News and Tribune

Clark County

March 12, 2008

Mother confirms death of Marine son from Clark County

DEEP CREEK, Fla. — The parents of Clark County native Eric Hall — the 24-year-old Iraq war veteran who went missing in Florida last month — are ready to take their son home.

Based on his clothes and war-wounded leg, Becky Hall, Eric Hall’s mother, said she is certain the body found deep within a Charlotte County culvert Sunday at the end of Partin Drive and Highlands Road was her son’s.

The family is still waiting for confirmation from the county medical examiner, but plans a public memorial on Thursday at noon at Faith Lutheran Church in Punta Gorda.

“There’s a pain in our heart, a place in our heart that will never go away,” Becky Hall said. “But at least we know where he was. We know what happened.”

Hall, who was said to have suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, disappeared from his aunt’s Deep Creek home on Feb. 3. Family members said he experienced a severe war flashback that sent him fleeing on his motorcycle. His motorcycle was found on Sulstone Drive, close to where his body was discovered Sunday.

The Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office has not released the results of its investigation, including the cause of death.

But Vietnam veteran Charles Shaughnessy, the man who found the body, said he thinks Hall might have died after taking refuge in the culvert from a small brush fire.

Becky Hall said she considered it a likely scenario.

On Sunday, Shaughnessy crawled into the culvert while Becky Hall waited outside.

“When I looked in Charley’s face, when he came back out, I knew it was” my son, Becky Hall said during a brief interview Tuesday.

Hall, a Marine, battled post-traumatic stress disorder after his best friend was killed by a improvised explosive device in Fallujah, Iraq, almost three years ago. The explosion also tore apart Hall’s leg. After nearly a year in and out of surgery, Hall was able to walk with a limp.

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