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Attack Kills Soldier in Afghanistan
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) -- A U.S. Army soldier from Tucson has died from wounds suffered during an attack in Afghanistan, the Department of Defense announced Thursday.
Command Sgt. Maj. Martin R. Barreras died Tuesday in San Antonio Military Medical Center, officials said. He had suffered wounds earlier this month when his unit was attacked in Herat Province, Afghanistan, the Department of Defense said.
A friend and fellow Ranger said in an email to Fox News that Barreras was the leader of the Army battalion that conducted the successful rescue of Lynch from an Iraqi hospital. The friend said Barreras personally handed Lynch to another soldier to transfer her to the helicopter that evacuated her from the area.
Barreras, according to the friend, then fended off multiple attacks in order to retrieve all 9 of the bodies of the other U.S. soldiers missing in action to bring them home.
The 49-year-old was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 5th Infantry, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division in Fort Bliss, Texas. The 1st Armored Division, also known as "Old Ironsides," dates back to before World War II.
In a statement, Rep. Ron Barber, D-Tucson, called Barreras a brave member of the United States Army.
"Command Sgt. Maj. Barreras's death is a reminder that although the United States is winding down our combat role in Afghanistan, we still have men and women who are placing themselves in harm's way every day," Barber said. "I thank each one of them, as well as their families, for their service and for their sacrifice."