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A milblogger out of Oklahoma, and serving in Afghanistan, reports on the loss of Sergeant Buddy – "one of our own," as he calls him. That name, Buddy, calls up some fresh-faced Midwesterner, a good guy, a stand-up guy. There he is in pictures: uniformed in Afghanistan, and at home, cuddling his infant.

He was one of theirs – his unit’s, his family’s -- but his loss belongs to all of us. As does every service member’s death in Iraq and Afghanistan.

I Got the News Today (2/24/2007 Edition). Yesterday, the Department of Defense announced the name of three soldiers killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. According to the Iraq Coalition Casualty Count the number of names released by the DoD is now 3,151 and there are 3 more names of the deceased awaiting notification of the next of kin before being publicly released.

More after the flip.

DoD News Release

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Staff Sgt. David R. Berry, 37, of Wichita, Kan., died Feb. 22 in Qasim, Iraq, when the vehicle he was in struck an improvised explosive device. Berry was assigned to 1st Battalion, 161st Field Artillery, Kansas Army National Guard, Dodge City, Kansas.

From KAKE.com, a Kansas news station:

A Kansas National Guardsman was killed in Iraq this week. Sgt David Berry served with the 161 Field Artillery Unit out of Kingman and had been stationed in Iraq since March.

The 37-year-old Berry grew up in Anthony. KAKE News brought viewers his story in November, when he came home just before Thanksgiving for a surprise visit.
...
He had a total of more than 16 years of military service. In February 2005, Berry was awarded the Soldiers Medal, which is the highest peacetime honor that a soldier can receive. Berry was serving on active duty at Fort Leavenworth during Operation Enduring Freedom and while at home on leave came upon a single vehicle accident in Kingman County. The driver had lost control of the vehicle and crashed off the highway and the vehicle was on fire. Berry, at great personal risk, pulled the driver from the burning vehicle, saving his life. Maj. Gen. Bunting presented Berry with this medal while at his pre-mobilization station at Camp Shelby, Miss., prior to his deployment to Iraq.

His other awards include the Army Achievement Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Kansas National Guard Meritorious Service Ribbon, Kansas National Guard Commendation Ribbon, Kansas National Guard Emergency Duty Service Ribbon and the Kansas National Guard Service Medal.
Berry is survived by his wife, Kathleen, one stepdaughter, two stepgrandchildren, his mother, father, and sister.

DoD News Release

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Spc. Louis G. Kim, 19, of West Covina, Calif., died Feb. 20 in Ramadi, Iraq, of wounds suffered when his unit came in contact with enemy forces using small arms fire. Kim was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, Schweinfurt, Germany.

DoD News Release

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Sgt. Buddy J. Hughie, 25, of Poteau, Okla., died Feb. 19 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his unit came in contact with enemy forces using small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades. Hughie was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 180th Infantry, Oaklahoma Army National Guard, Ada, Okla.

From Task Force Pheonix 5, a milblog out of Afghanistan, which has also posted pictures of Buddy Hughie:

Well I’m sure most of you have heard or read about the 1-180th losing one of our own... Sergeant Buddy Hughie of Poteau was killed Monday when his squad was ambushed while patrolling here in Afghanistan. I knew Hughie just because both of us had been in the Battalion for so long and when you have been in the 1-180th for awhile you know everyone. Hughie was a great guy and always had a smile on his face or a kind word to say about anyone. I had the pleasure of riding out on a convoy a few months back with Hughie when we dropped him off out east in Nuristan. Hughie had lots of friends and the Battalion is taking it pretty hard. This was our first soldier lost in over 50 years I mean we haven’t lost a soldier in Combat since the Korean War.

All of the U.S. fatalities can be seen here.  They all had loved ones, families and friends. The DoD news releases are here.

I Got the News Today is a diary series intended to honor, respect and remind. Click here for the previous diary in this series, and here to see the series.

This series is maintained by i dunno; Sandy on Signal, silvercedes, and I are helping out for a while. Please leave a comment below to honor these men who are coming home in such a terrible manner.

Originally posted to monkeybiz on Sat Feb 24, 2007 at 09:10 AM PST.

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