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Second Navajo soldier dies while serving in Iraq

A second member of the Navajo Nation has died while serving in Iraq.

Army Pfc. Harry N. Shondee, Jr., 19 of Ganado, New Mexico, died on Monday from injuries sustained from a car bombing while on patrol in Baghdad on Sunday. He was one of two soldiers killed in the incident.

Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley, Jr. met with Shondee's family this week. He told them that their son "made the greatest sacrifice to defend a freedom we all take for granted. Our hearts are hurting with you." He also issued a proclamation in Shondee's honor.

Shondee, graduated from Ganado High School last year and immediately enlisted in the U.S. Army. He is survived by his parents, two brothers and three sisters.

"My son thought about other people first and he always had questions, like �why can�t people just get along,'" his mother, Isabel, said.

My son did not die in vain. He left us in the most honorable way; defending our country," his father, Harry Sr., said. "I want the people to know that he cared for his family, his Navajo people and the United States.

The family is in the process of establishing a bank account for donations and contributions to be used to pay for funeral expense. They also hope to establish a higher education scholarship endowment fund in honor of their son.

In April, Army Sgt. Lee Duane Todacheene, 29, was kiled in Iraq. He was the nephew of vajo Nation Vice President Frank Dayish Jr.

Get the Story:
Local soldier killed in Iraq (The Farmington Daiy Times 8/6)
Soldier Remembered for Smile, Bear Hugs (AP 8/5)

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