Two Germany-based soldiers killed in Iraq were identified by the Department of Defense late Thursday.

Staff Sgt. Garth D. Sizemore, 31, of Mount Sterling, Ky., died Tuesday in Baghdad from injuries suffered when his patrol came in contact with enemy forces using small-arms fire during combat operations. Sizemore was assigned to 1st Battalion, 26th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division, based in Schweinfurt.

Spc. Jose R. Perez, 21, of Ontario, Calif., was killed by an enemy sniper Wednesday in Ramadi. Perez was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, based in Baumholder.

Sizemore enlisted in the Army seven years ago, his father, Glenn Sizemore, said. The outdoors-loving soldier arrived in Germany three years ago, and his father said the two hadn’t seen each other since.

Sizemore married less than a year ago, his father said.

More than anything else, Glenn Sizemore said he admired his son’s sense of independence.

“He made his own decisions and lived with his own decisions,” he said.

A memorial ceremony for Sizemore will be held at 10 a.m. Tuesday at Ledward Barracks’ chapel in Schweinfurt.

A memorial ceremony for Perez will be held at 12:30 p.m. Monday at Smith Barracks’ Good Samaritan Chapel in Baumholder.

At least 41 1st Armored Division soldiers have died in Iraq since January. More than half died in Ramadi.

Sizemore was the fifth soldier from his brigade to die in Iraq since arriving there in August.

According to the AP, at least 70 U.S. troops have died in Iraq since the beginning of October. The Defense Department has identified 67 so far.

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