EODMU 11 Honors Fallen Comrade

OAK HARBOR, Wash. (NNS) -- Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 11 held a memorial service for a fallen shipmate, Nov. 27, on board Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 1st Class (EWS) Kevin R. Bewley, 27, was killed Nov. 5 when a rocket-propelled grenade exploded after impacting his vehicle while he was conducting operations in Salah ad Din province, Iraq.

"Kevin Bewley was an American fighting Sailor. Kevin Bewley was a warrior," said Cmdr. Joseph DiGuardo, EODMU 11 commanding officer. "Among warriors, he stood out, not because of his stature or his physique, but because of his character, one built on courage and conviction."

Bewley, affectionately known as "KB" by his shipmates and friends, is the sixth EOD operator from EODMU-11 to be killed in action in Iraq.

Some of Bewley's shipmates from EODMU 11 spoke at the ceremony. Master Chief Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician (EWS) Dale Rock read letters from Bewley's team members who are still serving in Iraq. Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 1st Class (EWS) Brian Stanley shared three stories that showed Bewley's personality and character and focused on his loving relationship with his daughter.

In front of the stage was a set of boots, Bewley's dog tags, a rifle and a helmet with photos of the fallen Sailor. The command presented a shadow box, displaying artifacts that symbolized the Sailor's accomplishments, to Bewley's brother, Patrick, who was in attendance to represent his family. Bewley was also posthumously awarded the Bronze Star with Valor and a Purple Heart. Bewley's teammates in Iraq also renamed their camp in his honor.