Cp. Benjamin Harold Neal, Orfordville (1990 - 2012)
Cpl. Benjamin Harold Neal, 21, of Fort Bragg N.C./Orfordville, WI was reborn on April 25th, 2012 in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan while proudly serving his country. Benjamin was born at St. Clare Hospital in Monroe, WI to Donald and Trisha (Ahrens) Neal on August 20, 1990. He graduated from Parkview High School in 2009, where he was active in Wrestling, FFA, and 4-H. On June 16, 2009 he proudly entered the US Army reporting to Fort Benning, GA for Basic Training and graduated from Airborne School. Cpl. Neal was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, NC and began his first deployment to Afghanistan in January 2010. Benjamin was united in marriage to Emily Blaxill on September 2, 2010 in Ft. Bragg, NC. Benjamin enjoyed his time spent with family, music and the outdoors, especially the woods behind the home farm.
Cpl. Neal’s military honors include: the Purple Heart, NATO Medal, the Bronze Star, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Stars, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, and the Overseas Service Ribbon.
Benjamin leaves behind his Brothers in Battle; his wife, Emily Ann; his mother, Trisha (who he always stood up for); his father, Donald; siblings: Bradley, Becca, Brendan, Brooke, Bridgette, all of Orfordville; grandparents, Norm & Donna Ahrens, and Harold & Agnes Neal; father-in-law, Ray Blaxill; mother-in-law, Julie Blaxill; brother-in-law, Jon Blaxill; aunts and uncles: Mindy (James) Brancamp, Kris (Kirt) Hoscheit, Georgia Erickson, Keith (Julie) Neal, Chris (Kerry) McCartney, Dennis (Beth) Neal, Mary (Bill) Leffel, Mark (Vicki) Neal, Patti (Phil) Wellnitz, Greg (Marissa) Neal, Brenda (Robert) Hobson, Heidi (Shawn) Strzok, and Angela (Scott) Shelly; cousins: Kayleigh & Elise (fiancée Jeff) Brancamp, Laura (fiancée Eric) and Brittney (fiancée Eric) Martin, Elizabeth, Emma & Eli Hoscheit, J.J (Donna) Johnson, Candace (Rod) Beggs, Neal (Kate) Johnson, Marcus (Anita) Johnson, Dustin and Kevin Johnson, Jennifer (Shawn) Wellnitz, Melissa (Adam) Perkins, Denise Neal, Jeremy (Lorna) McCartney, Jason (Shae) McCartney, Zach and Grace Neal, Michael and Shelly Leffel, Megan (Andy) Lewis, Laura (fiancée Aaron) Neal, Matthew (Sheena) Wellnitz, Dan, Samantha, Phil, April, Molly, and James Wellnitz, Dan (Dana) Neal, Rachel (fiancee Will) Neal, Renee, Justice, Mara and Jolie Neal, Michael and Ashley Draeving, Lindsy and Christian Hobson, Mikayla, Morgan and Nolan Strzok, Braden and Alexis Cook, Brody and Emma Shelly. Benjamin was preceded in death by an Aunt Jodi Martin; cousins: Michael Martin, Todd Draeving and Madeline Wellnitz.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, May 8, 2012 at ST. WILLIAM CATHOLIC CHURCH, Janesville, WI with the Fr. Kevin Dooley presiding. A private visitation will be held on Monday, May 7, 2012 from 2-4 p.m. for the immediate and military family only. A public visitation will follow from 4-9 p.m. at PARKVIEW HIGH SCHOOL, Orfordville, WI. The Newcomer-Silverthorn Chapel on the Hill, Orfordville is assisting the family.
Benjamin wished for himself, only to receive flowers. Other expressions of sympathy may be given to the Farmers & Merchants Bank in Orfordville, where an account has been set up. The money will be donated to a charity for children with special needs whom Benjamin greatly cared for.