Michael B. Stack
Sgt. Maj. Michael B. Stack
KIA Sunday 11 April 2004 in
Al Anbar Province, Iraq
Company C, 2nd Battalion, 5th Special Forces Group,
based at Fort Campbell, Kentucky
Wednesday, April 14, 2004
Special Forces Soldier killed in Iraq
Army Sgt. Maj. Michael B. Stack, a former Lake City resident and a father of five, was remembered Tuesday as a devout Christian and family man who loved fishing and Southern cooking.
Stack, a 48-year-old Special Forces soldier, died Sunday in Iraq when his convoy was ambushed, according to his brother Cecil Stack Jr.
"We were best friends. No matter where we were in the world, we found a way to talk to one another," Cecil Stack Jr., who is retired from the Army, told The Post and Courier. "Throughout my career, I looked to Mike for guidance even though he was my younger brother."
Stack, a 1974 South Florence High School graduate, was based in Fort Campbell, Ky. His brother, who was en route there Tuesday, said the family was waiting for the U.S. Department of Defense to release more information about Stack's unit and what he was doing at the time of his death.
As of late Tuesday, the Defense Department still had not posted an official release on its Web site regarding Stack's death. A spokesman at Fort Campbell also would not release any information.
Cecil Stack Jr. recalled his brother's strong Christian faith, which he said led to the formation of a prayer group with other soldiers in his unit in Iraq. Cecil Stack Jr. said his brother was devoted to his five children, the youngest 3 years old. He said his brother also had three grandchildren.
Cecil Stack Jr. said his brother recently earned a college degree, which he hoped would help him land a job when he left the military. He also loved to fish and was an excellent cook with a flair for Southern cuisine.
"I'll miss his fried turkey at Thanksgiving. I'll miss his jalapeno corn bread," said Cecil Stack Jr., who last talked to his brother about 10 days before he died.
Despite the mounting violence in Iraq, Cecil Stack Jr. said his brother's faith in the country's mission never wavered. "I asked him about the situation and he said, 'We are doing the right thing,'" Cecil Stack Jr. said. " 'We are making a change here.' "
Stack's nephew, Ian Stack, 21, described his uncle as a loving, generous man. "He would do anything for you," he said. "I remember he always had a big grin on his face."