DoD identifies casualty in combat related death in Iraq

Lieutenant Weston C. Lee preparing for a training combat jump (undated/courtesy FB)
Lieutenant Weston C. Lee preparing for a training combat jump (undated/courtesy FB)

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Inherent Resolve.

Lieutenant Weston C. Lee, 25, of Bluffton,GA died Apr. 29th, outside Mosul, Iraq, when he stepped on an IED (improvised explosive device) while conducting security as part of advise and assist support to partnered forces NE of Mosul.

He was assigned to 1st Battalion, 325th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Lieutenant Weston Graduated from the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega ROTC and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the United States Army in December of 2014. He was Airborne and Ranger qualified.

Many on his friends took on social media early this morning sharing stories about him and celebrating his life:

Lieutenant Weston C. Lee posing during an excursion with friends (undated/FB)
Lieutenant Weston C. Lee posing during an excursion with friends (undated/FB)

“I am at a loss for words. This was so shocking and heartbreaking to see this morning. This world, our country, our military, most importantly his family, friends, girlfriend and all who knew and loved this INCREDIBLE young man and US ARMY Soldier have lost one of the absolute BEST!!! My heart is breaking into a million pieces.  FREEDOM ISN’T FREE!!! Rest In Peace, Weston.”

“Wow…I’m in disbelief of the news I’m hearing from friends. WC Lee you were one hell of a man. We weren’t the closest but when we hung out you were always a welcoming character. Amongst your friends and peers you were well respected and loved. In war, you’re a man I never thought would fall but I suppose God had bigger and better plans for you. War is never an easy thing to understand but there is no question that your Faith in God was resilient and inspirational. It’s true when they say “the good ones go too soon.” You may be gone from us but your legacy will live on. God bless you Weston and thank you for being a blessing to everyone around you. My prayers go out to your family. Rest well…fly high.”

Lieutenant Weston C. Lee posing during an exercise (undated/FB)
Lieutenant Weston C. Lee posing during an exercise (undated/FB)

“You will truly be missed sir! One of the greatest leaders I’ve ever had!! Prayers go out to your family and all of my brothers over there in Iraq! Y’all boys come home safe and give them hell. Until Valhalla!”

“The true duty and commitment that goes along with serving your country never really seems to hit home until someone you know loses their life while serving. WC Lee was an amazing spirit, I enjoyed watching him grow up and watching his heart and values change and mold him into the man capable of protecting his country. Gone to soon but NEVER forgotten, Rest In Peace my friend. I’m praying for your family and everyone who loves you! To all my friends and family currently serving, I love you all and I will pray for you daily.”

The 82nd Airborne Division issued the following:

FORT BRAGG, N.C. -An 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper was killed in Iraq when an improvised explosive device detonated during a patrol outside Mosul. 1st Lieutenant Weston C. Lee, 25, of Bluffton, Georgia, was an infantry officer assigned to 1st Battalion, 325th Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.

“1st Lieutenant Wes Lee was an extraordinary young man and officer. He was exactly the type of leader that our Paratroopers deserve,” said Col. Pat Work, commander of 2nd Brigade Combat Team. “Our sincere condolences and prayers are with his family and friends during this difficult time.”

1st. Lt. Lee joined the Army in March 2015 and, following the Infantry Basic Officer Leaders Course, was assigned to the 2nd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division as a platoon leader.

He deployed to Iraq in December 2016. This was his first deployment. 1st. Lt. Lee’s awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Ranger Tab, the Parachutist Badge, and the Army Service Ribbon. He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and the Meritorious Service Medal.

The incident is under investigation.