Pentagon identifies soldier killed in non-combat incident in Iraq

"Our hearts go out to his family as together we mourn the loss of our brother-in-arms. As we grieve this tragic loss, we will also draw strength from his memory as his mates continue to build the capacity of the Iraqi army and enable the defeat of ISIS."

The Army's legendary 101st Airborne Division is mourning the loss of a young soldier killed in a non-combat related incident in Iraq.

Spc. Ryan Dennis Orin Riley, 22, died on April 20 in Ninawa province while supporting the U.S.-led mission against ISIS, the Defense Department announced. The incident is under investigation.

From Richmond, Kentucky, Riley joined the Army in October 2016 and became a specialist two years later, said Lt. Col. Martin O'Donnell, a spokesman for that 101st Airborne Division.Riley arrived in Iraq in December on his first deployment, O'Donnell said.

At the time of his death, he was a fire control specialist assigned to 2nd Battalion, 32nd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team.His awards include the Combat Action Badge, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Korea Defense Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, and the Overseas Service Ribbon.

“We are deeply saddened by Ryan's passing,” Col. Derek Thomson, commander of the 1st Brigade Combat Team, said in a statement. “Our hearts go out to his family as together we mourn the loss of our brother-in-arms. As we grieve this tragic loss, we will also draw strength from his memory as his mates continue to build the capacity of the Iraqi army and enable the defeat of ISIS.”

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Jeff Schogol
Jeff Schogol

is the senior Pentagon reporter for Task & Purpose. He has covered the military for 15 years. You can email him at schogol@taskandpurpose.com, direct message @JeffSchogol on Twitter, or reach him on WhatsApp and Signal at 703-909-6488. Contact the author here.

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