2nd Brigade Combat Team suffers its first combat death in Iraq
The 2nd Infantry Division’s 2nd Brigade Combat Team suffered its first combat death in Iraq earlier this week, the Department of Defense confirmed Thursday.
According to a Pentagon news release, Staff Sgt. Gary A. Vaillant, of the 2nd Battalion, 72nd Armor Regiment, was killed Sunday when his tank ran over an anti-tank mine. The incident occurred near Khaldiya, the release said.
Vaillant, 41, was a native of Trujillo, Puerto Rico. A family memorial is planned in his hometown, officials said; there was no word Thursday on whether a memorial service would be held by the 2nd Infantry Division in South Korea.
Some 3,600 members of the South Korea-based 2nd Brigade are on a one-year deployment to Iraq.