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Air Force Staff Sgt. Timothy L. Bowles (1984-2009)

Air Force Staff Sgt. Timothy L. Bowles (1984-2009)

24, of Tucson, Ariz.; assigned to the 3rd Logistics Readiness Squadron, Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska; died March 15 of wounds sustained when his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device.

Tucson High grad killed in Afghanistan

By Sheryl Kornman

Tucson Citizen

Tucson High School graduate Timothy Bowles, 24, was killed in Afghanistan on Sunday after he volunteered to take the spot of a “comrade who was ill,” said his father, retired Air Force Master Sgt. Louis Bowles.

Bowles, an Air Force staff sergeant, was sent to Afghanistan in November, his father said.

It was his first tour in a war zone. He was a fire engine mechanic, the senior Bowles said.

“He volunteered to go on that mission that day to take the place of a comrade who was sick. I just learned that today (Monday),” he said.

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Bowles was assigned to the 755th Air Expeditionary Group’s Nangarhar Provincial Reconstruction Team in Jalalabad, his father said. His home base was Elmendorf Air Force Base near Anchorage, Alaska.

Louis Bowles said his son was sent to Afghanistan at the same time his sister’s husband was sent to Iraq.

The senior Bowles said his son worked at the Tucson Medical Center cafeteria while taking classes at Pima Community College for a year after his 2002 graduation from Tucson High.

“He never said what he was studying.”

When Timothy enlisted in the Air Force, Bowles said he was “stunned” but “I was all for it.”

He said Louis confided in his mother, Lisa, that he was unhappy at times growing up, as his father left for one deployment after another.

He didn’t understand his father’s military career was what took him away from home.

“He didn’t comprehend why I had to leave. He thought, ‘Dad was mad at us,’” he said.

In addition to his parents, who now live in Glorietta, N.M., he is survived by his older sister, Heather Ketchmark, who lives at Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia.

Timothy Bowles would have completed six years in the Air Force on May 13, his father said.

Fallen airman was ‘always unselfish’

The Associated Press

As a youngster growing up on base, Staff Sgt. Timothy L. Bowles took a special interest in elderly veterans who attended chapel services on Sundays.

He made a point of paying attention to them and assisting them if they needed help, said his father, Air Force retiree Louis Bowles. “He was loving and loyal, a son you could trust.”

Bowles, 24, born in Anchorage, Alaska, and raised in Tucson, Ariz., died March 15 near Kot after his vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to Elmendorf Air Force Base and volunteered for his final mission to take an ill colleague’s place on patrol.

“That was Tim,” Air Force retiree Louis Bowles said of his son’s offer to fill in for someone. “He was always unselfish, wanting to help people any way he could.”

Bowles graduated from Tucson High School in 2002 and attended Pima Community College before joining the Air Force.

“Raised in a military family, he knew the cost of freedom. He did not falter and he did not fail,” said Col. Richard Walberg.

He also is also survived by his mother, Lisa.