Army Spc. Jerod Osborne, 20, and Spc. Keenan Cooper, 19, died in Yakuta, Afghanistan, after their unit was attacked with an improvised bomb, according to Fort Bragg officials.
They were assigned to the 4th Squadron, 73rd Armor Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.
Osborne, a Royse City, Texas native, joined the Army July 1, 2008 and attended basic combat training at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. After completing basic training, he attended Advanced Individual Training at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, where he was trained to be a combat medic.
In March 2009, Osborne was assigned to his unit at Fort Bragg and later attended Airborne School at Fort Benning, Ga. Osborne deployed to Afghanistan with his unit in August 2009.
"Spc. Jerod Osborne proved himself as an outstanding medic while attached to Alpha Troop, 4th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment," said 1st Sgt. Edmund Scarborough, Osborne's first sergeant.
"His dedication to his fellow Paratroopers and to the people of Afghanistan was proven time and time again. Spc. Osborne is solely attributed to the saving of several Afghan civilians after their vehicle struck an improvised explosive device. Spc. Osborne's dedication to duty and the compassion that he showed to others will be missed greatly by his fellow Paratroopers, family and friends."
Osborne's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Combat Medic Badge and the Basic Parachutist Badge.
He is survived by his father, Allen Osborne, and his mother, Sharon Grillett.
Cooper, a mortarman from Wahpeton, N.D., joined the Army Aug. 12, 2008 and attended One Station Unit Training and Airborne School at Fort Benning, Ga.
After completing training, he was stationed at Fort Bragg on Feb. 25, 2009, where he was assigned to 4-73 Cav. Regt. Cooper deployed to Afghanistan in August 2009.
"He lived his life as a shining example of what it means to be a true man of honor and integrity," Scarborough said. "His commitment to excellence and love for his friends, family and fiancé was paramount in his life."
Cooper's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the Combat Infantryman Badge and the Basic Parachutist Badge.
He is survived by his parents, David and Heather Cooper.
A memorial in honor of the fallen Paratroopers will be held in Afghanistan.
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