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Bohr, Jeff -- 1964 - 2003


Posted By: Norman Hjelmeland (email)
Date: 5/27/2004 at 20:46:58

Gunnery Sergeant Jeffrey E. Bohr, 39, died April 10, 2003 in Baghdad from enemy gunfire while in the Middle East serving with the Marine Corps Operation Freedom in Iraq.

Mass of Christian Burial services were held Wednesday, April 23 at 11 a.m. at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church in Ossian with Msgr. Cletus Hawes officiating.

Organist was Deb Scheidel, and the St. Francis Adult Choir also provided music.

Readers were Jennifer Bohr and Col. David Bethel.

Gift carriers were Jesse Halweg, Jenna Halweg and Amanda Brannaman.

Casketbearers were Mark Bohr, Joe Bohr, Richard Bohr, Jerry Bohr, Rob Bohr and David Bohr.

Numerous military personnel were in attendance and many veteran organizations were represented.

Interment was in the Mt. Calvary Cemetery, Cedar Rapids, with military rites by the Marine Corps.

Jeffrey E. Bohr was born March 27, 1964 in Decorah, the eldest son of Edward and Jeanette (Moen) Bohr.

He was baptized and confirmed at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, attended grade school at St. Francis de Sales School and graduated from Sourth Winneshiek High School in 1982.

During his junior year of school, he enlisted in the Army reserves, and during his senior year, he had already completed his boot camp.

Following his graduation, Jeff Bohr enlisted in the regular Army. He became an Army Ranger, gained experience as a papatropper in Grenada and later served in Desert Storm.

In 1993, he tranferred to the U.S. Marine Corps base at Camp Pendleton, Calif., and soon after he met Lori Grover from Cedar Rapids, who had recently moved to California.

April 19, 1994, he was united in marriage to Lori Grover by a Justice of the Peace in San Diego, Calif.

Jeff Bohr had served as an instructor at the school of infantry at Camp Pendleton prior to being shipped to the Middle East in February of 2003.

The last company he was with was the 1st Bn 5th Reg. Alpha Co., when he was deployed this year to Iraq.

Jeff Bohr had a great love for the Marines, and cared for the young men he trained. He was an active individual who has a passion for running.

His wife had become the most important thing in his life and he wanted to retire and spend the remainder of his life with her.

Survivors include his wife: Lori Bohr; his father: Edward Bohr of Ossian; his mother: Jeanette Bohr of Lansing; four brothers: Mark Bohr of Ossian; Richard (Jennifer) Bohr of Minneapolis, Minn.; Jerry (Patsy) Bohr of Bluffton and Rob Bohr of Eldora, Iowa; five nieces and nephews; aunts, uncles, cousins and a host of friends.

Decorah Journal, April 24, 2003 Decorah, Iowa

Saturday, April 19, 2003
Ossian man killed in Baghdad

By Sarah Strandberg

From coast to coast, from big city to small-town America, the realities of war with Iraq are brought home.

Thursday night, it happened at a home on the edge of Ossian.

Edward Bohr was watering his horses at about 6:30 Thursday night when he looked up to see two Marines, Monsignor Hawes from his church and Frances Wenthold, the local VFW commander, approaching him.

"I knew automatically what it was for," he said.

His eldest son, Jeff, a gunnery sergeant with the first battalion of the Fifth U.S. Marine Division, was dead. The Marines told Edward his son had died almost instantaneously after being shot twice during a seven-hour battle Thursday outside a mosque in Baghdad. Another 22 soldiers were wounded.

"He turned 39 the 27th of March," Edward said, his voice drifting off.

"He’s gone and he’s not coming back."

Edward last talked with his son in January, but received several letters since then, including one the afternoon before the Marines arrived.

In their last conversation before Jeff left for Iraq, Edward said he’d told his son to take care of himself

"He said he’d see me when he got back."

After two decades in the military, Jeff was an experienced soldier. He’d parachuted into Grenada with the 82nd Airborne, and served in Panama, Somalia and the first Gulf War.

Jeff joined the Army Reserves as a junior in high school. He completed basic training the summer before his senior year and joined the Army full time after graduating from South Winneshiek in 1982.

After he completed his six years with the Army, he returned to civilian life, but when he couldn’t find a job, he joined the Marines a few months later.

"I think he missed it," Edward said. "He thought it would be challenging to be a Marine."


Jeff was the quiet one in the family, said his aunt, Jane Shimek of Calmar.

But when people questioned the president’s decision to go to war, Jeff would respond that George W. Bush was his CEO and that he followed his orders, she said.

Jeff also was tough, said Eric Schweinefus, whose family lived next to the Bohrs.

"Jeff was the military type. He didn’t take any crap from anybody. When he joined the service after high school, that was his niche. I really think he enjoyed it," he said.

When Jeff and Eric were growing up, their families and their neighbors all had horses

Kim Schweinefus Klocke of Waukon, Eric’s sister, reminisced about their trail rides.

"On any given day in the summer, we’d all be out riding together. At one point, there were probably 30 horses between four families," she said.

"Eric was quiet and a very tough kid. He stood up for himself and his brothers, and he’d certainly help out any of us neighbor kids if we needed it."


Edward is proud of his son and his accomplishments.

He completed a variety of special training, including learning to ski at high altitudes and swimming into ports to spot targets for fighter planes.

He once had his hands tied behind his back and was thrown into a pool of water, Edward said.

"He could tread water that way for 45 minutes."

Just before the war with Iraq, Jeff had been an instructor at the Pendleton Marine Corps Base near San Diego, Calif.

He’d told his father he would retire from the military when his current tour of duty was up in two years. Jeff had been taking classes in computer repair.


Edward said his family, friends, and the entire community have been incredibly supportive. But when he’s alone, he said his mind always returns to thoughts of his son.

The family is in the process of scheduling funeral arrangements.

Jeff’s mother, Jeanette, lives in Lansing. His wife, Lori (Glover) Bohr, is a native of Cedar Rapids.

His four younger brothers are Mark, Ossian; Richard, Minneapolis, Jerry, Bluffton; and Rob, Eldora.

Richard is a member of the Decorah Army Reserve unit and is expected to leave for Iraq next month.

Edward believes the war with Iraq is for a good cause.

"I’m happy to see those (Iraqi) people free. There’s a lot of good people that have got to be there, just like you and me. They just haven’t had the choices we have," he said.

Jeff Bohr's funeral will be in Ossian

The funeral for the Ossian man killed in Baghdad last Thursday will be held in Ossian.

Arrangements for Jeff Bohr are pending with Schmitz Funeral Home in Ossian. Burial will be in Cedar Rapids, where his wife, Lori, is from.

The Cedar Rapids Gazette reported Wednesday that Bohr will be buried in Mount Calvary Cemetery in Cedar Rapids near Lori’s mother, where Lori also plans to be buried.

A gunnery sergeant with the U.S. Marine Corps, Bohr had served in the military for 20 years. He had seen combat in Grenada, Panama the first Gulf War and Somalia.

His father, Edward Bohr, lives in Ossian and his mother, Jeanette, lives in Lansing.

Decorah, Iowa newspaper, Wednesday, April 23, 2003

Funeral services today for Ossian native killed in Baghdad

Funeral services have been set for Wednesday for an Ossian native killed in Baghdad.

Gunnery Sergeant Jeff Bohr, 39, was killed April 10 during a seven-hour battle outside a mosque in the Iraqi capital. The Marine’s unit believed either Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein or his comrades were meeting in the mosque the day Bohr was killed by a sniper.

Services will be held Wednesday, April 23 at 11 a.m. at the St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, with burial in the Mt. Calvary Cemetery in Cedar Rapids.

Bohr’s wife, Lori, is a native of Cedar Rapids, and after the war started, he wrote his wife that he wanted to be buried next to her in the family plot.

There will be a visitation at the Schmitz Funeral Home in Ossian from 3 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, April 22, where there will be a scripture service at 7 p.m.

Visitation also will be from 8 a.m. until 10 a.m. at the funeral home and from 10 a.m. until the time of the service at the church on Wednesday.

Bohr is the son of Edward Bohr of Ossian and Jeanette Bohr of Lansing. Before the war started, Bohr had been living in San Clemente, Calif. working as an instructor at Pendleton Marine Corps Base. He served in the military for two decades.

Family mourns, celebrates life of Jeff Bohr

Lori Bohr, the widow of Gy/Sgt. Jeff Bohr killed in Iraq, at center, reacts with pride as his brother, Sgt. Richard Bohr, says, "Jeff, now that you have had your last formation and are dismissed from your duties on earth, God Speed to Heaven." The Marine's father, Edward Bohr, Jr., sadness at the loss of his oldest son.

Lori Bohr, the widow of Gy/Sgt. Jeff Bohr killed in Iraq, and the Marine's father, Edward Bohr, Jr. listen as Jeff's brother, Sgt. Richard Bohr, reads: "It's the soldier, not the reporter who gives you the freedom of the press. It's the soldier not the poet who gives you the freedom of speech. It's the soldier, not the campus organizer who allows you to demonstrate. It's the soldier who salutes the flag, serves the flag, whose coffin is draped with the flag, that allows the protester to burn the flag!! The next time someone tells you that burning our flag is a right and that it's just a piece of cloth, that piece of cloth symbolizes a 6-ft., 200-pound hero that gave you that right. He's called, Gunnery Sergeant Jeff Bohr. "Jeff, now that you have had your last formation and are dismissed from your duties on earth, God speed to Heaven."      

Services for Gy/Sgt. Bohr were Wednesday at DeSales Catholic Church in Ossian. See the full story and the day in photos in next week's Ossian Bee.

Submitter is not related -- posted for the benefit of others and to honor our fallen comrade.

Testimony from a fellow Marine:

I served with Jeffrey Bohr. He was a Sergeant then and I was a Corporal with Charlie Co, 1st Bn 4th Marines from 1992 to 1996. He was a good Marine and a good man. I was sorry to hear of his passing. He always left a lasting impression on me because he was hardcore and tough as they come, but he cared about his unit, his mission and his men. I really liked your posting. Please let his family know that the Marines who served with him will never forget him, and that they should remain proud of who he was and what he stood for. The world could use a few more like Gunnery Sgt Jeffrey Bohr.

Smith, S.E.
Cpl/ USMC 0331's.


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