Army Staff Sgt. Scott W. Brunkhorst
Died March 30, 2010 serving during Operation Enduring Freedom
25, of Fayetteville, N.C.; assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died March 30 in the Arghandab River Valley, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
(The following was taken from fayobserver.com of Apr. 6, 2010) An 82nd Airborne Division soldier from Fayetteville died in Afghanistan last week in a homemade bomb blast.
Staff Sgt. Scott W. Brunkhorst, 25, was killed in the Arghandab River valley just north of Kandahar city on March 30 while his unit was on a foot patrol.
He was assigned to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team.
"Staff Sgt. Brunkhorst, or Brunk as we knew him, was a warrior and provided simple solutions to problems others couldn't figure out," said Capt. Adam Armstrong, his company commander. "He had the exact type of courage that inspires men under extreme adversity."
For Brunkhorst's wife, Krystal, it was love at first sight. All it took was a phone number and 11 days before she said yes to his marriage proposal.
"If I could dream up a guy, it would be him," she said. "He knew everything about everything."
Brunkhorst enlisted in the Army as an infantryman in August 2003.
Brunkhorst deployed to Afghanistan for 15 months in February 2007. He was promoted to the rank of sergeant during the deployment.
Upon returning from the deployment, Brunkhorst attended Warriors Leaders Course and was promoted to the rank of staff sergeant in October 2008. This was his second deployment.
Brunkhorst could put a car engine together as easily as he could decorate a room in their house, his wife said, describing her husband as a complete romantic.
"The last time he was home, he took us to the mountains skiing and showed me a DVD slide show he made for me," she said.
Brunkhorst last talked to his wife on the computer March 29. He wanted to wish her an early happy birthday before he left on a patrol mission, his wife said.
"He pursued a terrorist and forced him to detonate his bomb so he couldn't hurt his men," she said.
A week ago, on her 25th birthday, Ms. Brunkhorst heard a knock on her front door. She thought her husband had ordered flowers for her birthday. She opened the door to see two casualty officers standing before her.
"I knew right then," she said.
Brunkhorst's military awards and decorations include the Army Commendation medal with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster, the Army Achievement Medal and the Army Good Conduct Medal among others.
"Despite the sadness felt by leaders, paratroopers, and our partners here in Afghanistan, we need only remember the man that we have lost and what he has given us to determine the way ahead. Staff Sgt. Brunkhorst stood with us and lived the standard each and every day," Jones, the battalion commander, said in a note posted on Facebook.
Twenty-one paratroopers from the 4th Brigade Combat Team have died since the unit deployed from Fort Bragg in August.
The 2nd Battalion is stationed in the Arghandab River valley, just north of Kandahar, as part of a team creating a ring of security around the city. The valley is sometimes called the most dangerous place in Afghanistan.
Brunkhorst is survived by his wife, Krystal, 25; his daughter, Kendall, 3 and his father and stepmother, Richard and Linda Brunkhorst.