Awards and Decorations
Army Achievement Medal,
National Defense Service Medal,
War on Terrorism Service Medal,
Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon,
Special Forces Tab,
Special Operations Divers Badge.
He was posthumously awarded the
Global War on Terror Expeditionary Medal,
and Meritorious Service Medal.
He is survived by his wife, Athena, of Los Angeles, Calif.; mother, Karen, and sister, Shannon, of Redondo Beach, Calif.; father, Frank, stepmother, Tricia, and stepsister Angelia of Parkville, Md.
His military education includes the Warrior Leader Course, Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course,
Basic Airborne Course; Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape Course; Special Forces Qualification
Course, and the Combat Diver Qualification Course.
Joseph F. Curreri, swimming for Loyola Blakefield in 1997,
dives into the pool at the start of 200-yard individual medley,
which he won with a time of 1:57:90. He was a four year varsity letter winner in swimming and founded his high
school water polo team.
(Sun photo by Kenneth K. Lam / October 30, 2007)
Operation Enduring Freedom Philippines
Staff Sgt. Joseph F. Curreri, 27, a Special Forces communications sergeant assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Fort Lewis, Wash., died in an accidental drowning incident at Siet Lake while deployed to the Southern Philippines region near Panamao, Republic of the Philippines.
He was deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom Ė Philippines. This was his first deployment in support of the Global War on Terrorism.
The Team was helping to train Philippine army soldiers in their fight against an insurgency.
"It's very, very honoring to be his dad right now," Frank J. Curreri Jr.,
Joseph's father, deeply affected, said in response to what he said were numerous messages of condolence from around the country. "I'm just starting to realize how many people he touched. For a man of his size and strength, his compassion and gentleness will floor you."
The elder Mr. Curreri struggled with his composure as he recounted what he understood to be the circumstances of his
son's death, which occurred at the conclusion of an arduous, 11-hour scuba training mission. His son, who he said swam "like a dolphin," had "grabbed a snorkel" and jumped back into the water to retrieve some items he had accidentally dropped.
"Somehow he misjudged where they were, and as he was trying to resurface he blacked out," Mr. Curreri said. "He faded back down, and he drowned."
Curreri was born and raised in the suburbs of Baltimore. He was a four year varsity letter winner in swimming and founded his high school water polo team.
Upon graduation from high school,
Curreri attended the University of Southern California. While at USC he earned a Bachelor of Arts in History, was a
four year varsity letter winner in swimming, and was the captain of the Trojans swim team during his senior year. Additionally, he served as the Executive Vice President of USCís Student Athlete
Academic Council in 20002001.
After graduating from USC, Curreri worked as a history tutor, swim coach, and recruiting coordinator for a recruiting agency in El Segundo, Calif.
Return To Index
from USASOC, SF List and SFA used in this Article