SFC KEITH A. CALLAHAN, US ARMY – Age 31, killed in action in Iraq, January 24th, of Fayetteville, NC, formerly of Woburn. Beloved husband of Dody (Baker) Callahan. Devoted father of Tyler, Devin, Brady & Brooke. Loving son of Joan (Haverty) Callahan of Woburn and the late Russell Callahan. Dear brother of Russell of NH, David, Stephen, Mark, and Barbara, all of Woburn, Jerry of Wilmington, Joan O’Brien of NH. Grandson of the late William and Cecilia Haverty and Bernard and Barbara Callahan. Also survived by many loving aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins. A funeral mass will be celebrated in St. Charles Church, 280 Main Street, Woburn, on Wednesday, January 31st, at 11 a.m. The family will be receiving relatives and friends at St. Charles Church on Tuesday from 3 to 8 p.m. Burial will be in Pennsylvania later this week. Donations may be made in Sgt. Callahan’s memory to the Children of Keith Callahan Educational Fund, c/o Sovereign Bank, 19 Pleasant Street, Woburn, MA 01801. Arrangements are by the Lynch-Cantillon Funeral Home, 263 Main Street, Woburn.
Sgt. First Class Keith A. Callahan, 31, a long time Woburn resident, died on Wednesday, January 24th, of wounds suffered when an explosive device detonated while he was conducting combat patrol south of Baghdad, Iraq. He was the beloved husband of Dody (Baker) Callahan.
Born in Winchester, Keith was the loving son of Joan (Haverty) Callahan and the late Russell Callahan. He grew up in Woburn, attending the Clapp Elementary School, Daniel L. Joyce Middle School, and Woburn High School, Class of 1993. While in high school he was very active in sports, participating in baseball, wrestling and football.
Following high school Keith enlisted in the United States Army, and first arrived in Georgia for his bootcamp training. Following bootcamp he then went to Ft. Bennington, Georgia, where he was involved in the Basic Airborne Course. Following this training he then reported to the 82nd Airborne Division and was assigned as a fire team leader in 2nd Bn., 325th AIR. Sgt. Callahan had three previous deployments with the Second Brigade in support of “Operation Iraqi Freedom.”
He had been described as “much more than a paratrooper; he was a warrior that embodied the spirit of freedom.” Over the last seven years he had been the recipient of the following medals, awards and decorations: the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Army Commendation, the Army Achievement Medal with one oak leaf cluster, the Army Good Conduct Medal with one oak leaf cluster, the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and Service Medal, the Humanitarian Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, the Combat Infantry Badge, the Expert Infantry Badge and the Ranger Tab and Senior Parachutists Badge.
At the time of his death his sole concern was for the welfare of his men, as he had deliberately posted himself at a critical road crossing to act as an additional security element to ensure the security of his platoon.
Sgt. Callahan had a great love of family. Growing up he was one of eight children, who were “all for one and one for all.” His best friends were his brothers and sisters, with whom he shared many happy times through out his life. Since he became a member of the United States Army, he was in constant contact with his mother, assuring her that he was taking good care of all of us. While in Iraq his mother would send “care” packages over to him there, which he shared with his fellow troops, and then he began to receive packages from the Goodyear and Clapp School students as well as “residents of Hiawatha Road” He was absolutely thrilled and proud that members of his community would take the time to remember him over there in such a loving, kind and generous way.
His wife and children were his heart and soul. When he was not serving on tour, he spent every waking hour with his wife and children. His children Tyler, age twelve, Devin, age seven, and twins Brady and Brooke, age four, were the loves of his life, and he will will be sadly missed by all.
Keith was the grandson of the late William and Cecilia Haverty and Bernard and Barbara Callahan.
Along with his wife, mother, and children, he leaves five brothers: Russell of New Hampshire, David, Stephen, and Mark, all of Woburn, and Jerry of Wilmington, and two sisters: Barbara of Woburn and Joan O’Brien of New Hampshire. Also surviving are many loving aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins.
A funeral mass will be celebrated in St. Charles Church, 280 Main Street, Woburn, on Wednesday, January 31st, at 11 a.m. The family will be receiving relatives and friends at St. Charles Church on Tuesday from 3 to 8 p.m. Burial will be in Pennsylvania later this week.
Donations may be made in Sgt. Callahan’s memory to the Children of Keith Callahan Educational Fund, c/o Sovereign Bank, 19 Pleasant Street, Woburn, MA 01801. Arrangements by the Lynch-Cantillon Funeral Home, 263 Main Street, Woburn.