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YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — Two more 2nd Brigade soldiers have been killed in Iraq, bringing the unit’s total to at least 19 deaths since its deployment began in late August.

Pfc. Dennis J. Miller, 21, was killed Wednesday in Ramadi when a rocket propelled grenade hit his M1A1 Abrams tank, the Pentagon said. Miller was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 72nd Armor Regiment, which deployed from Camp Casey, South Korea.

Staff Sgt. Sean P. Huey, 28, died Thursday in Habbaniyah when a car bomb detonated near his Humvee, officials said. Huey was assigned to 1st Battalion, 506th Infantry Regiment, formerly at Camp Greaves, South Korea.

The pair of deaths came as U.S. forces engage in fierce battles throughout what is known as the Sunni Triangle, an area containing cities such as Ramadi, Habbaniyah and Fallujah. In recent days, U.S. commanders have pressed an all-out assault on Fallujah, fighting street to street. Clashes also have picked up in Ramadi, which is often linked to Fallujah as centers of the months-long insurgency in central Iraq and is the focus of 2nd Brigade’s operations.

According to media reports from his hometown of La Salle, Mich., Miller’s death came as an unusually cruel blow. Army officials notified his parents of his death on Veterans Day, just days after Miller and his wife discussed by phone their plans for a 15-day leave Miller had been granted for December or January.

In Miller’s last call home, he talked about missing deer hunting season with his father, a Caribbean vacation with his wife of 14 months and seeing his nephew for the first time.

“He would always tell me, ‘Don’t worry, Mom, I’ll be all right,’” Kathy Miller, his mother, told the Toledo Blade.

Miller had been stationed at Camp Casey for eight months before his unit shipped out to Iraq with the rest of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team in August, his family said.

“I don’t think it’s sunk in. I don’t think it will for a while,” Kimberly Miller, Dennis Miller’s 19-year-old widow, told the Detroit Free Press.

Miller’s mother told the newspaper she initially opposed his enlisting in the Army.

“The day he told me he enlisted, my thoughts were that it was just the wrong time. It was wartime, it was all starting,” she told the Free Press. “If George Bush would’ve walked on my porch today, I would’ve strangled him.”

In an online profile Dennis Miller wrote for himself, he described his service as something important to him, and something he enjoyed.

“The camaraderie,” he said in describing his fellow soldiers. “I made friends I’ll remember forever.”

Huey, of Fredericktown, Pa., also leaves behind a family.

According to news reports, his wife and 11-month-old son moved to Hope Mills, N.C., to be near her family during his deployment to Iraq.

Huey’s parents, in Pennsylvania, and sister, serving in the Air Force in North Carolina, were crushed by the news of his death, family members said.

“They’re all devastated, like they’re walking in a cloud. They’re waiting for someone to call and say it was a mistake,” Jennifer Huey, his sister-in-law, told the Associated Press.

“He was a happy-go-lucky person, carefree, who enjoyed life and enjoyed people. He especially enjoyed his son.”

“He’s just a baby,” Jennifer Huey said of her brother-in-law, “with a baby of his own.”

2nd Infantry Division officials have said they will hold a memorial in South Korea later this month for all of the fallen 2nd Brigade soldiers.

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