Grandmother speaks about soldier killed in Iraq - - Columbia, South Carolina

Grandmother speaks about soldier killed in non-combat incident in Iraq

Shawn Evans (Source: Facebook) Shawn Evans (Source: Facebook)
Spc. Shawn Evans (Source: U.S. Army) Spc. Shawn Evans (Source: U.S. Army)

By Judi Gatson - bio | email

BAGHDAD, IRAQ (WIS) - A soldier from Columbia on his second deployment has died in Iraq from non-combat related injuries, according to the Department of Defense.   

Specialist Lashawn D. Evans, 24, of Columbia died in a non-combat related incident on Tuesday while supporting Operation New Dawn in Baghdad Province, Iraq, according to the Department of Defense.

Evans was at the end of his second tour in Iraq, and his family was happy about him heading home. His grandmother says they were all flying out to Fort Riley, Kansas on Monday for his unit's homecoming. But with one phone call, everything changed.

Army investigators are not releasing any additional information about Evans' death, other than to say his death is under investigation.

Evans' grandmother just talked to him a few days ago, and remembers him as "a very nice, honorable, sweet young man." the heartache was too much for her to do a full interview, but she spent some time telling us about the young man she calls her baby.

Family members say "Shawn" Evans graduated from Richland Northeast High School, and entered the Army to support his wife of three years and 4-year-old daughter. Officials at Fort Riley said Evans' wife, Cierra, is also currently serving in Iraq.

A recent post on Facebook shows Evans was counting down the days. It says, "ima be home soon 13 days left in iraq"

His grandmother says a big celebration was planned for his return home next week. Now Evans' grandmother says his wife, as well as his brother on duty in Afghanistan, are headed home to plan his funeral.

Evans was part of the 1st Infantry Division based at Fort Riley. He was a petroleum supply specialist, and arrived at Fort Riley in July 2008. Evans unit deployed to Iraq in March 2010.

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