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Five Servicemembers Killed in Iraq; Earlier Casualties Identified

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Feb. 15, 2007 – Five U.S. servicemembers were killed in action in Iraq yesterday, military officials reported, and the Defense Department has identified two servicemembers who died earlier while deployed in support of the war on terror.

Four Task Force Lightning soldiers were killed yesterday when enemy fighters attacked their unit in Iraq’s Diyala province Feb. 14. Three of them died of injuries suffered from explosions near their vehicles, and the fourth

soldier died later at a coalition medical facility of wounds suffered in the attack.

Two other soldiers were wounded and taken to a coalition medical facility for treatment, officials said. No report was available on their condition.

A Marine assigned to Multinational Force West was

killed yesterday while conducting combat operations in Iraq’s Anbar province. Officials provided no further details.

The servicemembers’ names are being withheld until next of kin are notified.

Meanwhile, the Defense Department has identified a soldier and a sailor who died earlier this week while deployed:

-- Army Pfc. Nickolas A. Tanton, 24, of San Antonio, died Feb. 13 in Kirkuk, Iraq, from non-combat related injuries. He was assigned to the 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.

-- Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Laquita Pate James, 23, of Orange Park, Fla., died Feb. 12 of apparent natural causes while deployed aboard the multipurpose amphibious assault ship the USS Bataan. The cause of death is under investigation. James was a master-at-arms supporting operations off the Horn of Africa aboard the USS Bataan.

(Compiled from Multinational Corps Iraq and Defense Department news releases.)

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