-- Two soldiers, one from Fort Bragg and the other a North Carolina native, died this week in Iraq, the Defense Department
Leonard D. Simmons, 33, of New Bern died Wednesday in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul after suffering a heart attack, the
a veteran of the 1991 Persian Gulf War, was assigned to C Company, 3rd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne
Division (Air Assault) out of Fort Campbell, Ky.
entered the Army in July 1990 and was stationed at Fort Campbell in March.
had been married for little more than a year and was deployed to Iraq three days before his June 1 wedding anniversary, said
his wife, Rosie Simmons. She lives in Clarksville, Tenn., with the couple's three children, two boys ages 14 and 13 and a
wife described him as a "joyful and playful," hard-working family man.
fortunate," she said by phone Friday. "I got to hear from him at least two or three times a week."
their phone conversations, Leonard Simmons didn't talk about his duties save for the weather in Iraq, his widow said. Instead
he wanted to know how his wife, a native of the West Coast, was adjusting to Clarksville.
is a graduate of West Craven High School in New Bern. In addition to his wife and stepchildren, he is survived by his parents,
three brothers and a sister.
Bern man did not have a history of heart problems, said Simmons' wife, who added she was surprised by the cause of death.
"But I'm not aware of the situation over there, and I'm not sure how he was doing physically," she said. Simmons will
be honored at a memorial service in Iraq, the Army said. His death is under investigation.