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Honoring those who fought and died in Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation New Dawn
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Army Cpl. Tomas Sotelo Jr.

Died June 27, 2003 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom


20, of Houston, Texas; assigned to Headquarters Troop, 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Polk, La.; killed by enemy fire June 27 in Baghdad, Iraq. Sotelo was traveling in a convoy when a rocket-propelled grenade struck his vehicle.

In the eyes of his superiors, Cpl. Tomas Sotelo Jr. was a guiding light for his unit.

“In those moments of stress, he would always have something to say that would lighten their hearts,” said Brig. Gen. Jason Kamiya, commander of Sotelo’s training unit at Fort Polk.

Sotelo’s platoon sergeant, Sgt. 1st Class Douglas Zollman, said Sotelo “was like a big brother to the other soldiers.”

“He was the guy who, when other soldiers would come to the unit, would help teach them what they should do and what they shouldn’t do to stay out of trouble,” Zollman said.

Sotelo was the son of Tomas and Benancia Sotelo.

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2002   2001