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Army Spc. Blair D. Thompson

Died June 25, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

19, of Rome, N.Y.; assigned to the 1st Battalion, 327th Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died June 25 at Asadabad, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using rocket-propelled grenades and small-arms fire. Also killed in the attack was Spc. Jared C. Plunk.

Upstate NY soldier killed in Afghanistan fighting

The Associated Press

ROME, N.Y. — The father of a soldier from central New York who was injured in an attack in Afghanistan last month says his son has been killed in another attack.

Vincent Thompson of Little Falls says his 19-year-old son, Army Spc. Blair Thompson of Vernon, was killed June 25 when his unit was ambushed by insurgents in Kunar Province.

Thompson deployed to Afghanistan in May. He was serving with the 101st Airborne Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team.

The elder Thompson says his son was hit by shrapnel during an earlier attack soon after arriving in Afghanistan. Vincent Thompson says his son was offered a chance to heal but insisted on returning to his unit.

Blair Thompson joined the Army after graduating from Rome Free Academy in 2008.

Funeral services are pending.

‘All he wanted to do was protect you and me’

The Associated Press

Blair Thompson enjoyed paintball and loved hockey. His favorite team was the New Jersey Devils. Friends also say he was somewhat mischievous.

“He would do anything and everything to cause some innocent ruckus,” said former classmate Eric Benfrey. “He was always trying to make people laugh because he cared about them.”

Thompson, of Rome, N.Y., had wanted an Army career since childhood. He joined the Air Force Junior ROTC as a high school sophomore. He joined the Army after graduating from Rome Free Academy in 2008.

Thompson, 19, deployed to Afghanistan in May. On his Facebook page last month, he posted a photo showing shrapnel injuries he suffered in an insurgent attack.

His father, Vincent Thompson, said the Army offered his son a chance to rest and heal, but he wanted to be back in the fight. On June 25, insurgents again attacked Thompson’s unit. He did not survive.

“He went over there with a very open mind, with a true patriot’s heart,” his father said. “All he wanted to do was protect you and me.”

Thompson was assigned to Fort Campbell, Ky.

He also is survived by his mother, Arena Young, and three brothers.

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