Insurgent Attack Kills Colville Soldier - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

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Insurgent Attack Kills Colville Soldier

KHQ.COM - A soldier from Colville, Washington was killed in combat after an attack on his unit in Afghanistan.

Staff Sergeant Wyatt Goldsmith, 28, died Friday from injuries sustained from rocket propelled grenade fire on Friday. The medical sergeant was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group, Joint Base Lewis-McChord. This was the Green Beret soldier's 3rd deployment overseas.

The Colville High School Alum joined the military in 2004 and had been wounded in combat in Afghanistan twice before July 15th. He was awarded 2 Purple Hearts for those injuries, and another posthumously.

Friends and fellow soldiers describe the fallen hero as a dedicated and brave teammate who loved his family and always put others before himself.

"He was a phenomenal soldier as well as friend and brother to us, someone that we had a lot of respect for," said Captain Phil K, who served with Goldsmith in Iraq and Afghanistan. "Wyatt embodied a quiet professional, something we all strive to be. He was an easygoing, laid back guy who was really, really good at what he did."

Goldsmith's hometown community is also feeling the pain of his loss, and doing what they can to support his family. Neighbor Barbara Richartz stopped by the family home to comfort his parents after they attended a church service.

"They're proud of him, they love him, they worried about him....they're just doing horrible, it's hard." said a tearful Richartz. "We're all just heartsick."

Richartz describes Goldsmith as a kind young man with a peaceful aura around him.

"He had a gentle spirit about him… he was respectful and he was kind and laid back," said Richartz. "He had so much value and so much promise and it's just sad he's not going to be able to fulfill any of it now."

Goldsmith body will likely be flown to Dover on Tuesday, then transferred to Join Base Lewis-McChord. He is survived by his parents and sister.  

PRESS RELEASE:

FORT BRAGG, N.C. – Staff Sergeant Wyatt A. Goldsmith, 28, of Colville, Wash., died July 15, 2011 in Helmand province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered after enemy forces engaged his unit.

Goldsmith was assigned to Company A, 3rd Battalion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne), Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash. and was deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom-Afghanistan. This was Goldsmith's 3rd deployment in support of Overseas Contingency Operations.

Born in Redmond, Wash. on September 21, 1982, Goldsmith entered the U.S. Army in June 2004 as a Special Forces recruit.

In October 2004, upon completion of basic training, advanced individual training and the basic airborne course at Fort Benning, Ga. he was assigned to the 1st Special Warfare Training Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, N.C. Goldsmith attended Special Forces Assessment and Selection in 2005 and was selected to continue his training as medical sergeant in the Special Forces Qualification Course.

After graduating from the Special Forces Qualification Course in 2008, Staff Sgt. Goldsmith was assigned to 3rd Batallion, 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) Joint Base Lewis-McChord as a Special Forces medical sergeant.

Goldsmith's military education includes the Special Forces Medical Sergeant Course, Military Freefall Parachutist Course, Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape Course, Basic Airborne Course, Advanced Leaders Course, and the Warrior Leader Course.

His awards include Bronze Star Medal with "V" Device, Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal (2nd Award), Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghan Campaign Medal with one campaign star, Iraqi Campaign Medal with two campaign stars, Global War on Terrorism Medal, Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, Parachutist Badge, Military Freefall Parachutist Badge, Special Forces Tab and Combat Infantryman Badge.

He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, and the Meritorious Service Medal.

He is survived by his parents John and Lorie Goldsmith of Colville, Wash. and his sister Nicole.

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