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Hawley '02 grad killed in Baghdad

The Hawley, Minn., community has received word that a 2002 graduate of their high school was killed Saturday in Iraq. Jason Schumann, a member of the Army, was killed in Baghdad while escorting a convoy to the airport, said the Rev. Tom Olson of ...

Jason Schumann

The Hawley, Minn., community has received word that a 2002 graduate of their high school was killed Saturday in Iraq.

Jason Schumann, a member of the Army, was killed in Baghdad while escorting a convoy to the airport, said the Rev. Tom Olson of Solem Lutheran Church.

Olson, who is the Schumann family's pastor, said he didn't have other details. Family members requested that members of the media not contact them, Olson said.

Hawley High School Principal Mike Martin called his former student a "delightful young man in every regard."

Schumann, a member of the high school band, was known affectionately as "Tuba," Martin said. The principal wasn't sure when Schumann joined the military.

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"He was an extremely happy student, kind of a free spirit of sorts, but in a very good sort of way," Martin said. "We just thoroughly enjoyed him as a student."

Students were talking Monday about Schumann, and Martin informed the teachers.

"When I met with the faculty this morning, it was a blow, an absolute blow," said Martin, who heard of the death through "unofficial channels."

Natalie Thompson, who graduated with Schumann and now lives in Fargo, set up a group on Facebook, the social networking Web site, to remember her classmate.

Thompson hadn't talked to him since high school. She said she learned of Schumann's death when she was online at the same time as his wife, Laura Schumann, who lives in England.

According to Thompson's Facebook group, Schumann was one of six soldiers killed Saturday in a bombing in western Baghdad.

By 10:30 p.m. Monday, the group had nearly 70 members, including Alyssa Lien, now a sophomore at Minnesota State University Moorhead.

She remembers Schumann for his band participation and good nature.

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"He played the tuba and he was always happy," Lien said. "And always in the hall smiling, a very smiley guy."

Readers can reach Forum reporter Andrea Domaskin at (701) 241-5556

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