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Army Staff Sgt. Joan J. Duran

Died August 10, 2007 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

24, of Roxbury, Mass.; assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died Aug. 10 in Iraq of injuries sustained in a non-combat-related incident.

Boston soldier killed in Iraq

The Associated Press

BOSTON — A Boston man is killed while on tour in Iraq.

The Department of Defense says 24-year-old Army Sgt. Joan Duran died Friday in a non-combat related incident.

Duran was assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division, based at Fort Bragg, N.C.

His friends told The Boston Globe he was in his second Iraq tour and planned to become a college math teacher.

Duran was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to the Boston area as a toddler. He was due to return to Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood in November after four years of service in the Army.

A 2003 graduate of Boston Latin Academy, Duran’s friends said he was a straight-A student who won honors for football and track.

“He was a hero. He always had passion for everything he did,” his childhood friend, 26-year-old Remy Pena, told the Globe. “Whether it was tennis, carpentry, or cooking, he was always the best.”

After his tour, Duran planned to buy a house and marry his fianc©e, Andrea Silva, 17, of Woburn, Pena said.

“He was very loving and we were perfect for each other,” Silva told the newspaper.

Friends said Duran discussed the possibility of his death, and asked that his casket be adorned with symbols of the Dominican Republic and the United States to match tattoos on his shoulders.

A memorial service is expected this week.

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