The 35th Infantry Regiment Association salutes our fallen brother, CPT Derek A. Dobogai, who died in the service of his country on August 22nd, 2007 in Multaka, Iraq. The cause of death was listed as Helicopter Crash. At the time of his death Derek was 26 years of age. He was from Wisconsin.
The decorations earned by CPT Derek A. Dobogai include: the Silver Star,
He was a member of the Recon/Scout Platoon
WIU ROTC Alumnus Killed in Iraq Black Hawk Crash
MACOMB, IL - - Capt. Derek A. Dobogai, 26, a Western Illinois University alumnus, was among the 14 U.S. soldiers aboard a Black Hawk helicopter that crashed Wednesday (Aug. 22) in northern Iraq, according to the Associated Press. All 14 soldiers were killed in the crash, which the military said was likely caused by mechanical problems.
Dobogai (Fon du Lac, WI), a member of the Western Illinois University Reserve Officer's Training Corps (ROTC), was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army on Dec. 12, 2003. He earned his Bachelor's of Science degree in law enforcement and justice administration that same fall.
"Derek Dobogai epitomized the very best of Western students and the very best of the Army's officer corps," said retired Lt. Col. Michael Cumbie, who was chair of the military science department during Dobogai's tenure. "He valued his education, excelled in his extracurricular activities and motivated those around him to achieve more in their lives. Today is a sad day for the Dobogai family and for Western."
He had a distinguished undergraduate career at Western Illinois as a member of the ROTC Bulldog Battalion. At the May 2004 commissioning ceremony, Dobogai was name the recipient of Western's Colonel Leo W. Manning Outstanding ROTC Cadet Award, which recognizes the year's (2003-2004) top graduating military science department cadet, based on academics, military commissioning with assignment into a combat arms branch or military police corps, a record of high achievement in ROTC and extracurricular and community involvement.
Following his Fall 2003 commissioning, Derek completed Infantry Basic Course at Fort Benning, GA and had began U.S. Army Ranger School May 9. Derek's mother, Lisa Dobogai, accepted the award on his behalf.
Dobogai also competed in athletics (2001-2002) at Western. He was among the top Leatherneck cross county runners and ran the steeplechase in track.
While at Western, Dobogai was ranked as the No. 14 Army ROTC cadet in the nation among more than 4,000 cadets, Cumbie said. He was a U.S. Army Ranger School graduate and a U.S. Army Airborne School graduate. He also earned the distinction as the "Lieutenant of the Year" for the 25th Infantry Division (based in Hawaii).
Dobogai served combat tours in Afghanistan as well as in Iraq.