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Army Spc. James L. Miller

Died March 29, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom

21, of Yakima, Wash.; 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.; died March 29 in Dashat, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when insurgents attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device.

Soldier survived by wife, young daughter

The Associated Press

James Miller’s mother expected him back from Afghanistan by the Fourth of July as the 21-year-old soldier neared his return home to Yakima, Wash.

“He was excited. He was down to three months, almost time to come home,” his mother said. “He had just Skyped his wife and saw his little girl and was talking about her talking to him, saying, ‘Daddy! Daddy!’”

Kim Miller said she last spoke to her son four days before he died.

The soldier was killed March 29 in Dashat by a roadside bomb. He had been assigned to Joint Base Lewis-McChord.

“We’re doing the best we can,” Kim Miller said.

Miller graduated from Chugiak High School in Anchorage, Alaska, in 2007, according to his father, Nick Miller.

After moving with friends to Washington state, James Miller met his wife, Katie, while studying mechanics at Yakima Valley Community College.

In 2009, Miller joined the Army because he wanted to provide for his family, his mother said. His daughter, Peyton, was born while he was in boot camp, and he was deployed to Afghanistan about six months after enlisting.

“He was serving his country. He had three more months, and he would’ve been home. But that didn’t happen,” Kim Miller said. “They told him he would be back by the Fourth of July.”

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