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Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 1st Class Luis A. Souffront

Died February 7, 2008 Serving During Operation Iraqi Freedom

25, of Miami, Fla.; assigned to an East Coast based SEAL team; died Feb. 7, from wounds sustained from an improvised explosive device while serving in combat operations in Iraq.

EOD tech with SEAL team killed in Iraq

By Andrew Scutro

Staff writer

NORFOLK, Va. — An explosive ordnance disposal technician assigned to a Hampton Roads-based SEAL team was killed Thursday in Iraq.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician 1st Class Luis A. Souffront, 25, was killed by an improvised explosive device during combat operations, according to a Defense Department statement.

Small teams of EOD techs have been assigned to naval special warfare and other units in recent years due to the prevalence of improvised explosive devices such as roadside bombs and booby traps in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Lt. Dave Luckett, spokesman for Naval Special Warfare Group 2, said six other members of the team Souffront was operating with were wounded in the incident. Their wounds varied in severity but all were treated immediately, Luckett said.

Souffront joined the Navy in July 2000 and reported to EOD school at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida in March 2001. His home of record is Miami.

Joining the Navy was slain sailor’s passion

The Associated Press

Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Luis A. Souffront had traveled from Guam to Iraq, trained to be a salvage diver and to defuse and dispose of explosives for the Navy.

“The water was his life and joining the Navy was his passion,” said Rosanna Tejeda, one of his cousins. “We have lost a precious person.”

Souffront, 25, of Miami, died Feb. 7 in Iraq from wounds sustained from an explosive. He was assigned to a SEAL team in Virginia Beach, Va.

Though not a member of the SEALs, the Navy’s elite Special Forces unit, Souffront faced the same day-to-day dangers, said Lt. David Luckett, a Naval Special Warfare spokesman based in Virginia.

“They train side by side with their SEAL counterparts in preparation for deployments and are brothers-in-arms on the battlefield,” Luckett said.

“Respected for his skill and courage, he was valued as a teammate by the SEALs he fought beside,” said his commanding officer in a statement. “His service to our country represented the highest ideals of our community and his loss affects us all.”

Souffront is survived by his mother and father.

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