The Department of Defense announced today the death a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
“Staff Sgt. Richard L. Vazquez, 28, of Seguin, Texas, died Nov. 13, in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his unit was attacked with an improvised explosive device while on dismounted patrol in Panjwai, Afghanistan”, according to the Pentagon.
He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.
The 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne), an operational unit of the United States Army Special Forces. Its purpose is to conduct guerrilla operations and train friendly governments’ armed forces in the South, Central and North America as well as the Caribbean. 7th Special Forces Group participated in Operation Urgent Fury in Grenada in 1983, as well as in Operation Just Cause in Panama in 1989. The 7th SFG has, like all the SFGs, been heavily deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in the war on terrorism .
The unit is nicknamed the “Devil’s Brigade”. Motto: Lo Que Sea, Cuando Sea, Donde Sea – it’s Spanish and means “Whenever, when, Wherever.”
See video: 7th Special Forces http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8XPEywYyq4E
In Sept. 2009, Vazquez volunteered for the Special Forces Assessment and Selection. He graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course in December 2010, and was assigned to the 3rd Bn., 7th SFG (A) as a weapons sergeant.
His military record reveals that he attended the U.S. Army Basic Airborne Course, U.S. Army Air Assault, Combat Lifesaver Course, Warrior Leader Course, the Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape Course, the Special Forces Qualification Course, Senior Mountaineer Course, Master Mountaineer Course, and SOF Sensitive Site Exploitation – Operator Advanced Course.
Vazquez’ awards and decorations include the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal (3rd Award), the Army Achievement Medal (2nd Medal), the Meritorious Unit Citation, the Army Good Conduct Medal (2nd Award), the National Defense Service Medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal with 1 Campaign Star, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with Numeral 2, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon (2nd award), the NATO Medal, the Master Driver Badge, the Air Assault Badge, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Parachutist Badge, and the Special Forces Tab.
See Pentagon Press Release: http://www.defense.gov/releases/release.aspx?releaseid=163