Sgt. Franz Ulrich Walkup was born in Reutlingen, Germany on September 12, 1988. He moved to the United States in May of 2001. Sgt. Walkup graduated from Cannon County High School in 2007. He then attended Motlow Community College for one fall semester.
After his older brother 1LT Frank Bland Walkup passed away in June of 2007, his brother’s death inspired Sgt. Walkup to join the military service. He currently has 2 younger brothers serving in the army as Officers. Sgt. Walkup would go on to attend Basic Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky and Advanced Individual Training for Fire Support at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Sgt. Walkup married his wife Shannon Dawn Walkup in June 2012.
Sgt. Walkup’s first duty station was Fort Riley, Kansas with the Headquarters Company, 2nd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. While there, he was assigned to a COLT as an RTO and Driver. He Deployed to Iraq for Operation New Dawn in 2010 with the Bravo Company 1 Battalion 7 Field Artillery Regiment, Where he performed the duties of an FO/RTO. Sgt. Walkup was assigned 3rd Platoon Destined Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, and 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team where he performed the duties of a Forward Observer when he was injured in combat.
On September 29th, 2012 in Wardak Province, Afghanistan, a few weeks after his 24th birthday Franz was shot 5 times by an Afghan Army soldier that turned on his platoon. Sgt Walkup was immediately flown to Bagram Air Field. He was then flown to Landshtul and finally on 12 October 2012, he arrived at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, then was assigned to A Co., Warrior Transition Brigade.
Sgt. Walkup’s short-term goals are to be promoted to heal and be able to walk, to lead and train soldiers. For long-term goals, he would like to be able walk without assistance or aide, continue his college education and start a family with his wife Shannon.
He is currently attending the Colorado School of Trades and is becoming a gunsmith. He will graduate this October and will be moving back to Tennessee.