In the LA Times it is quoted that Jesse Pittman "Led from the bottom" meaning "If you were in charge of Pitt, you had to do your absolute best to keep your performance level as high as his." Jesse was born and raised in the redwoods of northern California. As a young man, he spent two seasons as a wildland fire fighter with CAL Fire before he joined the United States Navy to become a SEAL commando. After completing his third deployment, Jesse volunteered to do another back-to-back. Jesse had a saying among his teammates, “I don’t run, I charge.” On August 6, 2011, Jesse was one of 31 American heroes lost in a helicopter crash over Afghanistan. Jesse died while living a life dedicated to service and conquering challenges. His next goal was to attend college and earn his bachelor’s degree. Today, JessePittmanFund.org is a non-profit organization that holds an annual 5K run and other activities in order to sponsor scholarships for young people who demonstrate their value through grit, hard work and determination. Young people with an uncommon desire to succeed. Young people who want to answer the call to service and make a difference.
Rob will be remembered as a big-hearted son, brother, friend and teammate who would do anything to support those close to him. His steadfast loyalty sent him to the sides of family members and friends at a moment's notice, regardless of his own priorities. He was a rock of support and could always diffuse a tense situation, usually dissolving a somber room into one full of laughter. Rob's quick wit, humor and sarcasm will be missed by all those who had the pleasure of laughing, usually at their own expenses, courtesy of Rob. The SEAL Motto "Never Quit" exemplified how he lived his life. Rob had a quiet humility that kept him from touting his many achievements and talents (although his proud father usually made up for this). He approached every challenge in life with intense curiosity and an astounding determination to master his next chosen task, which he inevitably did. He had an insatiable appetite for learning new things, gaining the most of all life's offerings and a genuine interest in making things better. His itch to experience life and continue learning took him around the world learning languages, mountain climbing, starting businesses, base jumping, negotiating, motorcycling, teaching, and flying. And these are just a few of his recent adventures.
On Matt's Facebook page, one posts reads,
Nicknames are given to those most beloved by us. It is that sense of admiration or fun-loving quality about the person that makes them stick. It is thus not surprising that Matt was known by many different names:
Mills (by most of his civilian buds)
Matty (his time in the Navy on the Kincaid)
ScubaSteve (apparently his nickname on the Kincaid - lol)
'Thew (by some in his family)
Millsey (on the Teams)
"Stephen Matthew Mills" (by his parents when he would get in trouble -- this was not a rare occurrence)
And most importantly, Dad/Daddy/The Old Man (by his children)
Matt was so much to so many people. He touched people across the world in a variety of contexts in his life. There was no better night that to have your arm around him for some beers. You are greatly missed my friend.
SWO (SEAL/West Coast) Petty Officer 1st Class Jesse D. Pittman, 27, Ukiah, CA
SWCS (DEVGRU) Robert James "Rob" Reeve, 32, Shreveport, LA
SOCS (DEVGRU) Sr. Chief Thomas Ratzlaff, 34, Green Forest, AK
Over the course of his career, Ratzlaff received numerous awards and decorations, including the Bronze Star Medal for Valor (four awards). Ratzlaff was also awarded the Star of Military Valor, Canada’s second highest military award for valor, for his actions in Afghanistan while supporting Canadian troops. He was only the second American so honored since World War I. Roughly 900 mourners and 110 members of the Patriot Guard Riders attended Ratzlaff’s memorial service.
An unnamed Seal who had served with him described Ratzlaff as the “fiercest officer I have worked with” and “harder than nails.” The Seal further recalled a boring night in Iraq in 2007, when Ratzlaff led in the creation of a chandelier crafted from AK-47 weapons — a chandelier that still hung fully functional in a foreign outpost at the time. He told Ratzlaff’s sons that “your father loved you two so much. Your father was a great man.” He told Ratzlaff’s wife that she had been her husband’s “anchor,” for which the SEALS thanked her.
SOC (DEVGRU) CPO Stephen Matthew "Matt" Mills, 35, Fort Worth, TX
Before he even graduated from Michigan's Petoskey High about 225 miles northwest of Detroit, Heath M. Robinson was the type of guy people could picture becoming a Navy SEAL. "He was hardworking, dedicated and loyal," athletic director Gary Hice told the Detroit Free Press. "And those are all attributes for a Navy SEAL. He was a nice young man." Robinson joined the military after high school, according to the Petoskey News-Review, and his service record shows he served in six Special Warfare Units from 2000 to 2011. Robinson's father declined to comment about his son's death when reached by The Associated Press. Petoskey Principal Jim Kanine said Robinson and his family would be remembered in prayers. "We understand that's the ultimate sacrifice a human being can make," Kanine said.
SOCS (DEVGRU) Sr. Chief Heath Robinson, 34, Detroit, MI