United States Air Force Technical Sergeant
Line of Duty Death: March 22, 2008

On March 22nd, 2008 United States Air Force Technical Sergeant William Haywood Jefferson Jr. sustained fatal injuries from an explosion triggered when his vehicle drove over an Improvised Explosive Device.

Jefferson was born and raised in Norfolk, Virginia. He committed to the United States Marine Corps prior to his graduation from Lake Taylor High School in 1991. In the Marine Corps, Jefferson served as an infantryman in the 2nd Recon Battalion, stationed at Camp LeJeune, North Carolina from 1991 to 1995. In 1996 Jefferson decided to switch branches of the military and enlist in the United States Air Force. He then served as a combat controller from 1996 to 2008. During this twelve-year period, Jefferson was awarded Combat Controller of the Year in 1998. 

William earned his Bachelor of Science in Professional Aeronautics degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in 2004 and was awarded posthumously a Master of Business Administration degree from Webster University in 2008.  He was about 2 classes away from completing his Master’s studies at Webster University at the time of his death. Jefferson was also posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Air Force Combat Action Medal.

Jefferson enjoyed spending his time skydiving and playing Texas Hold’em. U.S. Air Force Technical Sergeant William Haywood Jefferson Jr. is survived by his wife, Kristy, and their two daughters, Tyler and Natalie.