April 19, 1982 - August 16, 2005
Mike was a member of E Troop, 108 Cavalry, 48th Brigade Georgia Army National Guard. He was deployed to Iraq out of Fort Stewart GA attached to the 3rd Infantry Division U.S. Army. He had joined the Georgia Army National Guard March 28, 2000 while a junior at Loganville High.
He went to "boot camp" - basic training at Fort Benning during the summer of 2000 and returned to Loganville for his senior year that August, graduating May, 2001. He then went to Fort Gordon for his Advanced Individual Training late June 2001 through November 2001. In Janaury 2002 he started college at Georgia Military in Milledgeville. He took what was to be a year out from college in 2003 to recruit full-time with the Georgia Army National Guard. He was planning on going back in 2004 but thought his unit was being called up so held out and worked full-time, and moved to Sharpsburg to live with us. In the fall of 2004 as he was making plans to re-enroll at Georgia Military Fairburn campus, he was called up.
Mike's unit deployed on May 15 2005 after five months of train-up, landing in Kuwait on the 16th and entering Iraq a few weeks later. He served at Yusufiyah Iraq in the Triangle of Death about 15 miles southwest of Baghdad. Mike escaped several close calls but in the early morning hours of August 16, 2005 his three HumVee patrol stopped to check a suspicious location.
While out of their vehicles on dismounted patrol a very powerful roadside bomb exploded, killing Mike and seriously wounding two of his fellow soldiers.
Mike Stokely was age 23 when he died.
In honor of Mike and all of the fallen, I would like to ask you on this day his birthday to make a donation to the Mike Stokely Foundation, Inc.
Founded on the Stokely Family home in Sharpsburg GA in the first few hours after his family learned of his death. The Foundation was formed to allow those who wished to show their appreciation for Mike's sacrifice and support for his family through donating to help kids in need have books and kids to go to college. Since then the Foundation goals have expanded through the various programs, including the Yusufiyah Project to help the poor kids where Mike served and was killed to have school supplies and partnered with Atlanta based Chick-fil-A to raise money to assist the family of seriously wounded soldier in Afghanistan, SFC Mark Allen who had served in 2005 with Mike in Iraq. Your donation makes these projects possible and you can be assured that your money goes for the purpose you select, not for operational and administrative expenses as the Stokely Family pays those expenses.
The Foundation has various programs or Scholarships that it supports. In 2010 the Foundation will award a book scholarship of at least $500 to a graduating high school senior from Northgate High, East Coweta High, Newnan High, and Central Education Center, Coweta County School System, and at minimum award of $500 to a student at Mike's High School / Loganville High.
These scholarships are chosen by the schools using guidelines to help a student whose ability to attend college will be enhanced by the scholarship. The student has to possess an academic ability to attend a technical or traditional four year program and other resources they have available such as scholarships or parent's ability to assist with their education are factors considered.
The Foundation will also award at least a $500 scholarship to a student who will attend Georgia Military College in Milledgeville GA where Mike attended one year before going to Iraq. This student chosen for the Mike Stokely Memorial Scholarship by the school can be a cadet who may have plans for a military career or can be a non-cadet / traditional students in its two year program.
The Foundation also funds book purchases for kids who might not otherwise have the ability to buy a book.
The Foundation also has previously funded purchasing school supplies for the poor children of Yusufiyah Iraq where Mike served and died. In 2008 1000 pounds of school supplies was shipped for distribution by the 101st Airborne. Future projects of this type are planned.
Donations can be made via PayPal on the Foundation's Web Page.
Or by check. Please make checks out to:
Mike Stokely Foundation Inc.
100 Fountainhead Way
Sharpsburg GA 30277