Friday, July 7, 2017

Afghanistan Casualty - RIP PFC Hansen Kirkpatrick

One young soldier from the Fort Bliss-El Paso Community, Army Private First Class Hansen B. Kirkpatrick, a mortarman with the 1st Armored Division’s 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team from Fort Bliss Texas, was killed by indirect fire while outside his base on a partnered operation with Afghan troops, said Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman. The attack, presumably by Taliban fighters, occurred in Helmand province’s Nawa district, and also caused injuries to two other U.S. soldiers who are expected to survive, Davis added.

Kirkpatrick, of Wasilla, Alaska, was described by his executive officer, Maj. James C. Bithorn, in a statement as a “caring, disciplined, and intelligent young soldier” who daily lived by his unit’s motto: “Deeds Not Words.” He had been in the unit about a year, Bithorn said.

“At a time when we remember the patriots who founded our nation in freedom, we are saddened by the loss of one of our comrades who was here protecting our freedom at home,” said Army Gen. John Nicholson, the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan. “We will keep his family in our thoughts and prayers as we reflect on the sacrifice he and others have made to secure our freedoms and help make Afghanistan a better place.”

SFA Chapter IX does not normally report on U.S. military wide casualties but this one hit close to home as PFC Kirkpatrick was from our community. God Speed PFC Kirkpatrick, and may the Good Lord grant your family a measure of peace knowing you did your duty.

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