ForeverMissed
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, MSG Linda Ann Tarango-Griess 33 years old , born on April 14, 1971 and passed away on July 11, 2004. We will remember her forever.
Posted by Jim Meier on July 11, 2017
Dear Linda, Linda, I'm forever grateful for your service and sacrifice. You are honored and remembered in my heart and home.
Posted by Jim Meier on April 14, 2017
Dear Linda, You gave all serving our country including my family. I am sorry for your family. No doubt they miss you beyond words can say. I pledge to live productive days for the common; worthy of the sacrifice you and your family have made.
Posted by Jim Meier on July 11, 2016
Dear Linda, Someday I believe we will meet. When we do I'll be able to thank you for your service and the ultimate sacrifice you made for our country. As long as I live I'll honor and remember you.
Posted by Richard Budig on July 11, 2015
I painted this portrait of Linda for her parents. 
Posted by Richard Budig on July 11, 2015
I uploaded the painting I did of LInda for her parents. I hope you like it, and please tell other gold star families about my work. They can contact me through this site, I believe.
Posted by Carrie Hancock on May 24, 2015
I am eternally grateful to all of you for your sacrifice of Linda. She was a tremendous warrior. CW4 Carrie Hancock
Posted by Pat Mracek on July 11, 2014
forever missed, always our Hero
Posted by Pat Mracek on July 11, 2013
Always remembered.
Posted by Carlo Battistone on July 11, 2013
Always remembered . Carlo
Posted by Pat Mracek on July 11, 2012
Remembering Linda on her angelversary.  She is our hero and will never be forgotten.

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Recent Tributes
Posted by Jim Meier on July 11, 2017
Dear Linda, Linda, I'm forever grateful for your service and sacrifice. You are honored and remembered in my heart and home.
Posted by Jim Meier on April 14, 2017
Dear Linda, You gave all serving our country including my family. I am sorry for your family. No doubt they miss you beyond words can say. I pledge to live productive days for the common; worthy of the sacrifice you and your family have made.
Posted by Jim Meier on July 11, 2016
Dear Linda, Someday I believe we will meet. When we do I'll be able to thank you for your service and the ultimate sacrifice you made for our country. As long as I live I'll honor and remember you.
Recent stories

Painting of Fallen Given to Parents

Shared by Richard Budig on July 11, 2018

NORTH PLATTE - The oil painting of Linda Tarango-Griess sits in a place of honor, the first thing that Juanita and Augustine Tarango see when they step into their living room. The vigil candles that flank the painting flicker in their colored containers, creating a soft glow.



“It’s so beautiful. She was so beautiful,” says Juanita Tarango, speaking of both the painting and of her daughter.
Master Sgt. Linda Tarango-Griess, 33, was killed July 11, 2004, in Iraq. She was a member of the Nebraska Army National Guard’s 267th Ordinance Company, based in Lincoln with detachments in Gering and Hastings.




The painting that is the dominant feature on the shelf in the Tarango’s living room was created by artist Dick Budig of Skiatook, Okla., and formerly of McCook. Budig is attempting to paint portraits of each service man and woman from Nebraska who is killed in Afghanistan and Iraq. The paintings are done free of charge for the mothers of those Nebraska war casualties.



Although Budig has used the World Wide Web to find the names of Nebraskans who have died, along with their rank, where and how they were killed and their hometowns, he doesn’t contact the families directly.



“I’m reluctant to make contact with a family just out of the blue for fear of offending them or making them wary of my motives,” Budig says. He relies, instead, on families hearing about his project and contacting him.



Budig’s first painting in the project went to Josie Ford of Ogallala, mother of Capt. Travis Ford who was killed in Iraq. A Tarango family member in Lincoln remembered reading the story about Ford’s painting in the Telegraph and contacted Budig.



“They arranged for him to talk to my parents,” says Augie Tarango, Linda’s brother.



The family sent Budig pictures of Linda. And then they largely forgot about it.



Augie recalls the day, about a week ago, that UPS delivered a wooden box to the Tarango household.



“We still didn’t think about what it was,” says Augie, who carefully removed the screws from the wood box that made a secure shipping container for the stretched canvas of the 16-by-20-inch oil painting.



Once the box was open and Augustine and his son realized what it contained, they handed the painting to Juanita.



“She just clutched it close to her, rocking back and forth and crying,” Augie says.



Augie speculates that the arrival of the painting has been one of the better times in the last two-plus years since his parents received word of Linda’s death.



“We think sometimes that she just kind of gave up,” says Augie as he speaks of the two heart attacks and now the renal dialysis that have been part of his mother’s life since Linda died.



Sometimes Juanita Tarango has someone take the painting from its place of honor so she can hold it and admire it more closely.



“It is so great. It is so beautiful and looks so much like her,” says Augustine. His hand rests gently on Juanita’s shoulder as the two of them admire the likeness of their daughter.



“It’s like there is an angel out there and he’s one of them to do this kind of stuff for others,” says Augie of the special joy that Budig’s painting has brought his parents.



“She is always here,” says Augustine as her fingers move across the painting.
Her hand moves to her heart.



“And here,” she says, her voice a soft whisper.