Engineman Second Class (SW/EOD) Edward Austin Koth was born on June 27th, 1976 in Baltimore, Maryland. He graduated from Calvert Hall College High School in June 1994 and continued advanced education attending Loyola College, Maryland earning a Bachelors of Business Administration in May 1999. Austin enlisted in the U.S. Navy and reported for Recruit Training in August 1999.
Graduating from Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Illinois, Petty Officer Koth reported to his first operational assignment at Naval Special Clearance Team ONE (NSCT 1), Naval Base Coronado, California where he was assigned as primary diver in support of the MK 8 Marine Mammal System (MMS) training. Austin accumulated 32 hours of bottom time, where he monitored the maintenance of MK-8 MMS behaviors required for safe and efficient operations in hazardous Mine Countermeasure environments.
While assigned to NSCT 1, Petty Officer Koth volunteered for and was selected to attend Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) training and reported to Naval Diving and Salvage Training Center (NDSTC) Panama City, Florida in November 2003 to begin his training as an EOD Diver. Following Dive School, Austin reported to Naval School Explosive Ordnance Disposal Eglin AFB, Florida for additional training. He graduated in December 2004 as an EOD Technician. After follow-on Basic Jump School training at the U.S. Army’s Airborne School, Fort Benning, GA and advanced training at EOD Training and Evaluation Unit ONE in San Diego, California he reported to EOD Mobile Unit EIGHT in Sigonella, Sicily for his first operational EOD assignment. While assigned to EODMU EIGHT, he forward deployed to Camp Liberty Iraq with Detachment Eight in support of Task Force Troy where he cleared 2300 kilometers of Main and Alternate Supply Routes providing safe passage for coalition forces. In addition, Austin was a vital team member in the discovery and rendering safe of the largest array of Explosive Formed Projectiles ever captured.
An avid outdoorsman, Austin spent a great deal of time working out, running, hiking and SCUBA diving. Most of all, he devoted most of his personal time to helping others in need.
Petty Officer Koth was killed in action on the 26th of July 2006 while supporting combat operations Iraqi Freedom near Camp Victory Iraq.
Petty Officer Koth is survived by his father and mother, Gerard and Kathleen Koth; his brother Theodor, and two sisters, Chrisy and Jennifer; and his fiancée Alison.