Decorated 101st Airborne Soldier Dies on Eastern Europe Deployment

Lt. Col. Nicholas D. Goshen, 101st Airborne

Lt. Col. Nicholas D. Goshen, an intelligence officer in the 101st Airborne, died Sept. 6, 2022, while deployed to Eastern Europe. The Ohio native was one of nearly 4,000 soldiers deployed to the region in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. US Army photo. Composite by Coffee or Die Magazine.

US Army photo. Composite by Coffee or Die Magazine.

“It was during an ambush that we clicked,” remembers Maxwell Ramsey.

The retired Army NCO said he wasn’t sure what to make of Nicholas D. Goshen when the junior officer was installed as Ramsey’s platoon leader before a 2006 deployment with the 101st Airborne Division. The junior lieutenant was a Ranger School graduate, but he was still just months out of college at The Citadel in South Carolina. Taking over Ramsey’s platoon at the 101st was Goshen’s first chance at command.

But on a 2006 patrol in Iraq, Ramsey says, when their platoon was ambushed, he learned what Goshen was made of.

Nick Goshen Iraq

Lt. Col. Nicholas D. Goshen, front, while deployed to Iraq in 2006. Photo courtesy of Max Ramsey.

Photo courtesy of Max Ramsey.

The Army said in a press release this week that Goshen, a lieutenant colonel in the 101st’s intelligence directorate, died Sept. 6, while deployed to Eastern Europe. The Ohio native was one of nearly 4,000 soldiers deployed to the region in response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Goshen’s unit was at Mihail Kogălniceanu Air Base in Romania, east of Bucharest.

The Army has not released details on Goshen’s cause of death, but several who knew him told Coffee or Die Magazine that Goshen was an inspiration to his troops and a brave leader in combat, including Ramsey, who quickly learned that his new lieutenant was a man he could trust.

“He was your typical young new lieutenant,” Ramsey said. “But he wasn’t afraid to get down and dirty.”

The two were in a vehicle on March 1, 2006, when it was hit by an improvised explosive device. Ramsey was thrown from the vehicle, sustaining an injury that would lead to the loss of his leg. Goshen, he said, never left his side.

“He stayed with me while we were towed back onto base and all the way until I was medevaced,” Ramsey said.

Joel Funk, a former pilot with the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment, remembered Goshen from The Citadel.

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“Nick was the type of leader and upperclassman a junior cadet looked up to and didn’t want to disappoint,” Funk, who was two years behind Goshen, told Coffee or Die. “Sophomores and seniors aren’t exactly friends at that school. There’s a very strict pecking order … I remember him to be tough as nails, no bullshit, but always willing to help and develop those he was in charge of.”

Between his first assignment to the 101st with Ramsey and his last in Romania, Goshen served in the 10th Mountain Division, the 173rd Airborne Brigade, and the 75th Ranger Regiment. He also taught as an associate professor of military science at the University of Southern California.

“Nick was a valued member of the team whose passion and commitment to the division and our Soldiers was extraordinary,” said Maj. Gen. JP McGee, commanding general of the 101st Airborne Division.

Over seven deployments, Goshen was awarded the Bronze Star with Valor and the Purple Heart.

Ramsey said the two had lost touch over time, with nearly 15 years passing since they had spoken; however, the lost time didn’t make the news of Goshen’s death any easier. “It really hit me hard. The Army lost a good man.”

The Army said Goshen is survived by his wife of 14 years, Megan Epner.

Read Next: Army Rangers Remember Man Who Launched Modern Ranger Training, Lt. Gen. David E. Grange Jr.

Tom Wyatt is an intern at Coffee or Die Magazine. He is an active duty Naval Special Warfare Boat Operator and a proud father living in San Diego, California. Tom is a budding reporter, looking to pursue journalism and fiction writing upon exiting the Navy.
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