The Pentagon recently issued a statement confirming Command Sgt. Maj. Martin R. Barreras died on May 13 in Texas following injuries he suffered in Afghanistan on May 6.
Barreras was a 22 year veteran of the Army’s 75th Ranger Regiment, where he served multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. His deployment also included stints in Panama and Haiti.
According to Fox News, Barreras was one of the Army Rangers who helped rescue prisoner of war Jessica Lynch from an Iraqi hospital in 2003.
According to the Army Times, Barreras’s unit was attacked by enemy forces in Afghanistan’s Herat province on May 6. He suffered wounds during the exchange of fire, and was taken to San Antonio Military Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas, where he died on Tuesday. He was 49 years old.
Lt. Col. Edward Brady, the battalion commander deployed to Afghanistan with Barreras, issued a statement regarding the news.
“Command Sgt. Maj. Barreras was my friend and battle buddy. I’ve spent more time with him than my wife since I’ve taken command. I believe that I was the luckiest battalion commander in the Army to have him as my command sergeant major. While every soldier in this formation is extremely saddened by his loss, his Bobcats are doing exactly what he would expect of us: continuing on with the mission and taking the fight to the enemy. This man would do absolutely anything and everything to ensure his soldiers came home safely,” Brady said.