Cpl. Jessica Ann Ellis, 24, was killed in action in Iraq on May 11. Her funeral Mass will begin at 10:30 a.m. Thursday in St. Francis de Sales Cathedral in Baker City. Bishop Thomas J. Connolly of the cathedral will celebrate the Mass. Full military honors will follow. Inurnment will be held at Arlington National Cemetery.
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Jessica Ellis was born June 26, 1983, in Burley, Idaho. Jessica graduated from Lakeview High School in 2002. She was active in cross country, track and field and the swim team. She attended Central Oregon Community College for two years and worked for three summers as a Forest Service firefighter on the Fremont-Winema National Forest before joining the Army in 2004.
A combat medic in the U.S. Army, Jessica served in the 2nd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) on her second tour of duty.
During her military career, she earned the following awards and decorations: Bronze Star Medal, Posthumous; Purple Heart, Posthumous; Army Commendation Medal; Army Good Conduct Medal; National Defense Service Medal; Iraq Campaign Medal; Meritorious Unit Citation; Global War on Terrorism Service Medal; Army Service Ribbon; Overseas Service Ribbon; Combat Medical Badge; Combat Action Badge, Posthumous; and Weapons Qualifications, M4, expert.
Jessica is remembered as an extraordinarily positive person, selfless and caring of everyone.
She is survived by her parents, Steve and Linda; brother Cameron and his wife, Irena; and sister, Amanda.
She was preceded in death by her grandfather, Robert Poder.
A memorial fund in honor of Jessica Ellis has been established at Fisher House Foundation, 1401 Rockville Pike, Suite 600, Rockville, Md., 20852. Information regarding Fisher House Foundation and online donations may be found at www.fisherhouse.org. Memorial contributions in her name may also be made through Coles Funeral Home, 1950 Place St., Baker City.
La Grande Observer – Obituaries for the day of May 20, 2008