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Download full resolution image Rose McKay and family receive the artist print of their fallen Soldier Sgt. 1st Class Joseph McKay

Artillery Troops Remember a Fallen Comrade

JAMAICA -- Rose McKay (seated at left), son Shane and daughter Tanisha (seated at right) gather July 10 with comrades from the 1st Battalion, 258th Field Artillery to receive an artist's print of their loved one killed in Afghanistan last year serving with the New York Army National Guard.

Joseph McKay was among 1700 members of the New York National Guard's 27th Infantry Brigade Combat Team that were mobilized and deployed to Afghanistan in 2008 as combined Joint Task Force Phoenix VII. Sergeant First Class McKay, Specialist Mark Palmateer from Poughkeepsie and Sergeant First Class Matthew Hilton of Livonia, Michigan were killed in an ambush on their convoy on June 26th 2008 when and Improvised Explosive Device struck their vehicle in Eastern, Afghanistan.

He was a career New York National Guard Soldier who first joined in 1977 and served continuously until his death last year. He was a naturalized American citizen from Guyana, South America and lived with his wife and two children in Queens.

Texas artist Phil Taylor and his wife Lisa of the American Fallen Soldiers Project presented Mrs. Rose McKay with a portrait of her late husband Joseph at a special ceremony at the Soldier's former armory in Jamaica Queens on July 10. The American Fallen Soldiers Project is a 501? 3 non-profit organization committed to honoring the memory of fallen military personnel by presenting the next of kin with custom portraits of their late loved one at no cost.

For more information go to www.americanfallensoldiers.com

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Dated: Fri, Apr 23, 2010 @ 14:30