A Minco soldier and police officer who died in Afghanistan this week was mature beyond his age and inspired his fellow soldiers with his work ethic and leadership, a fellow soldier said Friday.
Sgt. Mycal L. Prince, 28, died Thursday after his unit was attacked by insurgents with small arms and rocket-propelled grenades in the Saygal Valley in Afghanistan. Prince is the 11th member of the Oklahoma National Guard’s 45th Infantry Brigade Combat Team to die in Afghanistan since July 29, and the 12th Oklahoman overall to die in that time period. Prince leaves behind a wife and two daughters. Family members said Friday they were not yet ready to talk about his death. He was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 179th Infantry. Dustin Stowell, 27, of Chickasha, served in Prince’s company for three years. The two deployed together to Iraq in 2008. Stowell is no longer a member of the Guard. “He was the guy that helped recruit me into the National Guard four years ago,” Stowell said. “He was an outstanding leader. He did everything to be the model soldier.” Stowell said he looked up to Prince, and joined the Guard after hearing his stories about helping with recovery efforts in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. “I guess I missed the part where it sucked, and it smelled bad,” Stowell said. “All I heard was him make what sounded like a crappy situation sound like a lot of fun. I was hooked. If it hadn’t have been for him, a part of me wouldn’t be the person I am today. He helped me cross that bridge from being a 22-year-old kid who didn’t know what he wanted to do with his life to be someone who knew what he wanted out of life. He encouraged me to be something beyond myself.”
‘He had things together’In his civilian life, Prince was a police officer in Minco. Police Chief Phil Blevins said he had been on the force for 2 years. “When I became police chief here in Minco, he was the first officer that I hired,” Blevins said. “He was one of the most professional and squared away young men I’ve ever met. He had things together in his family life, in his professional life. It’s unbelievable for a man who is 28 how mature he was in all areas of his life.” Stowell noticed the same qualities serving with Prince in the Guard. Another member of their company, 1st Lt. View/sign the guest book
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