SGT La David T. Johnson of the 3rd Special Forces Group was killed on Wednesday, October 4, 2017 in Niger as a result of hostile fire. He was participating in a joint patrol of U.S. Army Special Forces and host nation military forces that was conducting a reconnaissance mission. The SF team and Nigerien troops were in southwest Niger near the Mali border when they were attacked by a militant group of 50 plus fighters.
Three other U.S. members of the patrol, also from 3rd SFG(A), were killed and two detachment members were wounded. The wounded were evacuated from Niger and transported to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany.
SGT Johnson, age 25, is a native of Miami Gardens, Florida. He attended Carol City High and trained as an auto mechanic at ATI Career Training School.
His unit, the 3rd SFG(A) is based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Johnson enlisted in the Army in January 2014 as a Wheeled Vehicle Mechanic (91B).
His awards and decorations include the Army Achievement Medal, the Army Good Conduct Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Army Parachutist Bade, the Driver and Mechanic Badge, and the Marksmanship Qualification Badge. He also participated in operations with the Canadian Armed Forces and received Canadian Parachutist Wings.
SGT Johnson leaves behind a wife, a son, a daughter, and a child due to be born in January.
Additional News Reports:
DoD Identifies Army Casualty, DoD, October 7, 2017.
U.S. Soldier killed in Niger, Army.mil, October 7, 2017.
Africom Announces Death of 4th Service Member in Niger Attack, DoD, October 6, 2017.
A Soldier from Miami Gardens was part of the group killed in Niger ambush attack, Miami Herald, October 7, 2017.
Miami Gardens’ beloved ‘Wheelie King’ dies while fighting jihadists in Africa, Local 10 News ABC, October 7, 2017.
Wife Devastated After US Soldier Killed in Niger: ‘He Was Everything to Us‘, CBS Local, October 9, 2017.
Body of US Soldier Killed in Niger Returns Home to South Florida, CBS 4 News, October 17, 2017.
Scholarship fund Established for Children of Miami Gardens Soldier Killed in Niger, Miami Herald, October 18, 2017.
Three Green Berets Killed in Niger, SOF News, October 4, 2017.
Special Forces in Niger – Countering Terrorist Groups, SOF News, October 4, 2017.
Africa and 3rd Special Forces Group, SOF News, July 9, 2017.