Vermont soldier remembered

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(Host) Another Vermont family is grieving the loss of a loved one in the war in Iraq.

21 year old Adam Muller died Monday when the Humvee he was riding in struck a roadside bomb.

Muller served as a gunner in the U.S. Army.

VPR’s Steve Zind has this remembrance.

(Zind) From writing English papers to working on his car, singing in the high school chorus, or enlisting in the Army – it seems Adam Muller was enthusiastic about everything he did.

In fact words like happy, energetic and polite come up constantly when those who knew Muller talk about him.

Mount Mansfield Union High School choral director Caleb Pillsbury says Muller joined the chorus in his senior year there and quickly got everyone’s attention. Muller convinced Pillsbury to depart from the standard repertoire and have the chorus perform his favorite rock song: Bohemian Rhapsody by the band Queen.

(Pillsbury) "It was a song he was passionate about. It was this cool gift that he gave to everyone in the choir."

(Zind) Pillsbury says Muller’s enthusiasm for the music was infectious. Even though he’d never sung in a chorus before, Muller pushed the group to perfect its performance.

(Pillsbury) "He wanted to do his best always."

(Zind) After high school, Muller attended Vermont Technical College, majoring in automotive technology. Steve Belitsos was his professor and advisor.

Belitsos says Muller was outgoing and gregarious, but always polite.

(Belitsos) "Just a real great guy, he really was."

(Zind) Belitosis says the two of them spent a lot of time under the hood of Muller’s car, trying to get it to go just a little bit faster.

(Belitsos) "I had owned a Dodge Spirit and he owned a Dodge Spirit and we were always trying to get that thing going just a little better than it did."

(Zind) Belitsos says he was surprised when Muller announced in his senior year at VTC that he was going into the service.

Belitsos says one of Muller’s reasons for joining the service may have been to help pay off his school loans, but there were other motivations as well.

Dana Storer’s dorm room was right across the hall from Muller’s their senior year. At one point, Muller asked Storer to correct an English paper he’d written. The paper explained Muller’s reasons for joining the service and going to Iraq.

(Storer) "He thought he could make a difference and I think he thought what was going on in Iraq at the time was needed."

(Zind) Storer says the same spirit of generosity and kindness that Muller showed his friends played a part in his decision to join the service.

Muller is survived by his parents, his sister and his wife, Michelle. The two were married last year.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

For VPR news, I’m Steve Zind.



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