County loses first soldier to war in Iraq
Monroe teen loses life in Monday wreck
State medical examiner files report on Reagan
loses first soldier to war in Iraq
Here, Jeremiah Savage shows off a huge Russian
50 caliber machine gun that the Iraqi military uses as one of its
many weapons. According to Savage's family, he was a "happy-go-lucky"
kind of guy who always joked around and made sure everyone around
him was in a cheerful mood, too.
An Overton County family heard dreaded news around
7:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 12 when three Marine officers arrived at
the home of Ronald and Eva Savage in Okolona to inform them their
son had been killed in Iraq near Fallujah in a town called Ar Ramadi.
Marine Lance Cpl. Jeremiah Edward Savage, 21, of Okolona,
died earlier that day after an improvised explosive devise struck
his patrol and he was struck by its aftermath. A sharp piece of
metal reportedly tore through Savage's right side and punctured
his lung. He was taken to a nearby medical site and treated for
the critical wounds, dying three hours later at around 4:40 p.m.
Iraqi time, 7:40 a.m. in United States Central Time Zone.
According to Savage's commander, 1LT David Dobb, Savage
was on what military personnel refer to as a Civil Action Mission.
"This consists of various stops at schools within
the area," Dobb said. "We hand out soccer balls, frisbees,
candy, and gum. Jeremiah loved these missions."
Dobb said that Savage fought extremely hard to stay
"When he left the scene, he was still unconscious,
but he was abnormally strong and unwilling to succumb to his wounds."
Dobb noted that Savage was well respected by his
platoon and that he put other Marines' needs ahead of his own.
"LCPL Savage was in my squad and it hurts me
deeply to know we lost a great man," he stressed. "He
always had a smile on his face and always a good story to tell.
Boy, do I sure miss him!"
Savage enlisted in the Marines in May 2001, just after
graduating from Livingston Academy. He was stationed in California.
The young soldier left for Iraq in February and was
scheduled to return in September.
Born in Illinois on October 10, 1982, he lived most
of his life in Overton County.
According to his mother, serving in the military was
instilled in him from his childhood.
"From the time he was little, whenever he wanted
a toy, it was a G.I. Joe, a tank, or a gun he reached for,"
she said. "That was just what he wanted."
Savage's mother asked her son a week before his death
if he was ready to come home yet. He replied, "No, Mom. I have
a job to do."
She said the family talked with him on Monday, May
10 for six hours via the internet and a web cam. The conversation
would be the family's last with their war hero.
Savage leaves behind a wife, Cassandra Savage, and
two children, Madison and Wyatt. He also had two step-children,
Jayden and Keyara.
Other survivors include three siblings, Nicholas Savage,
Jonathan Savage and wife, Brandi, and Chelsea Savage, and his grandparents,
Robert and Ruby Savage of Okolona and Viola Hicks of Illinois.
Many will remember him for his dedication to his family
and country, as well as his character.
Savage's sister Chelsea said of him, "Jeremiah
was a loving father, son, brother, and a dedicated Marine."
His sister-in-law Brandi agreed. "Even though
I just met Jer last year," she said, "he always made me
feel like I was part of the family. He aggravated and cut up with
me like he had known me forever."
No funeral services have been planned yet, as the
family waits for the body to be returned to the United States.
The family has found solace in their beliefs that
Savage is in Heaven now.
"He is in a better place," Eva Savage said.
"But there are still Marines over there who will remain in
my prayers until the day every one returns home."
The family told Overton County News that Savage enjoyed
serving his country, and died while fighting for what he believed
top of page
teen loses life in Monday wreck
A tragic collision two miles north of Livingston on
Highway 111 Monday afternoon, May 17 claimed the life of a Livingston
Academy senior and had traffic backed up to Livingston for two-and-a-half
According to Tennessee Highway Patrol Trooper Marty
Philpot's report, Sarah Conner, 18, of Monroe, was driving south
toward Livingston in her 1993 Pontiac Grand Am when she crossed
the center line and struck a northbound 2002 Chevrolet 2500HD pickup
truck head-on. The truck apparently swerved onto the shoulder of
the road to try to miss Conner's car, but the swerve was to no avail.
The driver of the truck, Cecil O'Daniel, 63, of Crossville,
appeared uninjured, but Conner died at the scene. Life Force air
ambulance of Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville responded to the site,
as did Overton County Ambulance Service; however, Conner was deceased
before she could be transported by either for medical attention.
She was to graduate from Livingston Academy on Friday
night, May 21. Neither vehicle carried passengers.
Trooper Philpot was still unsure of the cause of the
accident at press time.
top of page
medical examiner files report on Reagan
State Medical Examiner Charles W. Harlan, M.D., has
filed an autopsy report on George Christopher Reagan, 32, of Allons,
whose body was found April 15 in a pond near Rickman.
The report states, "This 32 year-old white male
died as the result of an overdose of cocaine. The blood drug screen
is positive for a lethal level of cocaine and benzoylecgonine (cocaine
metabolite). The blood alcohol level is 0.043 gram % ethyl alcohol,
0.022 gram % isopropyl alcohol."
The report states that a knotted clear plastic material
in the shape of a bag was found in the stomach.
The report states, "The plastic bag thus created
is devoid of material contents at the time of the autopsy."
top of page
Overton County News
415 West Main Street
P.O. Box 479
Livingston, Tennessee 38570