LOCKPORT, N.Y. (WIVB) - A western New York native has made the ultimate sacrifice inIraq. Private First Class Albert Jex of Lockport was killed in thedeadliest attack on Americans in nearly a year.
Bill and Cathy MacFarlane remember their son Albert Jex as ayoung man who loved fast cars, loved his country, and was a rolemodel to their son James.
Cathy MacFarlane said, "...loved his country, and did his job tothe best of his ability."
That determination took Private First Class Albert Jex to Iraq,where he served as a bodyguard for Army brass, handling a50-caliber machine gun mounted on a Humvee.
But a suicide bomber cut Jex's life short at a police checkpointin Mosul, also killing three other GIs and an Iraqiinterpreter.
Cathy talked to Albert just hours before that fatefulmoment.
Cathy MacFarlane said, "And it was one of those things, 'youlook skinny, you need to eat more.'"
Bill MacFarlane was Jex's stepfather, but they are stillfamily.
Bill MacFarlane said, "And I yelled to Cathy to tell him 'I lovehim.' He heard me, and Cathy said he said, 'I love you, too, Bill.'That made me feel real good."
While Al's loss is immeasurable, the MacFarlane's take somecomfort in President Barack Obama's recognition of their son as ahero.
When questioned about media policy surrounding the return ofAmerica's war casualties, it was a reality check for a newcommander-in-chief.
President Obama said, "The most sobering moment is signingletters to the families of our fallen heroes."
Al Jex's last visit with his family was back in December, justbefore he shipped out.
Police say they had the wrong man, and that Jerome Thagard, who spent four years in prison, didn't murder Steven Northrup in 2009. But the victim's family says otherwise.
A Good Samaritan died Wednesday while trying to assist the driver of a tractor trailer who got stuck in the snow.
A 26-year-old male employee of Ying's Wings and Things told police that Haibo Jiang, also known as Jimmy Ying, choked him until he passed out.
A one-car crash backed up Route 33 inbound Thursday, around 6:30 a.m. The accident happened on Route 33 West before the Route 198 split.
It was so treacherous in North Collins, the mayor had to issue a travel ban, and village snow plows were pulled off the roadways to keep drivers from trying to plow in zero visibility.
The Buffalo School Board unanimously approved plans to transform Burgard High School into a Manufacturing Magnet School on Wednesday,