Sgt. Nelson Rodríguez Ramírez, 22 years old, is the latest soldier of Puerto Rican heritage killed in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Some 70 Puerto Rican soldiers have died: 64 in Iraq and 6 in Afghanistan.
"He didn't like war, but it was in his heart to be there and protect those kids." Nelson's father
A specialist with the New York Army National Guard, Sgt. Rodriquez Ramirez and three other U.S. soldiers died on June 21st when their truck was hit by a roadside explosive and small arms fire in Afghanistan. The soldiers were on their way to a police-training assignment in Kandahar City.
Rodriquez Ramirez leaves behind a wife and two daughters.
Rodriquez Ramirez was posthumously promoted to the rank of Sergeant posthumously. All three men were also posthumously awarded the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Combat Action Badge for their service in Afghanistan.
U.S. military war fatalities now total 4,620: 4,104 in Iraq and 516 in Afghanistan. Latinos represent about 11% or some 500 of the dead.
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