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Army Sgt. Nicholas M. Dickhut

Died April 30, 2012 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

23, of Rochester, Minn.; assigned to 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.;  died April 30 in Zharay, Afghanistan, from wounds caused by small-arms fire.

Stewartville soldier killed in Afghanistan

The Associated Press

STEWARTVILLE, Minn. — A 23-year-old Stewartville soldier was killed in a firefight in Afghanistan shortly after he called Minnesota to wish his little brother a happy birthday, his mother said Monday.

The Rochester Post-Bulletin reported that Sgt. Nicholas Dickhut died April 30 in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar province. Dickhut is the first Minnesotan to die in Afghanistan in 2012.

"I'm still processing this," his mother, Jacqueline Carson, of Rochester, told the newspaper.

Carson said her son graduated from Stewartville High School and studied at Rochester Community and Technical College. He also worked as a supervisor at Office Max before enlisting in the Army.

"He called to wish his brother a happy birthday," Carson said, describing her last conversation with her son. "He called right before the firefight, right before the mission."

Dickhut's brother, David, turned 9 and idolizes his older brother, she said.

"On Saturday, we were talking on Facebook, and he was asking what present to send," Carson said. "He was thinking about re-upping and re-enlisting and asking my opinion."

Full honors for Minn. soldier at burial

The Associated Press

ROCHESTER, Minn. — A soldier killed in Afghanistan was remembered at his funeral as an “amazing” soldier and a great brother.

Mourners gathered May 8 to say goodbye to Army Sgt. Nicholas Dickhut. The 23-year-old died April 30 after enemy forces attacked his unit.

Tyler Jenkins met Dickhut when they were stationed in Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. Jenkins says Dickhut “cared about his job and his brothers.”

Dickhut was buried with full military honors, including a 21-gun salute and ringing of the Honor Bell, according to The (Rochester, Minn.) Post-Bulletin.

Dickhut was based at Lewis-McChord. He was a member of the 3rd Stryker Brigade that deployed in December and was attached to the 82nd Airborne Division as a forward observer.

Before his tour of duty in Afghanistan, Dickhut served in Iraq in 2009.

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