[Congressional Record Volume 158, Number 47 (Wednesday, March 21, 2012)]
[Pages H1432-H1433]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]

                         CAPTAIN NICK WHITLOCK

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Chair recognizes the gentleman from 
Georgia (Mr. Westmoreland) for 5 minutes.
  Mr. WESTMORELAND. Madam Speaker, I come to the floor this morning 
with great sadness and also with great honor to honor the service of 
one of Georgia's own, Captain Nick Whitlock. On February 18, 2012, at 
Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti, Africa, he gave the ultimate sacrifice 
while returning from a mission in support of Operation Enduring 
  Captain Whitlock was born to the proud parents of Jimmy and Clare 
Whitlock on December 10, 1982. Even at a young age, Nick showed his 
maturity and that he was full of integrity. In one of his high school 
assignments, Nick was asked to define a leader. He wrote:

       A leader is a person that is in charge of a group, someone 
     that everyone looks up to and wants to be like. A leader is 
     also someone that is willing to complete their goals and give 
     100 percent no matter what. A leader is willing to stand up 
     for what he believes in even if he is alone. I want to be a 
     leader because I think that is what God has called me to be.

  For the young people that might be watching, we're always looking for 
a hero, and I think that Nick decided in his life that he would be a 
  Nick lived by his own words, and to say he was a leader was an 
understatement. He understood that success is achieved through hard 
work, faith, and dedication, and he lived every day as an opportunity 
to improve himself and the lives of others.

                              {time}  1030

  Nick graduated from Newnan High School in 2001 as an honor graduate 
and was recognized for his outstanding achievements in both football 
and baseball. Nick achieved his Eagle Scout rank and strove to use the 
skills he learned to influence every aspect of his life.
  He attended Mercer University, and he caught for the Mercer Bears 
baseball team. Most notable of Nick's many campus activities were his 
leadership roles as Mercer ambassador; president of his fraternity, 
Sigma Alpha Epsilon; and senator-at-large for the student government 
association. In 2005, Nick graduated with a bachelor of business 
administration degree; and in 2011, he went on to earn his master's 
degree in business administration from the University of Florida.
  While studying at Mercer, Nick earned his private pilot's license and 
was accepted into the United States Air Force in 2006. Nick trained 
with the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training program. In 2008, he 
received his wings and was assigned to the Air Force Special 
Operations. He became a member of the 34th Special Operations Squadron, 
which we have all heard about in the paper and on the news, and was 
promoted to captain in November of 2010, where he was assigned to the U 
28A aircraft.
  November proved to be one to celebrate, as Nick married the love of 
his life, Ashley, the same month as his promotion. Nick spread the 
happiness he found in both his marriage and life through his 
involvement with organizations such as Alaska's Healing Hearts, a 
nonprofit organization enabling disabled military veterans to 
participate in outdoor activities.
  Nick was serving on his fifth deployment in Djibouti, Africa, when an 
accident occurred while his aircraft was returning from a mission, 
taking not only his life but three of his fellow comrades. Nick was 
laid to rest at Forest Lawn Cemetery in his hometown of Newnan, 
Georgia, following a heartfelt ceremony at First Baptist Church.
  Friends of Nick's say he made them proud to be an American and to 
want to become a better man of God and a better father, better husband, 
a better son. His wife, Ashley, described Nick as loving, thoughtful, 
honest, considerate, and generous. He was a true gentleman and a 
steadfast man of God. They both prayed for God to shape their lives for 
His purpose so that their blessings would not stop with them but extend 
to everyone they met.
  His parents' love and pride for Nick's unwavering faith, integrity, 
and intelligence is never ending. They talk often of how, although he 
was never the smartest, biggest, or fastest, he used every ounce of 
what he was given to his highest potential. He was physically strong, 
mentally awake, and morally straight. In the eyes of his wife, family, 
and friends, there was no finer man or leader than Nick Whitlock.
  I am both honored and proud that a soldier from my district served 
with such courage and conviction. Nick embodied all the qualities of an 
ideal husband, son, brother, and friend. He was an extraordinary 
captain, and America has truly lost one of its finest. I am proud to 
stand here and thank him for sacrificing his life so that my family and 
I, and everyone else across this great Nation, can live free.
  Joan and I extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of 
Nick Whitlock's, and we will never forget the service and sacrifice 
that he made for our great country.

[[Page H1433]]

  Nick, we miss you. And until we meet again in the presence of our 
Lord, I want to use a nice Southern saying: Nick, you done good. Thank 
you, sir.