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National Briefing / WISCONSIN

Obama comment left her 'ecstatic'

September 29, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

The mother of a Wisconsin soldier who died in Iraq said she was "ecstatic" when Barack Obama mentioned during Friday's presidential debate the bracelet she gave him in honor of her son.

Tracy Jopek of Merrill said Sunday she was honored that the Democratic nominee remembered Sgt. Ryan D. Jopek, 20, who was killed in 2006 by a roadside bomb.

Jopek acknowledged e-mailing the Obama campaign in February, asking that the candidate not mention her son in speeches or debates.

But she said Obama's mention on Friday was appropriate because he was responding after John McCain, the Republican nominee, said a soldier's mother gave him a bracelet.

Obama quoted Jopek as saying, 'Can you please make sure another mother is not going through what I'm going through?' "

Jopek said Obama's comment suggested there was more than one viewpoint on the war.

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