Family and friends remember Sapulpa soldier killed in Afganistan


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Updated: 8/05/2011 9:59 am Published: 8/04/2011 2:35 pm


Staff Sgt. Kirk Owen of Sapulpa was killed Tuesday by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan. Sgt. Owen one of four Oklahomans killed in Afganistan, within the past week. He was escorting a bomb squad inside a vehicle designed to protect them on but was killed when he drove over a bomb.

37-year-old Owen was killed while on his third deployment, this time in Afganistan.

"Kirk is one of those guys who had a natural sense of duty and honor," says Owen's local pastor at First Baptist Church, Doyle Pryor.

He leaves behind two girls and his wife. His 15-year-old daughter sent a message about her father:

"...My dad was a fantastic leader. All of his guys looked up to him. My nickname for him was Ironman. There was nothing to me that he couldn't do. He loved Jesus with all his heart and that's where my peace is coming from. I can just see him up in heaven following Jesus around wanting to know everything. A few weeks before we left we were at the grocery store and my dad and little sister were walking down the marshmallow isle and he turned to her and said "Kayci, I think heaven will smell like marshmallows." I hope it does. The memory of my dad will live on forever and his good looks will too."

Pryor says heaven is lucky to have him now.

"He really believed his military service was a calling from God," says Pryor.

Owen's daughters attend the youth ministry of the First Baptist Church in Sapulpa, the family asks any donations are either sent there or to the Blue Star Mom's organization. A captain with the guard says, four other Oklahoma National Guard soldiers were hurt in the same bomb attack as Owen, their families have also been notified.

This is Owen's daughters entire message about her father.

"My dad was a fantastic leader. ALL of his guys looked up to him. I'm a total daddy's girl. He always played basketball with me; he always tried to teach me new things about it too. He was also always the loudest person at my games :) He loved it when we won. It was so funny beacuse he played baseball as a teenager and he didn't know a whole lot about basketball so he would watch games on tv and come tell me hey Kylie try this-- I saw Shaq do it last night. :D haha. He would give somebody the shirt off his back he was just such a loving person. It was just a huge shock to us because he was just the closest thing I could think of to being a perfect solider. He always wanted to do more. He died doing what he loved. It made him so happy.

As I would say, my dad was a BEAST! :) haha My nickname for him was Ironman. I bought him a shirt and everything. There was nothing to me that he couldn't do. Now that he's gone I just want people to celebrate his life and not be sad about it forever. He wouldn't want that. He LOVED Jesus with all his heart and that's where my peace is coming from. I know exactly where he is at. I can just see him up in heaven following Jesus around wanting to know everything. A few weeks before we left we were at the grocery store and my dad and little sister were walking down the marshmallow aisle and he turned to her and said "Kayci I think heaven will smell like marshmallows." :) I hope it does. The memory of my dad will live on forever and his good looks will too. ;) Everybody says I got his looks and sarcastic abilities and my sister got his attitude and humor. He was so funny. Always made people smile... Always. Everyone will miss him but we'll see him again."


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