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US Army soldier dies in non-combat incident in Iraq

Sgt. Christopher Wesley Curry, who died in a non-combat incident in Erbil, Iraq in May 4. (U.S. Army/Released)
May 05, 2020

A U.S. Army soldier with the U.S.-led international coalition against ISIS died in a non-combat incident on Monday.

The U.S. Army identified the soldier as Sgt. Christopher Wesley Curry, who “died in a non-combat related incident May 4 in Erbil, Iraq.” Curry was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division.

“Sgt. Curry joined Charlie Company in April 2019 and immediately became a part of our Army family. His technical expertise enabled the unit to deploy from Alaska in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, and his continued effort eased the Company’s transition while in theater,” said Lt. Col. Jimmy Howell, 3-21 Infantry commander, in a statement to American Military News. “Sgt. Curry’s incessant optimism was the hallmark of his personality, and often provided respite for others during times of stress.”

“His honesty, light heartedness, and wit will always be remembered by his brothers in arms. His loss is being felt immensely by Charlie Company, 3-21 Infantry, and the 1/25th SBCT. It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to one of our own.”

An earlier statement from Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve noted that COVID-19 was not suspected to be a factor, and the incident is currently under investigation.

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Curry’s death comes just more than a month after Sgt. 1st Class John David Randolph Hilty was confirmed dead also in a non-combat related incident in Erbil, Iraq, on March 30.

Hilty, 44, was a Maryland native assigned to the 1st Battalion, 227th Aviation Regiment, 1st Air Cavalry Brigade, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas.

Tuesday’s death marks the seventh service member to die this year with Operation Inherent Resolve.

On March 13, two service members were killed in a rocket attack on Camp Taji, Iraq. Those service members were identified as Army Spc. Juan Miguel Mendez Covarrubias, assigned to Fort Hood, Texas, and Air Force Staff Sgt. Marshal D. Roberts, of the Oklahoma Air National Guard.

U.S. and coalition forces have been conducting numerous operations alongside Iraqi forces against ISIS, including in recent weeks.