Eaton, Richard S, Jr., SSG

 Photo In Uniform   Service Details
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Last Rank
Staff Sergeant
Last Service Branch
Military Intelligence
Last Primary MOS
97B-Counter Intelligence Agent
Last MOS Group
Military Intelligence (Enlisted)
Primary Unit
2003-2003, 97B, 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (3d ACR)
Service Years
1985 - 2003
Official/Unofficial US Army Certificates
Cold War Certificate
Operation Iraqi Freedom

Staff Sergeant

Four Service Stripes

Four Overseas Service Bars

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by CW3 Wendall Lawrence to remember Eaton, Richard S, Jr., SSG.

If you knew or served with this Soldier and have additional information or photos to support this Page, please leave a message for the Page Administrator(s) HERE.
Casualty Info
Home Town
Last Address
Not Specified

Casualty Date
Aug 12, 2003
Non Hostile- Died of Illness, Other Injury
Illness, Disease
Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF)
Location of Interment
Grove Street Cemetery - New Haven, Connecticut
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Not Specified

 Official Badges 

Army CID 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment

 Unofficial Badges 

Knowlton Award

 Military Association Memberships
GWOT FallenFallen Warriors of The Army Reserve
  2003, GWOT Fallen [Verified]
  2012, Fallen Warriors of The Army Reserve [Verified] - Assoc. Page

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

Combat Action 1st Award

 Unit Assignments
323rd Military Intelligence Battalion3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (3rd ACR)
  1998-2003, 97B, 323rd Military Intelligence Battalion
  2003-2003, 97B, 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment (3d ACR)
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  2003-2004 OIF/Transition of Iraq (2003-04)
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity

SSG Richard S. Eaton Jr.

Died in Iraq War

Calling Richard S. Eaton Jr. of Guilford “my brother,” a former colleague in the U.S. Army’s Intelligence and Security Command said the soldier, special agent and counter-intelligence specialist “literally wrote the manual by which the Army intelligence community now conducts worldwide missions.” Another called him “a bookworm” who could be counted on for answers to any question dealing with intelligence protocols and practices. A field commander in Iraq, still mourning the death of the 37-year-old staff sergeant there, said his “professionalism educated us all.” Another colleague, writing from Asia, said he was stunned by Eaton’s insistence on joining the war effort because a serious back injury — incurred in Honduras — “could have kept him out of it.” A former naval officer and scholar called him a “thinking man’s patriot.” Still others said he was a hero, enduring any hardship to successfully prosecute a mission.

Eaton, a “soldiers’ soldier,” died of apparent heat stress and dehydration August 12 after returning from a mission near Ar Ramadi, Iraq. His family learned Tuesday that the Army will award him the Bronze Star for valor. Born in New Haven, CT February 9, 1966, he was the son of Richard S. and Sharon Noble Eaton. He lived in that city, Wallingford, Old Lyme and, for 29 years, in Guilford.

Before leaving for Korea in a civilian position with the U.S. Air Force, he lived in Alexandria, VA. He attended the Wooster School in Danbury, CT and graduated from Guilford H.S. in 1985. Shortly after negotiating an assignment to Military Intelligence — a long-held dream— Eaton enlisted in the U.S. Army. He received basic training at Fort Dix, NJ; and prepared to be assistant agent and special agent at Fort Huachuca, AZ. Serving 13 years on active duty, and five in the Army Reserves, he participated in missions in Korea, The Philippines, Honduras, El Salvador, Panama and in the U.S. He left full-time Army service in 1998, joining the Reserves and working as a civilian on intelligence programs with the Department of Defense, Department of the Army and government contractors. He was assigned to a U.S. Air Force security post in Korea when his Reserve group, the 323d MI Battalion at Fort Meade, MD, was activated for the war in Iraq. According to the Army, he held “positions of increasing responsibility in the intelligence community” and in “support of various joint contingency operations.” During the war, he became attached to the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, conducting missions in the so-called Sunni Triangle.

Staff Sergeant Eaton was recognized repeatedly “for exemplary achievement during his service,” and with awards and decorations including the Army Commendation medal with three oak leaf clusters (4 awards), Achievement Medal with one Silver and Oak Leaf Cluster each (7 awards), and Good Conduct Medal (3 awards). Also, the National Defense Service Medal with star device, the Army Superior Unit Award, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with two devices, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon (5 awards) and the Expert Marksmanship Badge with bars for rifle, pistol and grenade.

A varsity soccer player in high school, in Honduras he coached a children’s soccer team to second place in national competition. Also, as a volunteer, in Korea he taught English to adults. He attended Southern Connecticut State University and UCONN. A member of the First Congregational Church in Guilford, he is survived by his parents, military brothers and sisters, friends and beloved family.

The funeral will be Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Guilford church. Burial, at a family plot near the gravesite of his ancestor, Civil War General Amos Beebe Eaton, will be private.

Contributions in lieu of flowers may be made to the Guilford Public Library, Park Street, Guilford, CT 06437; or to aid families of soldiers, the Army Emergency Relief Society, DPCA Building 3179, Attn: ANNMEPEFA, Fort Meade MD 20755-5078.


Richard Eaton Jr. Memorial Collection

Rick and Sharon Eaton established the SSG Richard S. Eaton, Jr. National Security Collection in 2003 in loving memory of their deceased son, SSG Richard S. Eaton, Jr., a Counterintelligence Special Agent and battalion training officer in the U.S. Army Reserves. At the time of his death on August 12, 2003 at Ar Ramadi, Iraq, he and his team of specialists from the 323rd Military Intelligence Battalion were assigned to the 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry from Fort Carson, CO. His team successfully operated in a large area of northwestern Iraq from Fallujah, in the Sunni Triangle, to Hit, Iraq and the country's borders with Jordan and Syria.

SSG Eaton, knowing from an early age the exact job he wanted in the Army, enlisted in 1985. He preferred to work in the field and was a highly decorated soldier for his missions and counterintelligence work in South Korea, Honduras, the Philippines, Panama, Fort Hood, TX and Fort Meade, MD.  SSG Eaton received two, posthumous Bronze Stars and the prestigious Thomas Knowlton Award from the Military Intelligence Corps Association. His research and writing work for new Counterintelligence Policy and Procedures for the Army's G-2 Counterintelligence Division (the most radical revision since 1949) has merited him a 2004 nomination to the Military Intelligence Hall of Fame at Fort Huachuca, AZ.

The fund and collection, which includes some books from SSG Eaton's personal collection, continue to grow. The collection is available to the University of New Haven community, and, via interlibrary loan, to anyone with a valid library card.

Although the books in this collection are in various places on the library shelves, depending on the Library of Congress classification number for their specific subject, all can be retrieved in the library online catalog by doing a keyword search for "Richard S. Eaton."  Or, you can use this link to open the library's catalog and have the search conducted automatically. 

The library's online catalog is accessible from the library's home page.

The item's location in the library, its call number and status (whether the book is charged out to anyone) are shown in the library's online catalog on the line underneath the title.  The URL icon at the far right hand side indicates a connection to an online resource which you reach two ways: by clicking directly on the symbol, or by clicking on the title and then on a "Linked Resources" tab on the screen. 

For help researching this and other topics ask for assistance at the Information Desk, call us at (203) 932-7189, or e-mail us.  We will be pleased to help you.

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