Soldier dies in Kenya after vehicle accident

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Staff Sgt. Marek A. Soja, 30, of Philadelphia, died June 12 from injuries sustained in a vehicle accident while assigned to temporary duty in Kenya, conducting training with the Kenyan military.

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, June 14, 2013)–Staff Sgt. Marek A. Soja, 30, of Philadelphia, Pa., died June 12, 2013, in Kenya of injuries sustained in a vehicle accident.

Soja was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, Fort Bragg, N.C., as a movement supervisor. He was on temporary duty in Kenya, providing logistic support to U.S. military personnel conducting training activities with the Kenyan military.  The training is part of U.S. Africa Command’s mission to strengthen the defense capabilities of African states and regional organizations.

Soja enlisted in the Army in June, 2005 as a Motor Transport Operator. Upon completion of basic training and advanced individual training, Soja was assigned to Company A, 58th Transportation Battalion, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. He was re-assigned for Fort Drum in October 2005, where he served as a vehicle driver in Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 3rd Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment. In February 2007 he was assigned to Camp Ederle, Italy, where he served in a variety of positions in the Combat Support Battalion of the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He joined the Special Operations Logistics Support Element, based at Ft. Bragg, in January 2012, serving as a movement supervisor, and in February 2013 was reassigned to HHC USASOC.

Soja completed numerous military courses while serving in the U.S. Army, to include the Warrior Leader Course, Basic Airborne Course, Survival Evasion Resistance Escape High Risk Survival Course, Advanced Leader Course, Combat Lifesaver Course, Air Assault Course, Motor Transportation Course, Battle Staff Course, Technical Transportation Hazmat Course, and Field Sanitation Team Training Course.

Soja’s awards and decorations include Army Commendation Medal with two oak leaf clusters, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Joint Meritorious Unit Award with oak leaf cluster, Valorous Unit Award, Meritorious Unit Commendation, two U.S. Army Good Conduct Medals, National Defense Service Ribbon, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with 2 Campaign Stars, Global War On Terrorism Service medal, Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon with two oak leaf clusters, NATO Medal, Driver and Mechanic Badge, Parachutist Badge, and Air Assault Badge.

He is survived by his wife, daughter and parents.


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