By SGT. Victor Quinonez
First off, I would like to thank everyone for attending the memorial of one of the greatest guys the United States Army has ever seen: SSG. Darrell Ray Griffin, Jr.
SSG. Griffin and I clicked immediately, not just because we both volunteered to leave First Brigade and join this fine unit, but because he made me feel equal and welcomed. I think we can all agree he was like that with everyone.
SSG. Griffin, or Griff, as some of us knew him, was a perfect example of what an NCO should be in the military. He always kept morale up, was a great leader as well as a follower, but most of all he put everyone around him before himself.
I never saw Griff without a smile.
Griff was a big guy,very athletic or pretty buff in simple terms, but not only did he have big muscles, he had a big heart. He was very humble and had simple goals: to go far in the military, love his wife and love his precious little girl.
Now those of you who knew him well would know that his little girl was his dog Luna. I remember the first time I saw pictures of her I said “Hey, nice dog” and he said “Don’t you dare call her a dog, that’s my little girl!” Then we just laughed it off. But I made sure never to say that again. (If you’d seen the knife he carried around then you would know why…)
I remember the last thing Griff said to me was “Hey, brotha, April 1st, I’ll be there for sure.” That’s the day I am getting promoted. I know, my dear friend, you will still be there. You will be with all of us, now and forever; everywhere we go.
I can honestly say Griff went doing what he loved most, being outside the wire with his crew. He wouldn’t have had it any other way.
So I will close out by saying “SSG. Griffin, you will be dearly missed and never forgotten. God speed my friend and may you rest in peace.”
» Related Information:
- Read “Troops Salute Fallen Leader” here.
- Read the News Tribune article on SSG Griffin here.
- Read this article from the North County News.
- For more about “The Q,” read Welcome Aboard.