The Bronx Chronicle Veteran of the Week

Staff Sergeant Christopher W. Dill

Award: Veterans’ Hall of Fame

Year: 2005

Inductee was nominated by Former Senator Mary Lou Rath

Staff Sergeant Christopher W. Dill, a Buffalo firefighter from the Town of Tonawanda, could have volunteered for reserve duty in Missouri instead of risking deployment in Iraq. However, according to his father, Bill, “There wasn’t a chance he was going to let that happen. He wasn’t a guy who was going to miss the fight.”

Staff Sergeant Dill was presented with the Bronze Star in 2004 for valor following a mission in Fallujah with Iraqi troops he had trained. He was fatally shot in Iraq on April 4, 2005, during an attack on his unit, the Rochester-based 98th Division. Also a veteran of the Gulf War, Staff Sergeant Dill was proud of the work he and his colleagues with the Mobile training team were doing in training the Iraqi army. In e-mails to his parents, he said the Iraqi troops were becoming more professional and more competent, especially after the election results gave more hope to the Iraqi people.

In addition to his first Bronze Star, Dill was awarded a Bronze Star for Valor and the Purple Heart for his actions on April 4, 2005. Other decorations include the Good Conduct Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Southwest Asia Service Medal and the Kuwait Liberation Medal.

Buffalo Fire Commissioner Michael D’Orazio summed up the sentiments of many when he said, “What makes Chris unique is that he is a brave person, very unselfish. He fought bravely for his country as a soldier and for his community as a firefighter.”

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