- NATO Kosovo Force
- Operation Enduring Freedom
- Operation Freedom’s Sentinel
- Operation Inherent Resolve
- Operation Iraqi Freedom
- Operation New Dawn
- Operation Octave Shield
- Operation Odyssey Lightning
- Operation Spartan Shield
- Task Force Sinai
- U.S. Africa Command Operations
- U.S. Central Command operations
- The People Behind The Sacrifice
Army Staff Sgt. Edwin Rivera
Died May 25, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom
28, of Waterford, Conn.; assigned to 1st Battalion, 102nd Infantry Regiment, Connecticut National Guard, Norwalk, Conn.; died May 25 at National Naval Medical Center, Bethesda, Md., of wounds sustained May 20 when his unit was attacked by enemy forces using indirect fire at Contingency Outpost Xio Haq, Afghanistan.
Conn. guardsman dies after being shot in Afghanistan
The Associated Press
HARTFORD, Conn. — A member of the Connecticut National Guard has been killed in Afghanistan.
Gov. M. Jodi Rell’s office says 28-year old Staff Sgt. Edwin Rivera of Waterford died May 25 after being shot May 20 in Afghanistan’s Laghman province.
Rivera was a member of 1st Battalion, 102nd Infantry Regiment, one of two Connecticut National Guard units that were deployed in the region late last year.
Rell ordered all state flags be flown at half staff until sundown on the day of Rivera’s interment.
Believed in helping Afghan children
The Associated Press
When Edwin Rivera broke the news to his family that he was returning to Afghanistan for a second tour with the Connecticut National Guard, he had one reason: the Afghan children.
“When the U.S. soldiers drive by,” Rivera, 28, told his mother Gladys, “the children will scramble like mad in the dust just to get thrown a simple pencil from us. They don’t even have pencils.”
This time, Rivera didn’t make it home.
He died May 25 after being wounded during an attack five days earlier in Afghanistan’s Laghman province.
When home in Waterford, Conn., Rivera worked the evening shift as a security guard at a nuclear power plant. While his wife, Yesenia, worked days in a dental office, Rivera cared for their sons, Rolando and Lorenzo, making sure they ate and made it to and from school safely.
Rivera was a 2000 Waterford High School graduate. Friends remember him as a cheerful, giving person.
“He would go out of his way to greet you and ask how you were doing,” Ed Discola posted on an online memorial site. “It was impossible to have a conversation with him and not come out of it smiling.”