POSTED: 6:52 a.m. HST, Jul 21, 2011
LAST UPDATED: 10:11 a.m. HST, Jul 21, 2011
Two Schofield soldiers were killed in an attack in Afghanistan's Kunar province, the Department of Defense said today.
Staff Sgt. James M. Christen, 29, of Loomis, Calif., and Sgt. Jacob Molina, 27, of Houston, Texas, died Tuesday of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated, according to a news release.
They were assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.
Twelve Schofield soldiers with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team have been killed in mountainous and rebellious Kunar — the site of some of the greatest U.S. losses in the 10-year war — since the unit's 3,500 soldiers left in March.
Kunar province is a transit route for militants coming from Pakistan. The 3rd Brigade operates in Kunar and Nangarhar provinces from fewer than 10 forward operating bases and multiple combat outposts.
This was Christen's third overseas deployment.He previously served two tours in Iraq. Staff Sgt. Christen enlisted in the U.S. Army June 22, 2000 as an Infantryman.
Molina previously served one tour in Iraq. Sgt. Molina enlisted in the U.S. Army February 15, 2007 as an Infantryman.
Both soldiers were married.
Christen's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart (both posthumous), Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Star, Iraq Campaign with Star, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Army Service Medal, Noncommissioned Officer Profession Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge and the Parachutist Badge.
Molina's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal (posthumous), Purple Heart (posthumous), Combat Infantryman Badge (posthumous), Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Star, Iraq Campaign Medal with Star, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Army Service Ribbon.