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Army Staff Sgt. Kristopher L. Shepherd

Died February 11, 2005 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

26, of Lynchburg, Va.; assigned to the 767th Ordnance Company, 63rd Ordnance Battalion, 52nd Ordnance Group, Fort McNair, Washington, D.C.; killed Feb. 11 when an improvised explosive device detonated during clearing operations in Baghdad.

Lynchburg native killed in Iraq

Associated Press

LYNCHBURG, Va. — A soldier from Lynchburg was killed in Iraq when an explosive device detonated during clearing operations in Baghdad, the Defense Department said.

Staff Sgt. Kristopher L. Shepherd, 26, died Friday, the department said Sunday.

Shepherd was assigned to the Army’s 767th Ordnance Company at Fort McNair in Washington, D.C. His unit had already been to Afghanistan, where his hands and face were burned in an explosion, before shipping out to Iraq in January, his family said.

Shepherd, a husband and father of two, married his high school sweetheart and decided to join the military when he was 17, his mother, Sheila Campbell, told the News & Advance of Lynchburg. The couple figured a military career would offer them a good future.

Shepherd started as a mechanic after joining the Army, then decided to work as an explosives ordnance disposal specialist, his mother told the newspaper. He also turned down other opportunities in the Army to stay with the tight-knit explosives unit.

“He was an exceptional soldier with a positives ‘can do’ attitude,” said Charles Barley, who supervised Shepherd before retiring from the Army explosives unit.

If Afghanistan, Shepherd’s unit defused several devices and unexploded military ordnance left over from the Russian invasion of Afghanistan, Barley said.

Shepherd also enjoyed a good laugh and was a prankster, his mother said.

“If he could pull a practical joke on you, he would,” she said.


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