Jesse G. Clowers left for Afghanistan in March of this year, just two months before his second child and first daughter, Danielle, was born to his wife of more than three years. Assigned to the Army’s 2nd Battalion, 7th Special Forces unit out of Fort Bragg, N.C., it was Jesse Clowers’ first deployment since enlisting in the Army in 2004.
A loving family man, former high school varsity football player and patriotic American with aspirations to one day work in federal law enforcement, Jesse Clowers was killed in action on Sunday while fighting alongside two fellow soldiers in Afghanistan. He was 27.
"His number one passion in life was his family," said his sister, Nikki Clowers, of Bowie, Md. "He really thrived being with his family, they were always his number one priority and the thing that made him most happy in life."
THE YOUNGEST of three children, Jesse Clowers grew up in Roanoke and attended Cave Spring High School, where he played on the varsity football team as part of its offensive line, according to Nikki Clowers, 32.
After graduating from Virginia Tech in 2003 as a business major, he moved in with his sister, then living in Herndon. It was while living in Herndon that he met his future wife, Kaytie, whom he married in the spring of 2004.
As a recent college graduate, Jesse Clowers looked at several options for his career.
"He was always interested in public service, and wanted to do something along those lines," Nikki Clowers said. "After he graduated, he really focused on what he wanted to do, and decided that in the future he would do something in federal law enforcement."
Deciding that a term of service in the U.S. Army would act as a "stepping stone" towards gaining the experience for a position in federal law enforcement, Jesse Clowers enlisted, and went about his training to join one of the military’s most elite combat units: the Green Berets.
WHILE SERVICE to his country was always important for Jesse Clowers, he showed the most passion for his role as a husband and father, according to Nikki Clowers. That love came through every time he spoke with his family while serving in Afghanistan, she added.
"He was a big guy … and he had a very intimidating look, but inside he was a big softy," she said. "You couldn’t get off the phone with him without having him say that he loved you at least three times."
"He had a smile that made you want to forgive him for anything that he ever did."
Not just his family but the local community will feel his loss, Nikki Clowers said.
"It’s unfortunate that there’s people out there who never met him, he was a great guy, he’s very warm, he had a great, outgoing personality," she said. "Jesse was just a person who loved life … and just wanted to take care of his family and take care of the people in the community."