El Paso Soldier Killed

El Paso Soldier Killed

POSTED: Sunday, July 25, 2010 - 4:00pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, July 27, 2010 - 3:24pm

EL PASO, TX - We're learning more about a 20-year old El Paso soldier killed in Afghanistan.

Private First Class James O'Quin died friday in Afghanistan. He was only 20-years old.

The El Paso native was swept away by a current after a levee broke near his military vehicle. The investigation into his death is ongoing, his autopsy was scheduled for Sunday.

His mom didn't want to talk on camera, but she told us he wanted to serve his country since he was 10-years old. Fascinated by the military, O'Quin was in the JROTC program, and an El Paso Explorer. His mom says he helped build two homes for the habitat for humanity and was a loving person.

"If he knew you were down he would make you laugh by doing the silliest things," Michaela O'Quin said.

O'Quin was married, and his wife is expecting their first child. In fact, he was supposed to come home from Afghanistan in less than two weeks, and his wife is due in about a month. Now dreams of a complete family are shattered and his wife is left telling people on her Facebook page, "never take freedom for granted (because) it's not free, it has a really high price."

Funeral arrangements for O'Quin are pending. His family is now working on bringing his body back to El Paso.

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My thoughts, prayers and deepest condolences go out to his family. No words can ease the pain they are experiencing at this moment, may God bring you through what is undoubtly your darkest hour. God bless your family.

My heart aches to hear of this loss. This young man absolutely has paid with his life to keep us free. My deepest condolences to the family that will miss him so much. May his memory live forever with honor in the hearts of those that knew him and loved him. Rest in Peace my dear brother.

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