Brian Lee Ware: Plaistow soldier dies in Rt. 125 car crash

By SHAWNE K. WICKHAM Sunday News Staff

A 29-year-old soldier from Plaistow, home just four months from duty in Kuwait and Iraq, was killed in a car crash Friday evening on Route 125 in Brentwood. Last night, the family of Brian Ware gathered at his parents’ Salem home to remember a young man with a contagious smile who loved being a new father and who had dreamed of being a police officer. Spc. Ware was an Army Reservist with the Rochester-based 368th Engineering Battalion’s A Company that returned in March after a 13-month tour in the Middle East. New Hampshire State Police said Ware was driving southbound on Route 125 shortly before 8 p.m. Friday when his Isuzu Rodeo crossed the center line and collided with a Dodge Caravan. Ware was taken by ambulance to Exeter Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The driver of the van, Nadine Bouchard, 43, of Brentwood was airlifted to Boston Medical Center, according to state police. A nursing supervisor at that hospital last night said she was not allowed to give out any patient information. Last night, Ware’s wife, Tammy, tearfully remembered the man to whom she had faithfully sent care packages throughout his overseas tour, laced with the scent of her favorite perfume, Wings. Always in those packages: The latest photos of their little girl, Akasia, born last September 30. Joys & tragedies Tammy was pregnant when Brian left for Kuwait. But he was here when Akasia was born, called home due to another family tragedy, the death of Tammy’s brother. He spent 14 days stateside, and then went back to his unit, which built a border crossing in Kuwait and roads into southern Iraq. Tammy Ware wept as she thought of how her little girl will grow up never knowing the daddy who so fiercely loved her — and her 6-year-old stepbrother, Connor. What will she tell her daughter about her dad? “That he loved her more than anything. He wanted her so bad. He said he wanted a mini me, and he got her, because she looks exactly like me,” she said, crying. His family remembers Brian Ware as a fun-loving guy who was loyal to those he loved. “His smile, it was contagious; it always brought a smile to everybody else’s face,” his big sister, Kim Harcrow of Manchester, recalled. “He was always a fun guy to be around, always there for you. He always had your back covered.” Something happened But his family said something in him had changed when Brian came home. “He’s not the same guy as when he left,” Harcrow said. “I don’t know. Something happened over there.” “He just was edgy, like post-traumatic stress. He just couldn’t get images out of his head, of the guys that were killed over there.” Tammy Ware said her husband “was having a hard time, but he was OK.” Brian’s mother, Linda Ware, said her son will have a funeral with full military honors. She said he could have been buried in Arlington National Cemetery but the family doesn’t want that. “He’ll be buried in the family lot in Salem,” she said last night. She said her middle child was “kind, sweet, a good kid,” who liked to ride bikes and four-wheelers. “Typical little boy things,” she said. 1st Sgt. William Downs from the 368th has known Brian Ware for 14 years. Downs, who is from Barrington, said his friend was proud to serve his country. “We called him up and said we’re getting mobilized, do you want to come? He said yes.” “He didn’t hesitate in the least.” Downs said his family meant “everything” to Ware. “That’s all he talked about when he got back (to Iraq). He showed the pictures of the baby all over the place. He was extremely happy.” He agreed Brian was having trouble re-adjusting to civilian life, but said that’s not unusual. “A lot of guys were tense when they got back. It takes as long six to eight months once you’re back to get out of it. My wife says I’m still over there.” Downs saidWare operated heavy equipment for the 368th. “He was very dedicated to the service, and worked extremely hard over there,” he said. “Nobody had any days off for the first six months.” Downs said his unit never got the glory of the combat troops. “We’re engineers and no one ever writes about all the work the engineers and MI (military intelligence) people did to help the people out there.” But Ware, he said, “Was proud to be in our unit.” Pain & guilt Downs said he’s having difficulty handling his friend’s death, even as he tries to comfort his family. “It is a horrible tragedy,” he said. Ware suffered a painful elbow ailment while overseas, and had to undergo surgeries, but doctors couldn’t determine the cause. His sister said she thinks he felt somehow guilty because his injury was not war-related. Whatever the cause, the injury seemed to put an end to Ware’s dream of becoming a police officer. He had gone to Hesser College and earned a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice and business management. But he had recently been told the injury could keep him from qualifying for the job he wanted so badly, Harcrow said. Ware was working for a chemical company in Middletown, Mass., and doing some masonry work with an uncle on the side. All over the place He had come home from work on Friday, stopped home to change, and then gone to the Rochester Reserves center to undergo some required medical tests, according to Sgt. Downs. He was on his way home from there when the crash occurred. Harcrow said the medical examiner told the family there was no alcohol involved in the crash, but said police had told him Ware was “driving funny and all over the place” just before the crash. She said there were skid marks at the accident scene. “We don’t know if he fell asleep or maybe had some sort of medication reaction. We don’t know,” she said. Harcrow said his sergeant told the family Brian was “extremely tired” but otherwise acting normal when he left the Reserves center. Another tragedy Ware is the second member of his unit to die in a car crash since they returned home. Nicholas Meier, 21, of Andover, died on March 29 in a Boscawen crash on Route 4. Downs said it’s difficult to deal with this kind of a loss after the Reservists had made it home safely. “There is no sense in it,” he said. “None.”

Source:  New Hampshire Sunday News (Manchester, NH) – Sunday, July 11, 2004


Comments

Brian Lee Ware: Plaistow soldier dies in Rt. 125 car crash — 1 Comment

  1. Sitting here looking back at all my dads stuff makes me so proud of what he has done for my mom as when her brother passed away and when I was born I really wish he was still here to watch me grow up into a young lady. My nana always tells me how much he loved me and how much he wished for a little mini of my mom. Everyday I think about you… and every day I miss you more and more, I hope you realize how much I love you daddy… Ill see you again one day <3 <3

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