Redlands, CA

Date of Birth: 1978-10-27
Date of Passing: 2016-02-08

SSG Joel Rodriguez did 3 tours and Earned the Purple Heart. SSG Rod survived and IED blast and was medically discharged. He was diagnosed with ptsd, TBI, depression and anxiety among several physical injuries and health problems. In high school he joined the ROTC, upon graduation signed up for the National Guard and within a year joined the ARMY full time. He became one of the greatest tankers of all time and he was extremely proud of being in 1-34 Armor. He excelled at everything he put his mind to. He loved his family and friends and enjoyed hunting and fishing. He was very proud of his military and always said that if was given the chance, he’d do it all over again. He never coward against anything, he was beyond brave but had the kindest heart. He was an honorable man and hurt everyday for the loss of his brothers in arms. He suffered from terrible nightmares and night terrors. He liked randomly calling his mom and siblings just to say I love you. Our heart aches everyday for Joel. We miss his voice, we miss his smile, we miss his wisdom, his big brown eyes and his big bear hugs.