"Mikey had a big heart and he wanted to help others," his wife said. "He wanted to contribute something big."
Pfc. Michael C. Olivieri, 26, and four others belonging to the 1st Infantry Division in Fort Riley, Kan., were killed in Baghdad when insurgents launched an attack on their base, division officials.
The attack on Monday was one of the deadliest days for soldiers assigned to Fort Riley since the war in Iraq began in 2003.
1st Infantry Division officials said the men were killed when insurgents attacked their base. The soldiers were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment.
Killed were Spc. Emilio Campo, 20, a combat medic from Madelia, Minn.; Pfc. Michael Cook, 27, a field artillery data systems operator from Middletown, Ohio; Pfc. Christopher Fishbeck, 24, a field artillery data systems operator from Victorville, Calif.; Spc. Robert Hartwick, 20, a combat medic from Rockbridge, Ohio; and Pfc. Michael C. Olivieri, field artillery data systems operator.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of these young heroes and our thoughts and prayers go out to their families,” said Lt. Col. Andrew Gainey, the soldiers’ battalion commander.
“They were all outstanding soldiers, outstanding people and most importantly, our good friends.”
The soldiers deployed to Iraq in November 2010. They were part of the 2nd Advise and Assist Brigade, supporting the development of Iraq forces and the improvement of civilian life in central Iraq.
“Mikey had a big heart and he wanted to help others,” his wife said. ”He wanted to contribute something big.”