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I Got The News Today (IGTNT) , which is among the oldest continuous series on Daily Kos, provides members of this community a venue to pay their respects to those who have died as a result of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.   The IGTNT  title is a reminder that nearly every day the family of an active duty service member receives the terrible news that their beloved has died.
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Staff Sgt Michael H. Simpson
Spc Trinidad Santiago, Jr.
Pfc Charles P. McClure

Since 2001 we have lost 2214 American troops in Afghanistan and a total of 3299 American and coalition forces.

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

Staff Sgt. Michael H. Simpson, 30, of San Antonio, Texas, died May 1 in Landstuhl, Germany, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit on April 27, with an improvised explosive device in Arian, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.   ~ DoD News Release

The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

They died May 2, in Camp Buehring, Kuwait, of injuries sustained in a vehicle accident.  They were assigned to 4th Battalion, 42nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Fort Carson, Colo.

            Killed were:

            Spc. Trinidad Santiago Jr., 25, of San Diego, Calif., and

            Pfc. Charles P. McClure, 21, of Stratford, Okla.
~ DoD News Release

Taps as performed by the US Army Ceremonial Band
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Day is done...Gone the sun
From the lake...
From the hills...
From the sky.
All is well...Safely rest
God is nigh.

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Staff Sgt Michal H. Simpson, 30, of San Antonio, TX.  Died 5/1/2013 from wounds suffered on 4/27/2013 when insurgents attacked his unit in Afghanistan.
Staff Sgt. Michael H. Simpson, 30 of San Antonio, Texas
Green Beret Staff Sgt Michael H. Simpson understood better than most what service in the military in general and serving in the Special Forces in particular required.  His father, Michael W. Simpson, was a career U.S. Ranger and Special Operations officer for 24 years, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel and his two older brothers have service in the Army as well.  

In a 2011 interview in the North Central News, father Michael W. Simpson, who is currently Olmas Park, Oklahoma City Manager, commented on his and his sons' combat service in Iraq:

The elder Simpson was a career U.S. Ranger and Special Operations officer during his 24 years of active duty, with a “long tour in Iraq with conventional forces” in 2007, followed by “two short tours in Afghanistan with special operations forces.”

His oldest son also deployed to Iraq with Special Forces, and his youngest son, Michael H. Simpson, “deployed during the height of the 'surge' to Iraq for 15 months as an infantryman and is now Special Forces, like his dad and older brother,” the father wrote in the 2011 piece.

The “middle son” was on a second tour of Iraq as an infantryman, Simpson noted at the time.

Wife, Krista and other loved ones were bedside at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center before he died of the injuries he sustained on April 27th.
“I’m so proud of him through everything,” Krista Simpson said Friday. “The man that he was when I met him, the man he grew to be, the father he was, and the person he made me."
Staff Sgt Simpson's Awards and Decorations include: Army Commendation Medal with 2 oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, Good Conduct Medal, Global War on Terror Service Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon, Non-Commission Officers Professional Development Ribbon with numeral "2" device, Army Service Ribbon, Special Forces Tab, Combat Infantry Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge and the Parachutist Badge.  He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart.

Staff Sgt Michael H. Simpson leaves behind his wife, Krista, and sons Michael, 3, and Gabriel, 1.

~ Source   ~ Source  ~ Source

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Spc Trinidad Santiago, Jr, 25 from San Diego (City Heights), CA.  Died in Kuwait on 5/2/2013 in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
Spc Trinidad Santiago, Jr., 25 of San Diego, California
Spc Trinidad Santiago, Jr. grew up in San Diego and graduated from Hoover High School in 2005.  He earned an associate degree from Coleman University with aspirations to become a graphic designer.

Santiago's wife, Belgica, who is four months pregnant, said he was a sweet man, was never selfish and took care of his family.  She said he loved cars and playing golf.

“Nobody had anything bad to say about him,” Belgica said. “He was shy. He wouldn’t really join the crowd. He never complained and always did what he was told.”
Santiago enlisted in the Army on October 13, 2009.  He served in Afghanistan from December 2010 until November 2011.  Spc Santiago arrived at Fort Carson, Colorado in July of 2012 and deployed for Kuwait in February 2013.

Pfc Trinidad Santiago, Jr.'s military decorations include the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the Army Achievement Medal, the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Ribbon, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon and the NATO Medal.

~Source  ~ Source

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Patch for 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.
Pfc Charles P. McClure, 21, Stratford, Oklahoma
Pfc Charles P. McClure enlisted in the Army on November 1, 2011.  He deployed to Kuwait in February 2013 and this was his first overseas deployment.  He served as a Cannoneer.

Pfc McClure's awards were: National Defense Service Ribbon, Global War on Terror Service Medal and Army Service Ribbon.

Pfc Charles P. McClure, a grateful nation salutes you.
               

An Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Pfc. Charles P. McClure Saturday, May 4, 2013 at Dover Air Force Base, Del. According to the Department of Defense, McClure, 21, of Stratford, Okla., died May 2, 2013 in Camp Buehring, Kuwait of injuries sustained in a vehicle accident. (AP Photo/Steve Ruark)
An Army carry team moves a transfer case containing the remains of Pfc. Charles P. McClure Saturday, May 4, 2013 at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware.
~ Source  ~ Source

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About the IGTNT series:

"I Got the News Today" is a diary series intended to honor, respect, and remind us of the sacrifice of our US troops. Click here to see the series, which was begun by i dunno, and which is maintained by Sandy on Signal, noweasels, blue jersey mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, SisTwo, SpamNunn, TrueBlueMajority, CalNM, Wide Awake in Kentucky, maggiejean, Ekaterin and me, JaxDem.

These diaries are heartbreaking to write, but are an important service to those who have died, and show our community’s respect for them. 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.

POW/MIA Banner
POW Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Sgt Bowe R. Bergdahl
The only known current Prisoner of War is Sgt. Bowe R. Bergdahl, 26 who was captured by the Taliban in June of 2009.  Five propaganda videos featuring Bergdahl have been released by the Taliban. A website has been established with the most up-to-date information on Sgt. Bergdahl.
 
Please keep good thoughts and prayers for Sgt. Bowe R. Bergdahl.

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