There are many angels that help us in our lives. Friends and family that give encouraging thoughts and prayers. Occasional strangers that pass by with the forgotten manners that offer up a much needed smile or compliment. These are the most simplest things that make this world a better place for all. I hope that everyone in this world will never hesitate to be that stranger or friend to do a simple kindness. You never know how it will affect someone. We all walk round with demons on our shoulders and sad or negative thoughts, yet the simple friendliness will chase it all away to make the world bright again.
Douglas Edwin Bascom was definitely an angel that was among us. With permission from Doug’s parents, my in-laws, I am very grateful to write a small memorial in honor of Douglas. He passed on before I came into his family’s lives, but after all the stories and remembrances that I’ve heard and read over the years about Doug, I feel and know that he made the world much brighter for all that encountered him. It’s not possible to sum up a loved ones life in a few short paragraphs. I guess the main thing that I’d like you to take away from reading this is that Douglas was a lover of life. He was ready with an easy smile and happy to laugh. Even those that met him for just a moment were made fast friends with Douglas. He always left an impression with his fun loving cocky and fun personality. He has a “Fallen Heroes” dedication page that attests to how loved he was by all. Douglas was a hero in many ways. For some it was for his undying patriotism and love for the fellow marines that he helped save by being by their side and leading them in the military. For others he was a hero just by being a protective sibling, a loving laughable son, and a great friend.
First born in a family of 7 in 1979, Douglas started his life of adventure named after both his parents. Edwin, a family middle name passed from father to son,and the initials D.E.B. for his mother Debra. Douglas was able to experience life in many different lights. His father Larry was a military man and so Douglas was able to see how people lived in many different parts of the world.
Douglas spent a lot of his first years in many German villages, being able to walk the countryside hand in hand with his mother. In a favorite memory, he learned how to roller skate in the house as a toddler with a pillow attached to his sore bottom because he didn’t want to give up.
Doug was a very capable and creative young man. He always liked to finish what he started and his boyish mind was full of mischievousness. He was a leader in all things. Even as a boy he was the mastermind behind many child memories and pranks. From memories of sledding off of the house roof in the winter, to being tattled on by the neighbor that he was mooning the people in the street or lighting his farts on fire, Douglas was as giggly as could be till his mother would come by with a “trying hard not to laugh” motherly scolding.
Growing up with two younger sisters and two younger brothers, there was many chances to explore and learn. As a child Douglas loved to come home from school and sing to his sister the nursery rhymes that he learned from his teacher that day. He was always a kind and protective brother, always watching over his siblings and being there whenever they needed him. He was the brother who knew how to time his brotherly pranks and smugness with the knowledge of when a kind word was needed. Him and his brothers always had fun exploring and in one memory, being able to set up a tent inside of a red wood tree and camp.
Douglas graduated from Lakenheath High school in England in 1998 with a strong will and happy heart. He had a love for his family and a love to serve in the United States Marines. Douglas loved his father, and after witnessing him be a good military man, Doug had an early love of service. He joined the Marines n 1999 and graduated from boot camp in California. He discovered that he had an unyielding love for his country and fellowman. Every marine that encountered him had a sense of kindred ship and loyalty right away. Douglas was always a great leader, he would never ask a fellowman to do anything that he would not do himself. After proudly serving out his set of years, Douglas came back home to join the civilian community. It wasn’t too soon that he started to feel that he was out of place and wanted to be back with his fellow marines, helping to lead them and protect them. He soon returned to the marines to help fight in the war with Iraq.
Sgt. Douglas Edwin Bascom was taken from this earth to live again with his loving Father in heaven on October 20, 2004 after a bomb exploded near him while leading his team in Iraq.
It’s always hard to lose a loved one in this life and it never gets easier. One of the things about Douglas is that he was meant to be a marine. He had the heart and soul to be able to create loyalty and to be a great leader. He created a spark in others to want to do their best and to enjoy life in every way possible. He lived his life to the fullest, never holding anything back, from jesting with his family to overcoming challenges that came along, or with challenges that he created himself.
Douglas Edwin Bascom is an angel still watching over his men and his loved ones. He will still always be there whenever needed, giving comfort in the hard times without him, and continuing to guide and protect his fellow marines. Thank you Sergeant Bascom for your service and leadership. Rest in Peace dearest Douglas.
Below I’ve copied down the memorial written by his family on Findagrave.com. There it states all the rewards and medals that Douglas was given and is written better than I could ever bring forth. Thank you again Sgt Douglas E. Bascom. You will always be remembered.
This is the medallion that I made in honor of Douglas. Click Here to see the tutorial.
Douglas died as result of enemy action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He was a member of the Individual Ready Reserves, and was mobilized and assigned to 2nd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, California.
” His awards included the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Combat Action, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, National Defense Service Medal and Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and, Global War on Terrorism, Exp:, and finally two Purple Hearts.
Douglas was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He grew up in an Air Force family and graduated from high school in England while his father was stationed there. He received his Eagle Scout award in England along with the U.K. wrestling championship. He was published in an art book, and was asked to paint murals in his high school and for every event for two years he designed all the invitations.
The family was transferred to Colorado Springs in 1998. The Sept. 11 attacks upset him deeply, and he wanted to help fight the war against terror.
Douglas enlisted in the Marines on August 16, 1999 and completed his hitch, but reenlisted in order to serve as a combat replacement because he could not stand being apart from the “team”. “Sgt. Bascom was determined, goal oriented, placed himself first in danger. This made him a true Marine.”. ” He knew people in the service who were over there and he felt a strong urge to be over there protecting them.”
“Doug always went first, and he always protected the people in his care, in life and in war. He was always a squad leader and he took care of his men.” He was the first to die from a rarely mobilized sector of the military known as the Individual Ready Reserve. Debra Bascom, his mother, said “her son never hesitated when the Marine Corps called last April with his orders”. Individual Ready Reserve members are people who were honorably discharged after finishing their active-duty service, usually four to six years, but remained in the ready reserve for the rest of the eight-year commitment they made when they joined. Douglas was the first IRR marine to die in Iraq, according to a spokeswoman at Marine Corps headquarters in the Pentagon. Doug joined the Marines at age 19 and spent four years on active duty. Once he was out of uniform he began to feel out of place, knowing that thousands of Marines were fighting in Iraq. “When the Iraq war started in March 2003 his parents encouraged him to get out of the Marines and avoid the risk of combat. ” He did get out, but it bothered him,” Debra said. “He hadn’t done what he felt was the right thing. So when he got back in he told me: “Mom, I have to go because I am a Marine.” Leaving his job at a savings and loan, Doug found himself in Iraq in early September. On Oct. 17 he called home to tell his parents that he’d been awarded a Purple Heart for a flesh wound he suffered about two weeks earlier when a bullet grazed his arm. Three days later he was killed, apparently near the city of Ramadi.
Doug was committed to living life to the fullest. Every moment seemed to be filled with activities that reaffirmed his love of life. He also wanted others to share in his enthusiasm. He made every effort to make you feel loved and valued. In Doug’s life, forgiveness came easily and quickly. He loved passionately, lived life to the fullest, and gave unconditionally.
The following words were given by his uncle Andrew Miller at his funeral. “I struggle to close my remarks because I know that my few words can hardly do justice to my nephew Douglas whom we have loved so much. It is not easy to attempt to summarize a life that gave so much to each of ours. It is now our responsibility to always remember Douglas’s sacrifice and special light that he shared with each of us by measuring up to what he believed each of us to be. I always felt better than I really was when I spoke to Douglas and that was his way and I am sure some of you have felt the same.”
His parents are Larry and Debra Bascom. Brothers, Josh, Tim, and Sisters Rebecca and Jennie.