Fort Bragg, N.C. — A Fort Bragg soldier was killed Sunday in Afghanistan, the Department of Defense said Monday.
Spc. Jonathan Batista, 22, of Kinnelon, N.J., died in the Kandahar province when enemy forces attacked his unit with small-arms fire.
Batista was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 321st Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division. He was on his first deployment to Afghanistan.
"Jon served his platoon as a mine detector operator and cleared their path as they patrolled throughout the farmland of Zharay," battalion commander Lt. Col. Philip Raymond said in a statement. "Their safety was his priority. His courage bolstered theirs and endeared him to his platoon."