Special Operations News

Special Forces Soldier Dies in Afghanistan

FORT BRAGG, NC – A Special Forces Soldier died January 28, 2011 in a non-combat related incident in Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. The cause of his death is still under investigation.

Sgt. 1st Class Anthony Venetz, Jr., 30, was a Special Forces engineer sergeant assigned to Co. A, 2nd Bn., 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne).

Venetz, a native of Long Island, N.Y., enlisted in the Army in February, 2001, in Prince William, Va., as an infantryman, and attended Basic Combat Training and Advanced Individual Training at Fort Benning, Ga.

His first assignment was with the 1st Bn., 22nd Inf. Regiment out of Fort Hood, Texas, where he was assigned to a scout platoon. During this time he deployed to Cuba and twice to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

In 2007, Venetz volunteered to become a Special Forces Soldier. He graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course in March, 2009, and was assigned to A Co, 2nd Bn., 7th SFG (A).

His other military education includes the Warrior Leaders Course, Basic Noncommissioned Officer Course, Combat Lifesaver Course, Basic Airborne Course, Army Sniper Course, and the Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape Course.

His awards and decorations include two Bronze Star Medals, one with valor, two Purple Heart Awards, four Army Commendation Medals, with two for valor, Army Good Conduct Medal , National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, NCO Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Ribbon, Presidential Unit Citation, Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Meritorious Unit Award, Special Forces Tab, Combat Infantryman Badge, Expert Infantryman Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

He is survived by his wife and two children.

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