Samuel T. Watts of Wheaton would have celebrated his twenty-first birthday today.
Army specialist Watts died Saturday, May 19 in Bethesda, MD of injuries sustained in an April 25 explosion while serving in Afghanistan. He was 20.
He was born August 14, 1991 in Elmhurst to Thomas and Susan Watts.
He attended and graduated from in 2010. He was an avid BMX biker, a student at Technology Center of DuPage in Addison in the Fire Science program. He hoped to serve as a fireman after his service in Afghanistan.
He joined the Army in July 2010 as an Infantryman. He joined the 1-508th PIR in November 2010. This was his first deployment to Afghanistan, according to a release from the 82nd Airborne Division.
Sam Watts is survived by his parents, Thomas and Susan Watts; two sisters, Sarah and Abigail; a brother, Andrew; his paternal grandmother, Ruth; his maternal grandfather, Paul; and many aunts, uncles, cousins and friends.
"Sam was a really, really good guy and well loved in our community. We are so proud of what our son has done and are truly humbled by the outpouring of prayers and affection," Watts' mother Susan Watts said in a in May. "We would like to thank everyone for their thoughts, prayers and support."
Capt. Mike Kelvington, Bravo Company Commander with 1-508th PIR said in a statement, "Sam was a guy you wanted on your team; he was a fighter... From being an expert on the M240 Range with his assigned weapon to defying the odds when all the doctors said he shouldn't have lived; this long, he fought all the way to the end."
In remembrance of Spc. Samuel Watts on his birthday, we ask family and friends to share their memories of him and words for his loved ones in the comments.