Fallen Soldier: Shane M. Koele

Shane M. Koele
Dates: Died March 16, 2005
Hometown: Hartley, IA
Branch of Service: Army
Rank: Staff Sergeant
Player: Sam Sommerhauser

Staff Sergeant Shane Koele, 25, of Hartley, Iowa, was assigned to the 212th Military Police Company, Kitzingen, Germany. He died March 16, 2005 at Shindand Airfield, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when a land mine exploded near his Humvee in Shindand, Afghanistan, just one week after arriving in country. SSG Koele was patrolling the borders “and he was very excited about doing that.” He felt he was helping to stop the poppy trade which was financing terrorism.

Koele was a three-sport letter winner at Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn High School. He played football, basketball and track, earning a berth in the state track meet and playing in three state football playoffs.
“Everyone loved him, I mean everyone. It doesn’t matter whether young or old,” his wife, Cheryl, said. “He was just so sweet and kind to everyone, and nice-mannered.”

SSG Koele is survived by his wife, Cheryl and daughter, Kiley.