10/28/2004 — Mushada, Iraq
For a proud soldier like Segun Frederick Akintade, there was only one way to say goodbye to his neighbors. He walked door-to-door in full dress uniform to let them know he was shipping out. "He was scared but he wouldn't show it," said Jose Reyes, 25, a friend. "He said he'd be back." Akintade, 34, of New York, died Oct. 28 in a roadside bomb attack near Abd Allah. Akintade earned a computer science degree from New York Technical College before joining the National Guard. He emigrated from Nigeria seven years ago after his father died. His mission was to send money back home for his mother, two brothers and two sisters, said Lawrence Koleosko, a relative. Neighbors remembered him as a quiet man who gave young people advice. Andrew Smith, 30, remembered Akintade chatting with neighbors in front of their building late into the night during the 2003 blackout. "He said America was good to him," said Smith. "He said he loved America and would love to be a citizen one day."