Fallen Hero Spc. Gregory Rundell, United States Army

SPC. Gregory B. Rundell

April 18, 1986 - March 26, 2008
U.S. Army

Gregory Rundell from North St. Paul joined the army because he thought it would help him achieve his dreams - of serving his country, going to college, and ultimately becoming a police officer. His mother, Joanne Richardson, was concerned about Greg's decision in 2005 to become a soldier. Knowing that he could be sent to Iraq, she feared that "that day" might come. His brother, Kyle, states, "He believed in a cause that was greater than his own."

He had been in Iraq for about three months when the devastating news came. He was killed by a sniper while manning a guard tower at a base just north of Baghdad. He was 21 years old.

What I have heard about Gregory is that his smile and a very gentle spirit drew people to him. He was also exceptionally artistic and could capture likenesses of people. While painting this young man, I imagined how pleased he would be to have his portrait painted. Joanne elected to have him painted in his dress uniform "because this was a happy time for him."

Before being deployed Greg had written to his mother that even if the very worst happened, "I don't want tears of loss, but tears of happiness for what I was able to do." States Joanne, "I believe Greg gave the ultimate sacrifice. He is a hero in my heart and life. I stand tall and brave because my son stood tall and brave."

Note: See the family receiving the painting on Inside Glimpses.

Portrait sponsored by:
- MLT Group - Rochester, MN