Fort Lewis soldier one of three killed in attack

Another Fort Lewis soldier has died in Iraq, the Pentagon announced Friday evening, the 10th soldier assigned to the Army post to die there in less than two weeks.

Pfc. Aaron D. Gautier, 19, of Hampton, Va., died Thursday in Baghdad when enemy forces attacked his mounted patrol with small-arms fire and an improvised explosive device, the Pentagon announcement said.

Three soldiers were killed and one was wounded in the attack, according to a U.S. Central Command news release. The identities of the two other soldiers who were killed hadn’t been released as of Friday night.

Gautier was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment of the 4th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division. He is the second soldier from the brigade to be killed in Iraq since it arrived there recently.

Gautier enlisted in the Army a few months before his 18th birthday, according to the Daily Press newspaper of Hampton Roads, Va.

His father, Dan, told the newspaper he balked at giving his son permission to enlist, but Aaron was so intent on serving that he relented. Gautier married in January.

“They were together day and night until he left,” Pat LeNorman, Gautier’s grandmother, told the newspaper about Gautier and his wife.

Gautier is the 109th service member assigned to Fort Lewis killed in Iraq.

On Friday, mourners attended a memorial service for Pfc. Anthony J. Sausto, 22, the first soldier from the brigade killed in Iraq. He died May 10 during an attack in Baghdad.