Fallen: September 1, 2003
Army Staff Sergeant Joseph Camara was a member of the U.S. Army National Guard in Cranston, RI and was assigned to the 115th Military Police Company. He became a RI hero on September 1, 2003 when his vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device on Main Supply Route Tampa, south of Baghdad, Iraq.
The colleagues of Staff Sergeant Joseph Camara remember him as a quiet, funny man who had a calming effect on the people he encountered in his four years as a patrol officer with the New Bedford Police Department in Massachusetts.
“Those are tough qualities to find,” said a Police Department spokesman at the time. “He was an exceptional partner,” recalled a fellow Officer. “He had no qualms about going back and serving his duty in the military,” continued his comrade. “He had put his time in and was ready to retire but he went back and he had a job to do” are the sentiments shared by another friend and Officer about his decision to return to the armed forces.
He started his career in the police department late at the age of 36 after he witnessed what was happening in the city and felt that he could make a difference. Another interesting fact about Joseph is that he loved Christmas. At parties, he would be the man in the Santa hat, starting a conga line, his friends recall. Joseph also was an avid gun collector who loved hunting, fishing, and boating. He enjoyed taking self-defense classes at Kwon’s Tae-Kwon-Do and loved being with his children and dogs.
Staff Sergeant Camara was one of two soldiers who were killed when their vehicle was struck by an improvised explosive device on Main Supply Route Tampa, south of Baghdad, Iraq on September 1, 2003. He is survived by his wife and three children.
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