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Three from 48th Brigade killed in Afghanistan

Three Georgia National Guardsmen from the 48th Brigade have been reported KIA in Afghanistan. Those killed were from the 1st Batallion, 108th Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition Squadron of the 48th Infantry Brigade Combat Team. They were identified as Maj. Kevin M. Jenrette, 37, of Lula; Staff Sgt. John C. Beale, 39, of Riverdale; and Spc. Jeffrey W. Jordan, 21, of Cave Spring. They died of wounds suffered when their convoy struck a roadside bomb and came under small arms fire near Kapisa province in northeast Afghanistan, according to the U.S. Defense Department. They were there to train Afghan security force officers and police forces. The unit had only been deployed for about three weeks. The brigade is deploying half of its 4,500 soldiers to Afghanistan over the next few weeks. Lt. Col. Kenneth Baldowski, the guard’s state public affairs officer, called their deaths a blow not just to the unit, but to the entire Guard. Jordan, who as a civilian was employed by Floyd County Prison, had a wife and a 1-year-old son. He enlisted in the guard in 2006. Jenrette was married and had three young children. He joined the Army in 1995 and served as a Ranger instructor. He became a member of the Georgia guard in 2005. Beale served with the Army from 1991 until his discharge in 1994, then joined the guard in 2005. His parents said he was a veteran of Operation Desert Storm in 1991, the first U.S.-Iraq war. A brother served in the U.S. invasion of Panama in 1989. Beale worked for the Clayton County Water Authority, where his wife, Crystal, also works. A son and daughter also survive him. Many from the 48th Brigade involved in the current deployment are from Lamar and Pike counties. (Sources: Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Associated Press).

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