A 22-year-old raised in Lynn who served with the US Army in Afghanistan died last week outside his base at Fort Campbell, Ky., according to a military spokesman and his family.
Sergeant First Class Pete Mayes, a spokesman for the base, identified the soldier Monday as Specialist Antonio Javier Syrakos.
Mayes did not disclose the precise location or time of Syrakos’s death, except to say that it occurred off the base. He released no additional details about the case and said it remains under investigation.
Mayes also referred questions to police in Clarksville, Tenn., which is about 10 miles from the Kentucky base. A spokesman for the Clarksville Police Department said he had no information about Syrakos’s death.
His parents, Doris and Paul Syrakos of Lynn, could not be reached for comment Monday, but told the Daily Item of Lynn that their son died Thursday in an accident outside the base, just two months before he was scheduled to return home.
The couple said that authorities have told them very little about what happened and that they are planning a funeral for later in the week.
“He survived firestorms and everything else in Afghanistan and he’s killed at home,” Doris Syrakos told the Item.
Mayes said Syrakos joined the Army in February 2010 and completed basic training at Fort Benning, Ga. He was assigned as an assistant gunner with the 101st Airborne Division and served in Afghanistan from 2010 to 2011.
Syrakos’s awards included the Army Commendation Medal, one Army Achievement Medal, one National Defense Service Medal, one Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, one Army Service Ribbon, one Combat Infantry Badge, and one Parachute badge, Mayes said.
In announcing the criteria for the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal in 2004, the Department of Defense said that recipients must have “engaged in actual combat against the enemy and under circumstances involving grave danger of death or serious bodily injury from enemy action.”
Mayes said that Syrakos completed the Army’s Airborne Course in 2010.Travis Andersen can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @TAGlobe.