Dunedin family remembers their fallen hero - WFLA News Channel 8

Dunedin family remembers their fallen hero

Posted: Updated:
Zack Shannon's brother, Robert Mirrione Zack Shannon's brother, Robert Mirrione
Zack Shannon's parents, Kimberly and Chip Allison Zack Shannon's parents, Kimberly and Chip Allison
Zack Shannon's family Zack Shannon's family
Family military memory wall Family military memory wall
Zack Shannon's brothers:  Joe Mirrione, Steven Shannon, Robert Mirrione Zack Shannon's brothers: Joe Mirrione, Steven Shannon, Robert Mirrione
DUNEDIN, FL -

A Dunedin high school graduate is being remembered as a hero.  21-year-old Army Specialist Zack Shannon was killed in Afghanistan early this week in a helicopter crash.  Zack Shannon comes from a long line of military members.

His grandfather, father, and three brothers all served.  As they mourn they understand the sacrifice he gave, and they are immensely proud of him.  Step inside Zack Shannon's house and you can't help but notice a shrine to the family business.  Along a wall you'll find a number of photographs of men in uniform- representing three generations of service members.

Whenever these family members come home, they're reminded of their proud military legacy, but unfortunately one member of the bunch- Zack Shannon, won't be coming back.  His father Chip Allison said, "Zack was killed doing what he wanted to do and where he wanted to be."

Shannon was a Blackhawk helicopter mechanic, serving in Afghanistan.  His mother Kimberly Allison said, "His thing was 'I'm not afraid to go over, he never showed fear."  Earlier this week he and four others were killed when their helicopter crashed.

Military officials say the helicopter crashed in southern Afghanistan, and there was no enemy activity in the area at the time of the incident.  It's now under investigation.

Two military officers delivered the news on Tuesday.  "You walk in, you look at them, you just want to say, 'Go away' and maybe it would make it go away, but I knew," said Kimberly. "The image of those uniforms will be stuck in my mind forever 'cuz I knew what it was."

The family thought of the possibility of losing him, but never believed it would actually happen.  Zack's brother, Sgt. Steven Shannon said, "I always had the image in my mind, ‘What am I gonna do if one of my brothers goes?' And you can't really put much thought into it because you never think it's gonna happen….whatever you prepare for, nothing is ever gonna be good enough."

Their caring, fun-loving, Tampa Bay sports fanatic was gone.  Chip said, "Would I do anything to go back a week? Yeah, obviously yes. But on the same hand, Zack's the hero to his family, the community and everybody. He was where he wanted to be."

This family is now broken, but together they're staying strong -knowing their courageous son died serving his nation and doing what he loved.  The family will be holding a memorial service for Zack on March 24th at the VFW in Dunedin.

  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • Are background checks enough for Florida teachers?

    Are background checks enough for Florida teachers?

    Friday, April 18 2014 7:41 PM EDT2014-04-18 23:41:35 GMT

    In an effort to weed out potential perverts, Florida law requires fingerprinting and criminal background checks before school districts hire employees that will have any contact with children.

    In an effort to weed out potential perverts, Florida law requires fingerprinting and criminal background checks before school districts hire employees that will have any contact with children.


  • Pasco mix-up sends registration notices to wrong drivers

    Pasco mix-up sends registration notices to wrong drivers

    Friday, April 18 2014 6:02 PM EDT2014-04-18 22:02:51 GMT
    The vehicle registration information of hundreds of drivers in Pasco County were sent to the wrong person in a mix-up that led to the firing of a contractor.
    The vehicle registration information of hundreds of drivers in Pasco County were sent to the wrong person in a mix-up that led to the firing of a contractor.
  • Flushable wipes, not so flushable says Tampa's wastewater officials

    Flushable wipes, not so flushable says Tampa's wastewater officials

    Friday, April 18 2014 3:52 PM EDT2014-04-18 19:52:20 GMT
    Personal wipes, baby wipes, face wipes, flushable wipes. They are all designed to help us deal with delicate issues. But the wipes themselves are actually pretty sturdy and increasingly local water systems are finding they are creating costly problems.
    Personal wipes, baby wipes, face wipes, flushable wipes. They are all designed to help us deal with delicate issues. But the wipes themselves are actually pretty sturdy and increasingly local water systems are finding they are creating costly problems.
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Arcadia dog set on fire improving, could be released early

    Arcadia dog set on fire improving, could be released early

    Tuesday, April 1 2014 11:26 PM EDT2014-04-02 03:26:55 GMT
    "Hope" was doused with kerosene and set on fire. BluePearl Veterinary photo"Hope" was doused with kerosene and set on fire. BluePearl Veterinary photo
    A 1-year-old DeSoto County dog that was set on fire is improving and could be released from 24-hour care to a primary care veterinarian next week.
    A 1-year-old DeSoto County dog that was set on fire is improving and could be released from 24-hour care to a primary care veterinarian next week.
  • Restaurant Ratings: Most Violations April 7-13

    Restaurant Ratings: Most Violations April 7-13

    Saturday, April 19 2014 6:47 AM EDT2014-04-19 10:47:28 GMT
    We’ve gathered details about the Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from April 7 to 13, 2014.
    We’ve gathered details about the Tampa Bay restaurants that received the most violations during inspections conducted from April 7 to 13, 2014.
  • Knoxville woman finds body under deck during Easter egg hunt

    Knoxville woman finds body under deck during Easter egg hunt

    April 18, 2014 07:19 AM 2014-04-20 00:38:25 GMT
    A mother was shocked to discover the odor she'd smelled was a dead body underneath the deck of her Knoxville home.
    A mother was shocked to discover the odor she'd smelled was a dead body underneath the deck of her Knoxville home.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.