A 28-year-old Army soldier from Irvine was killed in an explosion in Afghanistan on Tuesday, the Department of Defense said.
Staff Sgt. Matthew V. Thompson was patrolling the Helmand Province as part of Operation Freedom’s Sentinel when he was injured by an improvised explosive device, the DoD announced Thursday. Thompson died of his injuries.
The incident was under investigation, the DoD said.
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"He was an exceptional man, he was talented, and a great leader. He was a leader in all areas," said his mother-in-law, Karen L. Beyer.
Thompson was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.
Beyer said Thompson went to college in Irvine. He and his wife had no children together.