Nation & World

Soldier dies in Afghan incident

A soldier with roots in North Carolina was killed while overseas supporting Operation Enduring Freedom, Department of Defense officials said Wednesday.

Spc. George V. Libby, 23, an automatic rifleman, was fatally wounded during a noncombat related incident in Khowst, Afghanistan. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment out of Fort Lewis, Wash. His death is under investigation.

After graduating from Pine Crest High School in Southern Pines, Libby attended community college for two years. But a tour in the Army called to him.

He enlisted in the Army in March 2005 in his hometown of Aberdeen. Libby completed One-Station Unit Training and the Basic Airborne Course at Fort Benning, Ga. He graduated from the Ranger Indoctrination Program there in August 2005, then joined his unit in Washington.

Libby had previously been deployed to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

His wife, Valorie Libby of Tacoma, Wash., said in a statement that his decision to join the Army was because of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

"He died for your freedom, for all of our freedom," she said. "Freedom is not free, and it comes at a high price. George paid that price with his life.

"He believed in the mission, and I believed in him."

Libby was posthumously honored with the Bronze Star medal and the Meritorious Service medal.

In additon to his wife, Libby is survived by his mother, Nell E. Allen; father, Thomas M. Libby Jr.; and a brother, Ira Allen Libby.

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