SAUNDERSTOWN, R.I. — At the dedication of the Saunderstown Post Office Sunday to the late U.S. Army Capt. Matthew J. August, some reflections captured him and his life.
Nathan Hancock, a West Point Military Academy classmate, looked at the post office doors, saying, “The price of this facility was paid in full with the blood of that patriot.”
“Matt led his men from the front. He never asked them to do anything he wouldn’t do. He was the first man out of the truck and he was the last man back in the truck,” he said. “Our discussions were always about taking care of the men, putting the men first,” he added.
During the event, Greg Mancini, North Kingstown Town Council president, presented a collection he culled to show the character of the August who died in January 2004 in combat in Iraq.
Although he didn’t know him, Mancini said, “I had the opportunity to read about him and I would like to briefly read to you here what I have read about Capt. August from people from Canada to Texas.”
“Thanks Buddy. You made the ultimate sacrifice while taking care of your soldiers.”
“I was under your command in Iraq and I will never forget your grace under pressure. I am not the same without you. Love you brother.”
“Matt was a wonderful and brave person and a respected leader and will be missed by everyone who knew him.”
“It was an honor to have served with Matt at Ft. Benning. He is a true hero.”
“Matt was a model citizen. He died for our freedom.”
“I had the pleasure of serving with Matt. He was always cheerful and a solid team player, more than willing to help out on any work that needed to be done.”
“Matt was a wonderful man and leader.”
“I gave Matt a job when he was young. I will never forget while most of his friends were still hours away from waking up” he was working for me.
“I was at an engineer’s ball in Korea on 2/28/04. A friend of Captain August’s requested that we all do the Chicken Dance (a favorite comical tune) in honor of his memory. Forever more I will think of his sacrifice when I hear this song.”