WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 2006 – Eight U.S. servicemembers have died in fighting in Iraq since Dec. 1, military officials reported.
Two soldiers assigned to the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) were killed yesterday by an improvised explosive device while conducting a security patrol in Anbar province. Another soldier, assigned to 1st Battalion, 1st Armored Division, died Dec. 1 from wounds suffered due to enemy action in the province. Two soldiers assigned to 1st Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group and a Marine assigned to Regimental Combat Team 5 died yesterday from wounds suffered due to enemy action while operating in Anbar province. A soldier died yesterday from injuries suffered when the convoy he was traveling in struck a roadside bomb near Taji, Iraq, and a soldier was killed today while conducting combat operations in Baghdad.
The servicemembers' are being withheld pending notification of next of kin. The Air Force today changed the status of Maj. Troy L. Gilbert, the pilot of a U.S. Air Force F-16C that crashed Nov. 27, from "duty status whereabouts unknown" to "killed in action." Officials made a positive DNA identification of remains found at the crash site. Gilbert was flying in direct support of coalition ground combat operations when his plane crashed. The cause of the crash is under investigation. Gilbert was assigned to 309th Fighter Squadron at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz. and was deployed to the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing at Balad Air Base, Iraq.
Meanwhile the Defense Department has identified two soldiers who were killed in Iraq in recent days:
Army Staff Sgt. Jeremy W. Mulhair, 35, of Omaha, Neb., died Nov. 30 in Taji of injuries suffered when a roadside bomb detonated near his vehicle during reconnaissance operations. Mulhair was assigned to the 1st Squadron, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.
Cpl. Jonerik Loney, 21, of Hartselle, Ala., died Nov. 28 in Hit, Iraq, of injuries suffered when a roadside bomb detonated near his vehicle during combat operations. Loney was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 6th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division, Baumholder, Germany.