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  • Branch: Army
  • Hometown/City: BAY CITY, MI
  • Date of Birth:
  • Date of Death: 09-02-2006
  • Conflict: Operation Iraqi Freedom

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Honor your hero with thoughts, memories, images and stories.

  • How did you meet your spouse?

    I was a bet between friends. A friend of Eugene's was hitting on me for weeks when I was working in the mall. Eugene asked his friend, why haven't you asked her out. He replied "she wont go out with me". Eugene said I bet if you asked her she would. It's easy...I'll ask her out and she will go out with me. I was a sucker, Eugene asked me and I said yes! We were together ever since!
    What did you love most about your spouse?
    I loved his laugh. He would start laughing and he would make everyone around him laugh.
    What do you miss most about your spouse?
    I miss everything, he was a wonderful father to our children. I guess I miss that most. Seeing how he would interact with our kids! He was an amazing dad.
    What did your spouse bring to your family?
    He was great at letting me think I was in charge but really he was. He kept us tight. We was the glue that held us together.
    What was your spouse most passionate about?
    His family and friends. Then baseball.

    Melissa Alex, Spouse
  • 2005 07 03 13.02.24001

    "Anyone can be a father, but it takes a real man to be a daddy." - Anonymous Eugene was a excellent daddy, his children were his life. He was the fun parent, always wrestling with the kids, teaching them how to fish or throw a baseball. He liked to play tricks on the kids every chance he could. There was always some sort of laughter when Eugene was home. The energy that would be in our home was almost magical. Everyone was happy; our home always felt complete when he was there. Losing him has left a void that can never be filled. I am so thankful that he is the father of my children. Having our children is a daily reminder of how wonderful he was. Our children each display one or more of his strong character strengths. It's almost like he is still among us at times, it makes me smile when those traits come out in our kids. Bringing back wonderful memories of when we were complete. I am also thankful for knowing the man he was. Eugene was a loving, caring and honorable man. He would give you the shirt off his back or give you his last dollar if you needed it. He provided for his family by joining the Military soon after we had our first child. He had a love of hunting, shooting, fishing and playing baseball. His laugh was contagious without a doubt when you heard his laugh you knew it was him. He would make people come down the hall to see what was going on; then he would have them laughing too. He was a likeable guy; you couldn't hate him if you wanted to. The tragic loss of Eugene was felt by many. He will forever be missed but he will always be front and center in our hearts. Forever and Always

    Melissa Alex, Spouse
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    I was younger, but I remember my uncle very well. He was the kind of man who was always respectful, and heart of gold. I remember him always telling weird funny stories, my favorite was about a angry moose when he was living in Alaska with my aunt Missy and cousins. He showed me the world still has good, I wish I knew him better and had more to say. But I know he was an amazing man, and he helped my aunt turn into the most amazing woman I know. I know he would be proud of all her accomplishments along with their kids, who have all turned into remarkable young adults. I loved him dearly

    Kayleah M, Niece
  • My uncle was one of the best people I was blessed to ever know. He was always the life of the party and a ton of fun. Even though we did not get to see him a lot because we lived far apart, he always made me feel like one of his kids when we did get to be together. Even though we lost him way too soon I'm very blessed to have had the time I did with him. I know that he is watching over all of us.

    Amber Rolla, Niece
  • I remember him most for his love of Our Country. He was so proud to defend our freedoms that we just take for granted. He was a wonderful husband to my cousin Missy, a devoted son in law but more than anything a wonderful father and role model to his children.

    Annie Hitz, Cousin
  • For a long time there were four little girls in the family. My mother had two girls and her brother had two girls. One day, surprise! A little boy showed up. This little boy named Eugene Henry Eli Alex. The family loved him and of course why wouldn’t anyone....the only boy. Spoiled of course. The four girls would tease him and try to get him in trouble but he always knew how to pay them back. There are many stories to share about Eugene. He grew up with good values and good family. As he grew into a man, he continued those values. He loved his family very much and they loved him back. He will forever be missed. Love you Eugene. You are always in my heart.

    Kristyn Gottleber , Cousin
  • SSG Alex was one of my Troopers in Iraq. I define him as a resilient and determined Soldier who even in the face of a significant amount of adversity always kept moving forward never resigning himself to any level of self-pity. SSG Alex was recovering from the effects of an IED explosion and as a result he worked within our Forward Operating Base assisting in maintaining and improving the bases infrastructure. This was the plan that was in place until we finished our tour and returned home. However, we were extended and mobilized to Baghdad to provide security for the handover between the outgoing and incoming Division commands and had already sent some troops home only to recall them back to theater. In the face of this Eugene came into my office and said he wanted to go back to a line troop as he knew the challenges we were about to be faced with, and he felt that he needed to do more and he needed to get back to leading Soldiers. His request was granted and he led with courage and fortitude right up until the day he was mortally wounded. It was my honor to have served with him and many others like him.

    Command Sergeant Major (Retired) David Dunham,
  • Eugene was a man that I considered no only a great friend but also my brother, in every sense of the word. He was a man who would give you advice when you needed it and would also take you under his wing, even if you didn’t know you needed it. He had a knack for knowing when you needed to talk and would always make time for you. The day he died our world lost a great man. We loved him but God loved him more and brought him home.

    Christopher Ybarra, Brother in arms
  • What can I say? Truth is what can’t I say about my uncle. He was a great man, husband, father, brother, and uncle. Though I was young when we lost him, He held a spot very dear to us in our hearts. He has always been a person that I have looked up to and will always be my hero. Always had a contagious smile. You couldn’t help but want to be around him! Not a day goes by that I’m not thinking that he’s watching over me. Helps me get through my hard days. I miss him very much and love him even more for the sacrifices he made!

    Joshua Repkie , Nephew
  • Euge3

    I met Eugene through his wife Melissa. Eugene and I clicked instantly. He was like the brother I never had. We could joke and laugh together like no other, but when you were around Eugene it was hard not to laugh. His smile was infectious! He was always willing to be an ear to listen or a shoulder to cry on. He was always helping someone, which I suppose is why he kept choosing to stay in the Army and volunteer to deploy. He had men to take care of. Thanks to Eugene, Melissa and I became close friends, 20+ years and counting. He gave me a family that I would not trade for the world. He brought three beautiful children into this world and adored his wife Melissa. Everything he did, every sacrifice he made, he did to support his family. Not only his wife and children but his military family also. I am forever grateful for everything he has gave me and done for our country. He will always be a part of our family and in our hearts.

    Kim DeRosia, Friend
  • SSG Eugene Alex came to C Troop after we were extended in Iraq during the summer of 2006. He was wounded at some point earlier during the tour and had been working in the Squadron Operations Center - a relatively safe job on the base answering radios and keeping track of what was going on. But Eugene wanted to get back into the fight. And our job was to go out everyday looking for bad guys. I didn't know much about Eugene before he was in the Troop but I knew he was dedicated to his profession. He said, "Send me." And that means a lot. I was there that day. He was overwatching Soldiers on the ground who searching for the enemy. SSG Alex was manning a machinegun on his Stryker looking out for others.

    Christopher L'Heureux, Former Troop Commander
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    Melissa Alex, Spouse
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    Melissa Alex, Spouse
  • 2005 07 03 13.03.14001

    Our last summer as a family, summer of 2005. Standing on Exit Glacier in Alaska.

    Melissa Alex,
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    Man, not a day goes by when i do not think about this awesome friend and mentor. I was a SPC ready to call it quits and ETS from Camp Garry Owen, Korea, and here comes this Michigan loving SGT who pushes me to be better than what i was. I will never forget you Brother. Because of your mentorship and your friendship, i pushed myself to make SGT while i was in Korea and i was able to complete the goal of making SFC in the Army. If i had a wish, it would have been you pinning that rank on my chest. I love ya brother and i hope you're enjoying that awesome Paradise in the sky. SFC Siegfried, Brandon M. “Garry Owen”

    SFC Brandon Siegfried, U.S. Cavalry , Friend
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    Eugene Alex was born in Saginaw, Michigan. His parents were Ronald and the late, Sally Alex. He was the youngest of their three children. His siblings were Hiede and Ronda. Eugene lived in Reese for all of his childhood. He graduated Reese High School in 1993. Eugene enlisted in the United States Army on 1 May 1996. He attended One Station Unit Training at Fort Knox, KY as a 19D Cavalry Scout. He was then assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 8th Cavalry, Fort Hood, TX. Eugene married Melissa Szenay on April 12th, 1997. She and their son Austin moved to Texas with Eugene to begin their adventure as a military family. During their time at Fort Hood, they welcomed two more children, Zackery and Autumn. A PCS took him to 4th Squadron. 7th Cavalry at Camp Garry Owens, Korea, followed by an assignment with 3d Battalion, 81st Armor at Fort Knox, Kentucky. He was resigned to the 4th Squadron, 14th Cavalry, where he served with distinction in a variety of challenging positions, culmination with his assignment to C Troop 4th Squadron, 14th Cavalry, 172d Stryker Brigade Combat Team at Fort Wainwright, Alaska. Eugene deployed to Iraq in 2005, a few months into the deployment Eugene’s Stryker hit a IED. He suffered a concussion and whiplash. He was flown back home to Alaska for convalescent leave. When his convalescent leave was up. He returned to Iraq where he stood by on radio watch and working around their camp. Eugene was still having some unresolved medical issues from the blast. He stayed in this position for the remainder of his deployment. As Eugene’s Brigade was preparing to come home. The violence in Baghdad had spiraled out of control. Eugene was one of 4,000 troops ordered to stay beyond their standard one-year tour. He could have stayed in the position he was in. He was safe doing radio watch, but it wasn’t what he wanted to do. For month’s Eugene watched Soldiers roll in and out doing missions. His medical issues were resolved, the hold that kept him off a line was lifted. Eugene felt ready and wanted nothing more than to return back to the line, he loved leading Soldiers. He loved being part of a team, with determination he fought his way back to the line unit. He was exhausted with running outside of the wire. Yet, he was happy, he was back leading, he felt like he was making a difference. Eugene had a job to do, he couldn’t have more proud to be serving a long side the men of Charlie Troop. Baghdad was dangerous, the Strykers were part of the front line, clearing houses, and working neighborhood by neighborhood to bring the city under control. On August 30, 2006 Eugene was in the gunner hatch at a traffic control point. Watching over his fellow Soldiers was they were conducting inspections. A sniper shot him, in the 1 inch space opening between his helmet and vest collar. He was medically evacuated to Germany, where it was determined that Eugene was brain dead. To comply with his final wishes, his organs were donated. Eugene saved or improved the lives of six people by donating his heart, eyes, kidneys and liver. His tragic death creates a most significant professional loss for his Troop as well as a grievous personal loss for his family and friends. Eugene was more than a hero that died for his county. He was a son, brother, husband, uncle, friend and an excellent father. He had more than earned the right to never be forgotten. A person is truly never forgotten as long as their name is spoken. With the SSG Eugene Alex Memorial Highway, his name will be spoken often. Keeping him alive in the hearts and minds of all who knew him.

    Melissa Alex, Wife
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    Austin, Zackery and Autumn, children