Army Sgt. Anthony O. Magee
Died April 27, 2010 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom
HATTIESBURG — Sgt. Anthony O. Magee, 29, of Hattiesburg, returned home for the final time when a Kalitta Charters jet carrying his flag-draped coffin touched down at the Hattiesburg-Laurel Regional Airport at 7:22 a.m. Friday.
Magee died April 27 from wounds suffered three days earlier when his unit came under indirect fire at Contingency Operating Base Kasul in Iskandariyah, Iraq. He was a member of the United
States Army’s 2nd Battalion, 69th Armor Regiment, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division from Fort Benning, Ga.
Magee is the second soldier from the Hattiesburg area killed in a 20-day span during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Spc. William Anthony Blount, 21, of Petal was killed April 7 by a roadside explosive device in Mosul, Iraq.
“This is something we should do,” said Maxine Coleman, neighborhood coordinator for the city, who stood at Pine Street and Second Avenue to pay her respects as the funeral procession passed. “He gave his life for our freedom.
“I can’t imagine what his family is going through. It could have been my son. I have kids that age.”
About 25 members of Magee’s family were at the edge of the airport tarmac Friday, one grasping a small American flag that rippled in the breeze.
The Mississippi Honor Guard Team from Jackson met Magee’s casket at the airport.
An escort of law enforcement from Hattiesburg Police Department, Forrest County Sheriff’s Office, Petal Police Department, University of Southern Mississippi and Mississippi Highway Safety Patrol, followed by a formation of Patriot Guard Riders, led the procession down I-59.
The halls of Hattiesburg High were silent Friday morning as students filed along Hutchinson Avenue to catch a glimpse of the hearse.
As Leisha Weathersby stood outside, she had nothing but kind words to say about Magee, whom she taught in her Algebra I class when he was a ninth-grader.
“He was one of the nicest people,” she said. “He was sincere and hard-working in and out of school. This is a bittersweet moment. It was an honor and privilege to teach him, and I wish I had 101 students like him.”
Magee is survived by his mother and father, Patricia and Tony Davis; three siblings; his wife, Courtney Magee; and his 5-year-old son, Kameron Johnson,
The funeral of Sgt. Anthony Magee’s will be 1 p.m. today at Shady Grove Baptist Church in Eastabuchie, with burial in Venia Park in Collins.