Master Sgt. George A. Bannar Jr., of Fort Bragg, NC, formerly of Orange, VA, died Tuesday, Aug. 20 after being wounded from small-arms fire when enemy forces attacked his unit in Wardak province, Afghanistan. It was Master Sgt. Bannar's fifth deployment to Afghanistan.
Bannar graduated from Orange County High School, Orange, Virginia in 1993 and enlisted as a medical specialist in Oct. 1996. He completed his medical training at Fort Sam Houston, TX, and then attended the Army Airborne School at Fort Benning, GA.
Upon completion of his initial training, he was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division. While serving in the 82nd, he volunteered for the Special Forces Assessment and Selection and began his Special Forces training in 2001.
He graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course in July 2003 as a Special Forces medical sergeant and was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group. Master Sgt. Bannar served in the 1st Battalion for five years, deploying with the unit to Afghanistan four times.
In Aug. 2008, he was assigned to the 1st Special Warfare Training Group (Airborne) and stationed in Yuma, AZ, where he worked at the Military Free Fall School as an instructor. In Oct. 2012, Master Sgt. Bannar returned to the 3rd Special Forces Group and was assigned to the 3rd Battalion.
Friends and family remember Bannar as big-hearted, family-oriented and rarely without his signature wide smile.
Master Sgt. Bannar is survived by his wife, Michelle Bannar of Ft. Bragg, North Carolina; his father, George Bannar, Sr. of Orange, Virginia; his mother, Sheila Y. Long of Spotsylvania, Virgina; his grandfather, Marion W. Myers, Jr,. of Spotsylvania, Virginia; his grandmother, Deloris Meadows Sparks of Stuart, Florida; and step-sister, Carolyn Wyld Titus of Waynesburg, Pennsylvania; He was preceded in death by his step-mother, Barbara Bannar of Orange, Va.
A visitation will be held from 5 to 9 p.m., Monday, September 2, 2013, at Johnson Funeral Home, Locust Grove. A funeral will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, September 3, at the "old" Locust Grove Middle School Gymnasium, at 31208 Constitution Highway, Locust Grove, Va..
Interment to follow at Culpeper National Cemetery, Culpeper, Virginia.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the wounded warrior project at www.woundedwarriorsproject.org or the fisher foundation at www.fisherhouse.org..
An online guest book is available at johnsoncares.com.