U.S. Army Spec. Tom killed in action in Afghanistan

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. - Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley Jr. said Friday the Navajo Nation deeply grieves the loss of another of its servicemen in War on Terror in Afghanistan.

U.S. Army Specialist Troy Orion Tom, 21, was killed in action last Monday, Afghanistan local time, by an improvised explosive device in Kandahar Province.

Spec. Tom was the son of Carolyn and David Tom of Beclabito, N.M. Tom is a Navajo Nation Council Delegate representing Beclabito-Cudeii.

"It was with great sadness that I heard of the loss of one of our brave Navajo soldiers," President Shirley said. "On behalf of the Navajo Nation, I offer our deepest condolences to the family of the late Army Specialist Troy Tom. We offer our sympathies and prayers to his entire family. We pray they find the strength to carry them through this difficult time, knowing that their son's contribution to his country is deeply appreciated and will be remembered."

The funeral for Spec. Tom is scheduled for today, Aug. 26, at the Farmington Civic Center.

President Shirley issued a proclamation on Monday to have flags on the Navajo Nation flown at half-staff in honor of Spec. Tom through sundown Aug. 29.

Spec. Tom was a 2006 graduate of Aztec High School in Aztec, N.M. He joined the U.S. Army on June 13, 2006. After basic training, he was stationed at Fort Lewis, Wash.

He is the ninth Navajo Nation serviceman killed in the War on Terror.

Spec. Tom is survived by his parents; brothers Seve Tom, 24 and Leon Harvey, 13; sister Carrizoe, 19, all of Beclabito; and his maternal grandmother Nellie Benally of Shiprock, N.M.

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