Help Honor One Soldier's Ultimate Sacrifice

Article excerpt

Byline: Dave Heun

If sad stories make you cry, get out your Kleenex for this one.

It's about Army Capt. Drew Jensen, who was second in command for his company at West Point, where Jonathon Monken was first in command.

Jonathon Monken is the son of Jon Monken, the facility director of the Norris Recreational Center in St. Charles.

"Drew was a good friend of my son, and during a deployment in Iraq, his 3rd Stryker Brigade came under attack and one of his soldiers was wounded underneath a truck," Jon Monken said. "When Drew was helping that soldier, he was shot at the base of his neck, and it resulted in him being paralyzed, with no use of his limbs."

The Jensen family in Portland, Ore., was faced with a difficult decision. In knowing he would never recover after four months on life support and undergoing surgeries in Landstuhl, Germany, Jensen requested that his life support be taken off. He died last month.

A memorial honor:

In honoring Drew's wishes, Monken said, the Jensen family has established a memorial scholarship to be given to underprivileged students who show exceptional leadership skills.

Area residents wishing to donate can do so with checks made out to the Drew Jensen Memorial Scholarship and mailed to or dropped off at the Norris Recreation Center, 1050 Dunham Road, St. Charles, IL, 60174, Attn: Jon Monken, Director.

"Prior to finishing his active duty, my son was in Kosovo for eight months and had two years in Iraq," Monken said. "Over that time, he had a close relationship with Drew, and this is something we wanted to do for the family."

Monken said Drew's wife established the scholarship fund "to honor her husband and help the family deal with his ultimate sacrifice."

The color of ribbons:

The blue ribbons have been all over Geneva in support of the football team, but the red ribbons were scheduled to come out Saturday to signal the start of the annual drug awareness program with Red Ribbon Week. …