News Releases

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Isakson Mourns Georgia Soldier on Senate Floor
Ellijay Resident Had Written of His Commitment
To Spreading Freedom With His Service in Iraq

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) today delivered a tribute on the Senate floor honoring the life and legacy of 1st Lt. Noah Harris of Ellijay ,

Harris, 23, died Saturday at an army medical center in Baqubah , Iraq , after his Humvee was attacked by rocket-propelled grenades while patrolling in nearby Buritz.

Harris was a December 2003 graduate of the University of Georgia . A member of the university's Army Reserve Officers Training Corp, Harris went to Fort Benning following graduation to train for his January 2005 deployment to Iraq .

Isakson's remarks are below:

"I rise today to speak about an email sent to me in May of this year. It said the following:

'Our presence here is not just about Iraq . It's sending a message to the oppressed peoples of the world that freedom can be a reality. Freedom is the greatest gift that we, the United States , have been granted and as such it is our responsibility to spread it. For it to become a permanent fixture in our future and our children's future, we must give our all to those that desire it.'

"Mr. President, that's an email to me from First Lieutenant Noah Harris of Ellijay, Georgia from Baghdad , Iraq . On Saturday of this past week, First Lieutenant Harris died in the service of his country and the democracy and freedom that his email to me expressed far better than I am capable of doing.

"Noah Harris served as an intern in Congressman Deal's office two years ago, which is where I had the occasion to meet him. When I received his email, I sat down at my desk in my office, and I wrote him a note thanking him for his service to his country and his fellow man. This morning I rise to pay tribute to the life that's been given on behalf of the greater good.

"Noah Harris is the type of young man that serves without desire for a credit or a claim in Iraq today, but on behalf of his country and everything that we stand for. At the age of 23, he embodies the hope of the future, and his sacrifice in fact ensures that future for others will be brighter.

"He captained his high school football team, was never beaten in the state in wrestling, went to the University of Georgia , and captain of the cheerleaders at that institution. Came to Washington to serve as an intern and shortly after the 11th day of September 2001, struck as all of us were by the tragedy of that day, Noah Harris volunteered to serve in the United States military, and for the greater good of the people of the world.

"On Saturday morning or Saturday at noon of this week in Ellijay , Georgia , I and hundreds of other Georgians will pause in the Northwest Georgia Mountains to pay tribute to the life of Noah Harris.

"I am privileged and pleased to stand on the floor of the United States Senate today in advance of that and acknowledge the thanks I know on behalf of this Senate, all that serve in this Congress, and our president for the life, the times, the service, and the gift of First Lieutenant Noah Harris."  

Please click here to listen to the statement or click here to watch the statement.