TV5 has learned a Mid-Michigan soldier has died suddenly while serving at Fort Benning, GA.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Jake Schlereth, 31, a 1999 graduate of Vassar High School, was stationed at the fort as an instructor at the Army Reconnaisance Course. The Tuscola County Advertiser reports that Schlereth passed away Tuesday, Nov. 27, in a hallway at the base following a routine meeting.
Schlereth's wife, Margaret, also of Vassar, told the Advertiser that authorities investigating his death told her his heart stopped when he collapsed. Doctors have not yet determined a cause of death.
Schlereth had completed a third overseas deployment in 2011 and had been living in Opelika, AL, with his wife, Margaret, and their son Caleb for nearly a year.
Margaret Schlereth told the Tuscola County Advertiser that, "He was such a good daddy and husband, Caleb was his whole life. He thanked me all the time for giving him a baby."
Visitation for Schlereth is planed for Friday, Dec. 7 at Hanlin Funeral Home in Millington from 1 p.m. until 8 p.m. and his funeral is scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 8, at 1 p.m. at Vassar High School.
A portion of Schlereth's obituary, published at Hanlin Funeral Home's website, is listed below:
Jake was born Dec. 1, 1980 in Saginaw MI and was a 1999 graduate of Vassar High School. After high school, Jake joined the U.S. Army and was stationed at Fort Campbell, KY, for most of his career. He was more recently stationed at Fort Benning, GA, as an Army Reconnaissance Course Instructor. During Jakes Army Career he had been deployed three times, once to Iraq and twice to Afghanistan, with his most recent tour ending in 2011. Jake had received two bronze stars with valor, among many other awards and honors. On April 14, of 2007 Jake married Margaret Bentley.
Jake loved anything out doors; he loved hunting, fishing, and boating. He loved spending time with friends and family, his most favorite time was his time with Margaret and their son Caleb. "He was such a good daddy and husband."
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