PFC Zachary Steven Salmon, 21, of Hebron, Kentucky, died Wednesday, January 12, 2011 in Afghanistan.

He was born Thursday, August 31, 1989, in Cincinnati, OH.

He served his country in the US Army. He was a member of Troop A, 1st Squadron, 32 Cavalry, 1BCT Fort Campbell, KY.

Zachary loved being a soldier but what he loved the most was his son and his family.

He is survived by his father Steven Salmon; mother, Renee (husband Robert) Cross; son, Noah Salmon; maternal grandmother, Anna Lyons; maternal grandfather, Terry Lyons; paternal grandmother, Patricia Salmon; brother, Steven Salmon; 2 sisters, Kelsi Salmon, and Katie Maurer; several nieces, nephews, and cousins.

He is buried at Riverview Cemetery in Aurora, Indiana.

Soldier who went to Pigeon Forge High killed in Afghanistan
By Matt Lakin
Knoxville News Sentinel
Friday, January 14, 2011

Army Pfc. Zachary Salmon wanted to make his son proud.

“He was just trying to do something to serve his country and to be a good influence,” said Salmon’s aunt, Christine Craig. “He wanted to give his son something to be proud of.”

He won’t see the pride in the boy’s eyes. Salmon, a 21-year-old graduate of Pigeon Forge High School, died Wednesday while serving in Afghanistan, his family said.

Friends in Pigeon Forge plan to honor his memory today with a 6 p.m. vigil at Patriot Park. His 3-year-old son, Noah, still lives in Sevier County.

Army officials hadn’t announced Salmon’s death Thursday. Craig said two soldiers notified Salmon’s mother, Renee Lyons Cross, at her home in the Cincinnati area Wednesday night. Word spread quickly – by phone, by e-mail and on Facebook.

“He was on patrol with one of his buddies,” the aunt said. “It was just a typical patrol. Zack was the gunner. They came under small-arms fire, and Zack was killed.”

Salmon was born near Cincinnati and moved to East Tennessee with his mother at age 14, where he graduated from Pigeon Forge High School in 2008. He joined the Army in March and had been in Afghanistan since September, serving with the 1st Squadron, 32nd Cavalry Regiment of the 101st Airborne Division, his aunt said.

“It’s kind of a family tradition,” she said. “His grandfather was a Marine and got a Purple Heart in viet. His uncles have been in every other branch.”

He stayed in touch, messaging family members on Facebook and via Skype.

“His mom talked to him every day,” Craig said. “It was all new to him. He was proud to do what he was doing.”

Salmon’s mother plans to claim his body today upon its arrival at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. Services will be in Lawrenceburg, Ind., near the family home.

  • Rank: Private First Class
  • Date of birth:
  • 31 August 1989
  • Date of death: 12 January 2011
  • County: Sevier
  • Hometown: Pigeon Forge
  • Service Branch: Army
  • Division/Assignment: 101st Airborne Division
  • Conflict: Afghanistan
  • Awards: National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, and Combat Action Badge
  • Burial/Memorial Location: River View Cemetery, Aurora, Dearborn County, Indiana
  • Location In Memorial: Pillar XXV, Top Panel
  • Contact us to sponsor Zachary S. Salmon

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