marine Corps League Detachment.  It seems that the Colonel flew the Sikorsky CH 53E during his career in the Marines, and is a member of the Marine Corps League in Connecticut . Thanks to the Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation and Colonel Garman they provided the picture of the Sikorsky CH-53E Super Stallion shown above as well as a large model of the CH-53E and various posters, pins and things of that nature. At the ceremony the picture, model of the CH-53E and many other fine trinkets were present to "Trae's" parents.

All of these folks need to be thanked and congratulated for all they did for this special occasion and their efforts and hard work were sincerely appreciated by the Cohee family.

The SSgt Walter F 'Trae' Cohee lll Detachment, Marine Corps League, formerly the Delmarva Detachment, continues its mission as a veteranís service organization comprised of retired, active duty, veteran Marines, and FMF Corpsmen.  The Detachment supports our servicemen and women wherever they maybe serving as well as the families of those deployed, all our veterans, our local youth and we volunteer wherever and in whatever way we can in our local community on the eastern shore.

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