Governor Ernie Fletcher’s Communication Office
Governor Ernie Fletcher directs flags at state offices at half-staff in memory of Kentucky guardsman

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, July 05, 2005  
Contact Information:  Carla Blanton
Michael Goins
Jodi Whitaker

Kentucky National Guardsman Specialist Ryan J. Montgomery killed near Baghdad 

FRANKFORT, Ky.: Governor Ernie Fletcher has directed that flags at all state office buildings be lowered to half-staff in honor of Specialist Ryan J. Montgomery, of Greensburg, Ky.  Montgomery was killed near Baghdad on Sunday.

“To learn of the death of one of our own on the day we set aside to celebrate our country’s freedom reminds us of the tremendous cost of freedom,” said Governor Fletcher. “Specialist Montgomery bravely chose to devote his life to serving others – at home by training to be a volunteer firefighter, and abroad by serving his country with the Kentucky National Guard. His courage and bravery will always be remembered.

“The First Lady and I send our heartfelt condolences to the family of Specialist Montgomery. Our thoughts and prayers are with them in this difficult time.”

Montgomery, 22, was a Kentucky Army National Guardsman assigned to Bravo Battery 1st Battalion 623rd Field Artillery, based in Campbellsville. His unit mobilized for Operation Iraqi Freedom in November, and deployed in January 2005. Montgomery was killed when his up-armored Humvee encountered an improvised explosive device while returning from a convoy escort mission near Baghdad. Two other Kentucky National Guard soldiers were wounded.

Flags will remain at half-staff throughout the state until sunset on the day of Montgomery’s funeral. Services are pending at this time.

Montgomery is the seventh Kentucky National Guard soldier to be killed in the War on Global Terrorism.

The Kentucky National Guard does not release information on casualties until 24 hours after the soldier’s family is notified.