Published: 03:39 PM, Thu Feb 04, 2010
2 Fort Bragg
paratroopers killed Tuesday in Afghanistan
Two Fort Bragg paratroopers were
killed when their vehicle was hit by an explosive device
in Afghanistan this week, the Department of Defense
Capt. Daniel Whitten, 28, and Pfc.
Zachary G. Lovejoy, 20, were assigned to Company C, 1st
Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th
Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.
The soldiers were on a mounted patrol
when an improvised explosive device hit their vehicle
Tuesday in the Zabul province of Afghanistan, the
Whitten was from Grimes, Iowa.
Lovejoy was from Albuquerque, N.M.
"Capt. Whitten and Pfc. Lovejoy were
beloved members of the task force," said Lt. Col. David
I. Oclander, commander of the 1-508th PIR "They lived
their lives to the fullest extent possible in everything
they did. Their lives inspired us and their memories
will drive us to honor them."
Whitten was commissioned as a second
lieutenant in the Infantry in May 2004 and subsequently
attended Infantry Officers Basic Course, Basic Airborne
School and Ranger School at Fort Benning, Ga. Whitten
reported to Fort Bragg in March 2005 and was assigned to
3rd Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment. He
served four months in Iraq.
In January 2007, Whitten deployed for
15 months in Afghanistan. Last August, Whitten became
the commander of Company C, 1-508th PIR, and deployed
for his third time.
Lovejoy enlisted in the Army as an
infantryman in August 2008, attending One Station Unit
Training and Basic Airborne School at Fort Benning, Ga.
He reported to Fort Bragg and was
assigned to 1-508th PIR where he served as an assistant
machine gunner. He deployed in August 2009 with the unit
for a year-long deployment in Afghanistan.
"Dan and Zachary will be missed by all
of C Company," said 1st Lt. Scott Haran, a platoon
leader in Company C. "We will all dedicate ourselves
fully to their memory and to their legacy. To Starr and
Mr. and Mrs. Lovejoy, you are in our thoughts and
Whitten's awards and decorations
include the Bronze Star Medal with one Bronze Oak Leaf
Cluster, the Army Commendation Medal with two Bronze Oak
Leaf Clusters, the National Defense Service Medal, the
Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the Iraqi Campaign Medal,
the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army
Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the NATO
Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Air Assault
Badge, the Senior Parachutist's Badge, and the Ranger
Lovejoy's awards and decorations
include the Army Good Conduct Medal, the National
Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal,
the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon,
the NATO Medal, the Combat Infantryman Badge, and the
Basic Parachutist's Badge.
Whitten is survived by his wife, Starr
Whitten, and his parents, Dan and Jill Whitten.
Lovejoy is survived by his parents,
Mike and Terry Lovejoy, and his sister, Ashley Lovejoy.
A memorial in their honor will be held