GUNNERY SGT. THEODORE J. CLARK - U.S. Marine Corps
Hometown / City: EMPORIA, VA EMPORIA (CITY)
Date of Death: Thursday, August 4, 2005
Conflict: Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan)
Branch: U.S. Marine Corps
Rank: Gunnery Sgt.
Unit: 1ST CEB, 1ST MAR DIV, CAMP PENDLETON, CA
Birth: Aug. 6, 1973
Death: Aug. 4, 2005, Afghanistan
Gunnery Sgt. Theodore Clark of Emporia, Virginia was born in Baltimore, where his mother had relatives. Before he was 3, his parents moved to Emporia so his father could help take care of his own father. He played basketball in his neighborhood, was involved in track at school and had a part-time job with the Winn-Dixie grocery store. At Greensville County High School, his father said, he drew the attention of recruiters from all branches of the armed forces.
He chose the Marines to serve and provide for his family and give them a better life. He had been a Marine since high school graduation and it appeared to be his destiny. Family was important to Theodore and he would call his parents in whenever he could, from wherever he was. He would always keep in touch. If for some reason he couldn't phone, he would email his wife to pass the word that "he was doing fine." When he was sent to Afghanistan he wasn't afraid. He just knew he had a job to do and he wanted to do that job as well as he could. He and his wife had two small children. Theodore was killed when the vehicle in which he was a passenger was struck by an improvised explosive device while he was conducting combat operations near Gardez, Afghanistan. He was 31.