A combat medic stationed at Fort Bragg died earlier this month after a vehicle struck him while he was crossing a street.
Spc. John Michael De Leon, 31, was pronounced dead at the hospital after the incident on Friday, Dec. 9, Army Times reported. Army officials identified him Monday.
De Leon was trying to cross an intersection on Knox Street, on the military installation, but “failed to ensure all lanes were clear,” according to the preliminary loss report on his death. One driver saw him and stopped their vehicle, but another did not and struck De Leon when he entered their lane.
He had served two years as a combat medic in the 18th Field Artillery Brigade’s Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, officials stated. He hailed from San Antonio, Texas and joined the Army in 2019.
The incident is still under investigation. The preliminary loss report said about six soldiers have been lost per year in pedestrian mishaps since 2018, according to Army Times, and De Leon’s death was the Army’s first such mishap for the 2023 fiscal year, which began in October.
“We are deeply saddened by the loss of” De Leon, said brigade commander Col. Jon Harvey. “He was an instrumental part of our Steel Family, and his loss is felt by all of us. Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones during this tragedy, especially so close to the holiday season.”
HHB commander Capt. Thomas Sujack said De Leon was “selfless, enthusiastic, dedicated, and an outstanding teammate.”
“As we mourn the loss of our teammate, we remember and honor him as the exceptional father, husband, son, Soldier, and combat medic he was,” Sujack said. “We are forever fortunate to have had him on our team for the past 2 years. Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones.”
Fort Bragg is the largest U.S. Army base by population, according to the U.S. military, and borders the North Carolina cities of Fayetteville, Spring Lake and Southern Pines.