Keeping memories alive: Remembering Capt. David I. Lyon

  • Published
  • By Steve Brady
  • Peterson and Schriever Public Affairs

It’s been a decade since a Peterson Airman was killed in action, but his memory lives on, especially with his former colleagues. 

Capt. David I. Lyon died Dec. 27, 2013, while conducting combat operations near Kabul, Afghanistan. Lyon was deployed from the 21st Logistics Readiness Squadron here and was killed when a roadside bomb detonated near his convoy. He was one of 10 who perished in the attack, along with two NATO military personnel and seven Afghan forces. 

“As an Air Force officer, Dave was a textbook example – tremendous work ethic, selfless leader, held exacting standards and was technically astute in his career field,” said Jim Lovewell, who was a lieutenant colonel and commanded the 21st LRS when Lyon deployed. “He was also a tremendous person of character, a servant leader, and someone others gravitated toward.” 

The 21st LRS will not forget Lyon. They are planning a 5k run to mark the anniversary of his death. Following in his father’s LRS footsteps, Air Force 2nd Lt. Nate Lovewell, currently a Gold Bar Recruiter in Colorado Springs prior to his first duty assignment, is organizing the event as a member of the local Logistics Officers Association, named the Lyon LOA. Lovewell, who was 13 when Lyon died, remembers Dave from his association with his father, and the younger Lovewell is doing his part to keep Lyon’s memory alive. 

“It’s the 10th year anniversary of his death and it made logical sense to remember him with this type of event,” Lt. Lovewell said. “His wife Dana will be there, and it’s a good way for those at Peterson who knew him to remember him. I’m going to be a logistics readiness officer, and it’s an honor to set up the run and continue the logistics legacy in Dave’s memory.” 

Lyon, a 2008 U.S. Air Force Academy graduate, was performing a combat advisory mission with Afghan National Army Commandos and working with the Combined Joint Special Operations Task Force-Afghanistan when he died. 

“It was the first time I experienced the loss of a someone from a wartime act. His loss was tough for everyone,” said Tim Klein, 21st LRS logistics manager who worked with Lyon more than a decade ago. “His loss and memories of him are still discussed among members that were here at the time.” 

One of the other ways the 21st LRS keeps his memory alive is through a display case in building 1229 which houses mementos, uniforms, battle gear and pictures of Lyon throughout his career. The Captain David Lyon Memorial Park near the aquatics center here was also named in his memory, and in 2015 the U.S. Navy named an Air Force prepositioning vessel in his honor – the Motor Vessel Capt. David I. Lyon – a fitting tribute to the logistics officer. 

The free memorial run begins at 9:30 a.m. Dec. 27 at the Captain David Lyon Memorial Park.