Two Special Forces Soldiers killed in Afghanistan

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FORT BRAGG, N.C. – U.S. Special Forces Soldiers Master Sgt. Luis F. Deleon-Figueroa, 31, and Master Sgt. Jose J. Gonzalez, 35, were killed on August 21, during combat operations in Faryab Province, Afghanistan.

Both Soldiers were assigned to 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.

“It was an honor having them serve within the ranks of 7th SFG (A). They were a part of our Family, and will not be forgotten,” said Col. John W. Sannes, 7th SFG (A) commander.

Deleon-Figueroa, a native of Chicopee, Massachusetts, served more than 13 years in the Army.

He completed the Special Forces Qualification Course and was assigned to 1st Battalion, 7th SFG (A), in 2014 as a Special Forces communications sergeant, and then as a Special Forces operations and intelligence sergeant.

Deleon-Figueroa is a very decorated soldier deployed six times during his career.

Gonzalez, a native of La Puente, California was assigned to 1st Bn., 7th SFG (A), in 2014.

Master Sgt. Jose J. Gonzalez’s family has requested, no photos or additional information be released about Master Sgt. Gonzalez at this time.

More than 2,400 U.S. service personnel have died in Afghanistan since the U.S.-led invasion in 2001 to topple the Taliban, whose government had harbored al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

Now, the U.S. and Taliban are in negotiations on an end to nearly 18 years of fighting — America’s longest war.

The U.S. formally ended its Afghan combat mission in 2014 but still provides extensive air and other support to local forces battling both the Taliban and an affiliate of the Islamic State group.

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