Captain Benjamin D. Keating was born in Sanford, Maine, on 31 May 1979. He attended Shapleigh schools and received his diploma from Massabesic High School in 1997. Ben pursued his college education just across the NH border and graduated from the University of New Hampshire in 2004. He earned a bachelor’s degree, graduating Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. While at the University of New Hampshire, he served as the chair of the Young Republicans. He participated in the Army ROTC program, was a distinguished military graduate, and recipient of the Marshall Award. Upon graduation, Ben Keating was commissioned a second lieutenant in the United States Army. The Army ROTC cadre at UNH called Ben “one the smartest and nicest young men to ever step through the doors of Zais Hall.”
Following his graduation from college, Ben Keating entered active duty and was trained in armor at Fort Knox, Kentucky. He was next assigned to Fort Drum, New York, where he served as platoon leader for the 3-71 Calvary, B Troop. Captain Keating became the executive officer of A Troop in November of 2005, and he was promoted to first lieutenant in January 2006. Shortly after in February, he was deployed to Afghanistan.
Benjamin Keating was killed in action while serving our country in the war against terror in Afghanistan. He died on 26 November 2006, at the young age of 27. Ben’s final rank was that of captain. He was a recipient of the Bronze Star, Combat Action Badge and the Army Commendation Medal with “V” Device.
Ben Keating was a member of the Springvale First Baptist Church, where he was a youth leader and taught Sunday School. He also served his local community as a member of the local planning board from 2000-2002.
Captain Keating was a special young man who symbolizes the bravery of those who enter an ROTC program knowing they will likely serve in harm’s way after graduation. He took the commissioning oath with the war on terrorism being fought on a daily basis.
The UNH ROTC Alumni Chapter will remember Captain Keating an outstanding Army officer who gave his life fighting terrorism. He will forever be a symbol of courage for those who choose to serve God and country. Captain Benjamin D. Keating is inducted posthumously into the ROTC Hall of Fame.