Starke County Soldier Killed in Afghanistan IED Attack

Robert “Bobby” Tauteris Jr.

A Starke County soldier is one of four from the Hoosier state who were killed in Afghanistan this week. Robert “Bobby” Tauteris Jr., whose home address was listed in a release as being from Hamlet, was apparently killed by an IED explosion while on patrol.

Tauteris was a 1986 graduate of North Judson-San Pierre High School and is survived by his children Robert and Matthew. He is the son of Robert Tauteris, Sr. His mother Marge preceded him in death.

His Facebook page is full of condolences from friends and family, from both far and near.

National Guard Adjutant General Major Robert Umbarger said today, “We honor the sacrifice and will always remember the four men killed.”

Governor Mitch Daniels extended his prayers, and those of the entire Hoosier state to the families of the fallen heroes.

Robert Tauteris, Jr’s father, Robert Tauteris, Sr., talks about his son.

“He was a really good kid,” he said. “He was a really good kid in school and he liked to fish and hunt too. He lived for his boys. He lived for his family, he honestly did. Anything that came up, Bobby was there for them. Those two boys were his whole life.”

Tauteris was part of a father-son enlistment program. His son, Bobby III, was not involved in the same mission.

“According to the gentlemen that we talked to from the service, they were. Bobby was asleep when they just…got caught. The bomb got him.”

Bobby III accompanied his father’s body home to Dover, Delaware. Robert Sr. said one of their jobs was to clear supply routes. According to a National Guard spokesperson, the explosion occurred while the vehicle was out looking for roadside bombs.

Robert, Jr. leaves behind two sons, Bobby III and Matthew. His body will be returned home in four or five days. Services, according to Mr. Tauteris, will be held locally in North Judson, and he will be buried next to his mother in LaCrosse.

His father was asked how he would like his son to be remembered.

“He was an upstanding kid and he cared for his country and he cared for his family. He had a lot of friends and he never hurt anybody and he was always there to help. Anybody needed something, he’d be right there. That’s the type of person he was.”