Soldier from Central Point dies in Afghanistan, defense officials confirm

A 21-year-old man from Central Point serving in Afghanistan died from a 'non-combat related incident,' the Department of Defense said.

Posted: Feb 13, 2020 9:42 AM
Updated: Feb 13, 2020 1:58 PM

CENTRAL POINT, Ore. — A soldier from Central Point who had been serving in Afghanistan died on Wednesday, according to the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). He was a part of the support team for Operation Freedom's Sentinel, the ongoing counterterrorism effort in Afghanistan that succeeded Operation Enduring Freedom.

21-year-old Specialist Branden Tyme Kimball died at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan in a "non-combat related incident," officials said. The incident surrounding his death is still under investigation, and the DoD did not provide any further details.

Spc. Kimball was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 10th Aviation Regiment, 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, Fort Drum, New York.

"As we mourn the loss of one of our own, our thoughts and prayers are with the people that knew SPC Branden Kimball best: his family, friends, and the Soldiers he worked with each and every day," Kimball's unit said in a post on Facebook. "SPC Kimball was a dedicated aircraft structural repairer and an important member of our brigade. Our hearts reach out to those that will grieve for him today, tomorrow, and long into the future."

Kimball joined the Army in August of 2016, and has been with the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade since going through basic combat and advanced individual training. Unit spokesman Lt. Col. Kamil Sztalkoper said that his death is the only one for the brigade so far this year.

During his career in the army, Kimball earned a number of awards and decorations including the National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Overseas Service Ribbon, and the Army Service Ribbon.

The Central Point man is survived by his mother, Sztalkoper said.

"The loss of any Mountain Soldier has a lasting impact on every member of the team. The 10th Mountain Division mourns the loss of SPC Kimball, he will be missed from our formations," said Sztalkoper.

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