Remembering the Life and Memory of...
SGT Dominick M. Pilla
Hometown: Vineland, NJ.
Died: October 3rd, 1993 in Mogadishu, Somalia, Operation Gothic Serpent.
Unit: Company B, 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Ft. Benning, Ga.
Incident:Killed whilst attempting to rescue a fellow Ranger.
Posthumously awarded the Bronze Star with Valor Device and Purple Heart.
Birth: Mar. 31, 1972
Death: Oct. 3, 1993
Folk Figure. He served as a Sergeant in Company B, 3rd Battalion, of the 75th Ranger Regiment of the United States Army. He was killed in Mogadishu, Somalia, on October 3, 1993, with several others, including 5 others from his regiment, and over 1,000 Somalians, in the war to try and overthrow dictator, Mohammed Farah Aidid. Aidid was finally gunned down in 1996. The story was the basis for the 2001 film, "Black Hawk Down."
Sacred Heart Cemetery
New Jersey, USA
Sgt. Dominick M. Pilla, 21, of Vineland, N.J., assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment in Fort Benning, had zest: No smoking, no drinking, vigilant against flab but a lover of fun.
"He was a real hell-raiser. He was a real card," said his mother, Diane Pilla. "He loved life."
His father, Ben Pilla, a Vietnam War veteran, gave the son big shoes to fill. That's why Dominick chose the elite Army Rangers, his family said. Still, Pilla figured when he got out, and it would be soon, he would angle for a job at the FBI, or the Drug Enforcement Administration.
"He always wanted to be special," said his older brother, Frank, 23. "He wanted to be one of the few, not one of the masses."