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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 754-03
October 15, 2003

DoD Identifies Army Casualties

            The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.

            Pvt. Benjamin L. Freeman, 19, of Valdosta, Ga., drowned on Oct. 13 near Al Asad, Iraq. Soldiers from his unit had been searching for Freeman when they discovered him floating on the surface of the water near Haditha dam.  Attempts made to resuscitate him were unsuccessful.

            Freeman was assigned to K Troop, 3rd Squadron, 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment, based in Fort Carson, Colo.

            Pfc. Jose Casanova, 23, of El Monte, Calif., died on Oct. 13 in Baghdad, Iraq.  Casanova was in a high mobility multi-purpose wheeled vehicle (HMMWV) when an Iraqi dump truck swerved and rolled over on top of his vehicle.  Casanova was one of two soldiers who were killed in this incident.

            Casanova was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 1st Battalion, 325th Airborne Infantry Regiment, 82nd Airborne Division, based in Fort Bragg, N.C.

            These incidents are under investigation.