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Contractor From Georgia Killed in Iraq

October 30, 2004

COLUMBUS, Ga. (AP) _ A former sheriff’s deputy who friends said quit his job to join a security consulting firm so he could help out in Iraq was killed in a car bomb attack, reports said.

Travis Schnoor, 39, a former Army Ranger at Fort Benning, died Wednesday after the vehicle in which he was riding flipped over after hitting an improvised explosive device near Abu Ghraib, about 20 miles west of Baghdad, the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer reported.

Schnoor’s wife, Alyce, and 9-year-old son, Tristan, were notified by Muscogee County sheriff’s deputies, the newspaper said. Schnoor was a former bomb technician with the department.

In a telephone interview with The Monroe (Wis.) Times, Schnoor’s friend John Clements said he had wanted to help out in Iraq, but was too old to go back into the Army. So Schnoor resigned from the sheriff’s department and joined Custer Battle of Rhode Island, a security consulting firm, Clements said.

``It’s a major loss,″ said Capt. Rick Kelly. ``He felt there was a need to make a difference for the people in Iraq.″

Schnoor played football at Marshall High School in Marshall, Wis.; his mother Shirley Ethridge-Cook lives in Monroe, Wis.

Ethridge-Cook said her son tried to comfort her this summer when he called to tell her he was going to Iraq.

``He said, ’I’ll be fine. Don’t worry about me,‴ Ethridge-Cook said.

Schnoor was sent to Iraq in August and was due back for a two-week leave. Friends say Schnoor was planning to return to Columbus in two weeks to congratulate his son, a third-grader who recently earned a spot on his school’s student council.

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