HOWELL - Sergeant Rocky Dennis Payne, 26, was killed while serving his country in Iraq on March 16, 2005. He was born on May 19, 1978 in Brigham City, Utah to Dennis William and Percilla Marie Abbott Payne.
    Rocky was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Howell Ward. He served a stake mission, was a seminary graduate, an Eagle Scout and received his GED. He excelled in playing the piano and played by ear. He was mechanical, especially in auto mechanics and electronics.
    Rocky loved animals and was drawn to children of all ages. He is known for being a practical joker. Rocky served in the Marine Corps for four and a half years. While in the Marines he served humanitarian missions in Africa, Yemen, Australia, Philippines and was involved in the initial assault on Baghdad. Rocky was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps and then he re-enlisted in the Army and was sent to Iraq in June of 2004.
    At the time of his death, he was serving with the 497th Transportation Company out of Ft. Lewis, WA supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom in Baghdad, Iraq. He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart and the Bronze Star Medal.
    Survivors are his parents; four brothers: Randall William (Cindy) of Tremonton, Utah; Rory D. (Lisa) of Sandy, Utah; Ricky Gene (Janalee) and Russell Warren (Marcy) both of Clinton, Utah; one grandmother, Percilla Abbott of Malad; and he was the favorite uncle of four nieces and seven nephews. He was preceded in death by his grandparents, John Lawrence and Verda Louise Whitaker Payne and Jacob Clifford Abbott.
    Funeral services will be held on Friday, March 25, 2005 at the Garland Tabernacle located at 140 West Factory Street, Garland, Utah at 11:00 a.m. Family and friends may call on Thursday evening, March 24, 2005 starting at 6:00 p.m. and also on Friday morning from 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the Garland Tabernacle. Interment will be held at the Howell Cemetery. While Rocky was eligible to be buried in the Arlington National Cemetery his family's wish was to bring him home to be buried in Howell with full military honors provided by the Utah Army National Guard. On-line condolences may be expressed at