Monday, October 15, 2012

R.I.P. - Sgt. Thomas R. Macpherson

DoD Identifies Army Casualty

             The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

             Sgt. Thomas R. Macpherson, 26, of Long Beach, Calif., died Oct. 12, in Andar District, Afghanistan, from small arms fire while on patrol during combat operations.  He was assigned to the 2d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.

             For more information related to this release, the media may contact the 75th Ranger Regiment public affairs office at 706-545-8407 or 706-570-5091.

By Nick Green, Staff Writer
Updated:   10/14/2012 12:30:16 PM PDT

A 26-year-old Long Beach native and married father of one was killed in a heavy firefight in Afghanistan as he led an assault against an enemy position, U.S. Army officials said Sunday.
Sgt. Thomas R. MacPherson, a graduate of Los Alamitos High School, was killed by small arms fire in Ghazni Province, Afghanistan.
MacPherson "selflessly lived his life for others and distinguished himself as a member of the Army's premier direct action raid force," Army officials said.
"Sgt. Tom MacPherson lost his life courageously leading his Rangers into a close quarters fight with the enemy," Lt. Col. Gregory Anderson, Commander of 2 nd Battalion, 75 th Ranger Regiment, said in a statement. "Tommy MacPherson never backed away from the dangers of combat, and his warrior spirit, personal example, and zeal for life continue to inspire all who knew him. "We will honor his service to our nation and the heroic example he set for all Rangers. Our thoughts and prayers are with the MacPherson family."
MacPherson is survived by his wife, Claudia MacPherson, and their son, Brayden, of Tacoma, Wash., and his parents, Troy and Diona MacPherson of Long Beach.
MacPherson was a team leader assigned to Company D, 2 nd Battalion, 75 th Ranger Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. This was his fourth deployment to Afghanistan and he had also previously served one deployment in Iraq.
"Sgt. Thomas MacPherson personified the traits of the consummate Ranger: commitment and courage," Col. Mark W. Odom, commander of the 75 th Ranger Regiment, said in a statement. "He deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq multiple times and always seemed to be at the critical points on the battlefield."
MacPherson was born July 20, 1986, in Long Beach.
He enlisted in the Army in May 2007 and completed basic training at Fort Benning, Ga.
After graduating from the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program he initially served as a mortarman with the 75 th Ranger Regiment. After three years, he was assigned to Company D where he served as a fire team leader.
His military education included the Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape Course and the Warrior Leader Course.
His awards and decorations included the Ranger Tab, the Combat Infantryman's Badge, the Expert Infantryman's Badge, the Parachutist Badge, and the U.S. Army Expert Rifle Marksmanship Qualification Badge.
MacPherson has also been awarded the Bronze Star Medal with Valor, Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with three Campaign Stars, Iraq Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and the NATO Medal.
He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service and Purple Heart.

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