SGT Elijah T. Wong

SGT Elijah T. Wong


Hometown / City: MESA, AZ MARICOPA
Date of Death: Monday, February 9, 2004
Conflict: Operation Iraqi Freedom (Iraq)
Branch: U.S. Army
Rank: SGT

Birth: Aug. 10, 1961
Death: Feb. 9, 2004, Iraq

Sgt. Elijah Tai Wah Wong of Mesa, Ariz., is remembered him as a quiet man dedicated to his family, his work and the military. A quiet but funny man, Wong also had a deep passion for his work both in the county and in the Guard. He worked in adult probation for Maricopa County. He worked his job because he believed it. Eli felt this was his contribution back to society and he was in Iraq because he believed in that role, too. He served in the Army since March 1984. He worked as a surveillance officer, keeping tabs on those on intensive probation. He entered an already established unit but fit in smoothly. He had the ability to just move into anywhere and be accepted. His co-workers respected him. He was a good worker. He had a calming effect, a calming yet firm approach. The National Guard armory in Coolidge has been renamed after Wong. The Coolidge Armory became the Wong Armory at a ceremony attended by the serviceman's widow, Liz Wong, and other family members and dignitaries. He was posthumously awarded a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. The son of a Chinese father and a Jewish mother, Eli lived in Israel as a teenager and served a stint in the Israeli Army. After returning home, Eli enlisted in the Arizona National Guard and rose to the rank of sergeant. He was married with three children. He was killed when a collection of unexploded ordnance, rocket-propelled grenades and mortar rounds detonated while being moved to a demolition point in Sinjar, Iraq at age 42.

National Guard
363rd Explosive Ordnance Company
Casa Grande, Arizona