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Tonight we remember a highly decorated and respected Special Forces Communications Sergeant from York, PA.  

 Since 2001, there have been 2057 American troops killed in Afghanistan. Since January 1, 2012 there have been 193 U.S. troops killed in Afghanistan.  Please take a moment to honor their sacrifice.

Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service members chronicled here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.

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DoD Announces Army Casualty

Staff Sgt. Brandon R. Pepper, 31, of York, Pa., died July 21, in Ghazni province, Afghanistan.

Pepper was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group, Fort Bragg, N.C.

Staff Sgt. Brandon Pepper
Staff Sgt. Brandon Pepper graduated from Kenwood High School in Maryland in 1999.  He enlisted with the Army in 2000 and served in Military Intelligence at Fort Meade.  In 2003, he deployed to Iraq with the reserves.  2008, Pepper graduated from Fort Benning's Infantry Advanced Individual Training.  Afterwards, he served as squad leader with the 101st Airborne.  In October 2009, Pepper graduated from Special Forces Assessment Course at Fort Bragg.  In 2011, he completed Special Forces Qualification Course and deployed for his first tour in Afghanistan.

Pepper's brother, Staff Sgt. Drake Pepper described him to the YDR.com:

"He wanted to do something for a better cause," Derek Pepper, 25, said in a phone interview Monday evening.
In an email Monday evening, John Robert Pepper said his brother made friends easily and was simply known as "Pepper" to many people he knew. He said his brother never had a problem sharing his views and was a very outgoing person.
"He always tried to have a good time and him not having a smile on his face was a rare occasion," John Robert Pepper said in an email. "...My brother was a unique individual and will be missed greatly by his family and friends."
Staff Sgt. Pepper's awards and decorations include Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Joint Service Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal with one oak-leaf cluster, Army Good Conduct Medal, Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal with “M” device, Non-commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with numeral 2 device, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon with numeral 2 device, and Special Forces Tab Expert.

Staff Sgt. Pepper will be posthumously awarded the Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Meritorious Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with campaign star, NATO medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge,

Rest in Peace, Staff Sgt. Brandon Pepper.
Sources: Dundalk.patch.com, York Daily Record, York Daily Record - Sunday edition

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I Got the News Today is a diary series intended to honor, respect and remind.  Its title is a reminder that almost every day a military family gets the terrible news about a loved one. Diaries about the fallen usually appear two days after their names are officially released, which allows time for the IGTNT team to find and tell their stories.

All of the U.S. fatalities can be seen here and here.  They all had loved ones, families and friends.  The DoD news releases are here.  I Got the News Today is intended to honor, respect and remind.  Click the IGTNT tags below for previous diaries.

Click the IGTNT tags  to see the series, which was begun by i dunno, and which is maintained by  Monkeybiz, Noweasels, Blue Jersey Mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, SisTwo, Spam Nunn,  True Blue Majority, CalNM, Wide Awake in Kentucky, Maggie Jean, Jax Dem, TheFatLadySings, Ekaterina, and me, Sandy on Signal.

Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service members chronicled here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.

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