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US names service members killed in Afghanistan chopper crash

The crash brought the number of U.S. deaths in Afghanistan this year to 19. There also have been three non-combat deaths this year
Credit: Department of Defense

KABUL, Afghanistan — Two U.S. service members who were killed when their helicopter crashed in Afghanistan have been identified.

The Defense Department said Thursday that Chief Warrant Officer 2s David C. Knadle and Kirk T. Fuchigami Jr. died when their helicopter crashed while providing security for troops on the ground in eastern Logar Province.

Knadle and Fuchigami were assigned to a unit from Fort Hood, Texas. Knadle was 33 years old and was from Tarrant, Texas. Fuchigami was 25 and was from Keaau, Hawaii.

The Wednesday helicopter crash is under investigation. The Taliban claimed to have shot down the helicopter, but the U.S military dismissed that claim as false.

According to the Department of Defense, Knadle was assigned to 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.  He entered active duty in April 2013 and following his initial training, he was assigned to 1-227th in April 2015 where he served as an Apache Helicopter pilot.

Credit: Department of Defense

Knadle’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Air Medal, Army Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Combat Action Badge and Army Aviator Badge.   Fuchigami, whose home of record is listed as Keaau, Hawaii, was assigned to 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas. He entered active duty in May 2017 and following his initial training, he was assigned to 1-227th in October 2018 where he served as an Apache Helicopter pilot.    

Credit: Department of Defense

The Department of Defense said that Fuchigami’s awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Air Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Combat Action Badge and Army Aviator Badge.   Both Soldiers deployed to Afghanistan in October 2019.   

The crash brought the number of U.S. deaths in Afghanistan this year to 19. There also have been three non-combat deaths this year. More than 2,400 Americans have died in the nearly 18-year war.

Information about the soldiers was provided by the Department of Defense

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