Cpl. Sean A. Osterman
by Military Wall Of Honor on Thursday, December 23, 2010 at 12:17pm
Cpl. Sean A. Osterman was on his second Afghanistan deployment and had only been in-country for a few weeks when he finished his mission. Sean was mortally wounded December 14th while leading his platoon in Helmand Province in southern Afghanistan. He was evacuated to Kandahar and then flown to Landstuhl Medical Center at Ramstein Air Force Base in Germany, where he died December 16, 2010.
Cpl. Osterman, had planned to attend college, but not before first serving the Land that he Loved. Sean graduated from Technical High School in St. Cloud in 2007. He joined the Marine Corps at age 17 on the Delayed Entry Program and went on active duty after graduation.
Sean Osterman knew from a young age he was headed to the military, but took his time researching which branch might be best for him. He chose the Marines, and it was not just because his father was a Colonel in the USMC.
He was assigned to the 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C., and was part of what is known as a recon unit, which often conducts surveillance and intelligence gathering beyond the front lines. His unit had been in Afghanistan since about Thanksgiving.
Osterman joined the Marine Corps in July 2007 and was promoted to corporal in January 2009. His awards include the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan campaign medal, Global War on Terrorism service medal and the NATO International Security Assistance Force medal.
According to a statement released by his family, he was born in La Crosse, Wis., and lived near there until age 9. The family moved to Princeton, where he attended Cambridge Elementary School, Cambridge Middle School and graduated from Technical High School in St. Cloud in 2007.
Although he had found his time in the Marines rewarding, he had indicated to friends and relatives that he would be leaving the military after completing his service and planned to attend college. During basic training and afterward, if fellow Marines had questions about the service, he would often send his father letters seeking advice for his colleagues.
His father, Marine Reserve Col. Anthony Osterman, was at one time responsible for training and equipping and manning the Afghan security forces, according to an earlier release from the U.S. military. He has since retired from the military.
His mother, Kelly Hugo, a guidance counselor at North Junior High School in St. Cloud, traveled to Germany to be with her son before he died and returned to Delaware with his body Monday night. Her Facebook wall chronicles the painful journey since learning that her son had been hurt. She explains his injuries and how his organs were to be harvested so that someone else may life and “some good” could come out of this nightmare.
Sean Osterman was the type of friendly, fun-loving student who would stop in and see his high school counselor even when he didn’t have an appointment
“Hey Hamak” is what Technical High School counselor Bridget Hamak remembers Osterman saying on those days when he was just checking in to say hi.
He was very proud of his father and of his own service in the military, said Hamak, who was his counselor during the four years Osterman attended Tech.
“He was well-liked at school and had a lot friends,” Hamak said. “I think the military was a good fit for him. He felt connected in the military. He was very excited, even when he talked about enlisting and going to basic
After a tour of duty in Afghanistan, Marine Cpl. Sean Osterman stopped back at Tech this summer to see how Hamak was doing.
“He was the same kid I remember — exuberant, friendly,” she said. “But he would say ‘ma’am’ and not even realize it.”
When Hamak saw Osterman last summer, she didn’t sense any apprehension in him about his pending second deployment, she said.
“He was just so proud of what he was doing. That’s what sticks in my head,” she said. “It’s unfortunate what happened, but he knew that this is what was for him.”
In addition to seeing him last summer, Hamak also bumped into Osterman at a St. Cloud-area bookstore in October.
It was about a month before Osterman would begin his second tour.
In addition to his parents, he is survived by sisters Katie and Olivia Osterman, both of Virginia Beach, Va., and two other siblings, Elijah and Sarah Pruka, both of Princeton.
A funeral service is planned for Fort Myer Chapel with internment at Arlington National Cemetery. A local memorial service will be planned in the near future, according to a statement from Hugo.