Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Service set for Tucson GI killed in Afghanistan

Citizen Staff Writer



A memorial service for Master Sgt. David L. Hurt, who was raised in Tucson and killed Friday in Afghanistan, will be held Monday at a North Side VFW post.

The service is being arranged by Hurt’s boyhood friends, who also are military veterans.

The service is scheduled for 4 p.m. at the Casas Adobes VFW Post 10188, 345 E. Roger Road, said Joshua Martin, a friend of Hurt and an Army veteran.

Samuel Martin, Joshua Martin’s younger brother, said the Arizona Army National Guard’s Tucson-posted 860th Military Police Company will provide a color guard and a chaplain for the service.

Joshua Martin said he expects some 400 to 500 people to attend.

“He’s a local hero,” Joshua Martin said of Hurt.

“It’s a sad thing, not just that he was a friend, but he was one of our servicemen, one of our heroes . . . it’s a tragedy,” Alexander McKenna said.

McKenna also was a boyhood friend of Hurt’s and is an ex-Marine.

“It saddens me. It deeply saddens me,” McKenna said.

But, Hurt, an Army veteran of 17 years’ service, knew, “you may die for what you believe in.”

Hurt was a Santa Rita High school graduate, who “loved being a soldier” and “was proud of his country,” said his mother, Bonnie Hurt.

The Department of Defense said Sunday that Hurt, 36, and a soldier from Illinois died from wounds caused by an improvised explosive device.

They were in a military vehicle Friday near Khordi in Oruzgan province when they were attacked.

Small-arms fire followed during the attack by enemy forces.

Bonnie Hurt said she talked to her son Wednesday, two days before his death.

A medic in her son’s unit had been killed the week before and Hurt and other soldiers in the unit were having a difficult time dealing with his death, Bonnie Hurt said.

“He was telling me they were taking the death of the medic hard and he was trying to keep his men occupied,” she said.

Her son always signed off telling his mother he loved her, and Wednesday was no exception.

“He said, ‘I’ve got to go, I love you,’ ” she recalled.

Hurt and the other soldier killed with him, Staff Sgt. Jeremy E. Bessa, 26, were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group in Fort Bragg, N.C.

Bessa died at the scene while Hurt died from his wounds after being evacuated to Kandahar Airfield for treatment, according to the Army.

Hurt, a native of Oak Park, Ill., moved to Tucson with his family at age 3, his 65-year-old mother said.

He enlisted in Tucson in November 1992, according to the Army.

Before that, his mother said, he had graduated from Santa Rita High, where he played football.

“He went in (to the Army) on Veterans Day,” she said.

She said he was proud to be in the elite Special Forces.

Hurt loved Tucson and “talked about it all the time,” his mother said.

After basic and advanced training, he was assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, N.C., and later to the 20th Engineer Brigade.

He earned his Green Beret in May 2000 and was assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne).

Hurt lived in Grays Creek, N.C., before he left for Afghanistan in January on his fifth deployment.

His awards and decorations include the Bronze Star with two Oak Leaf Clusters, Meritorious Service Medal, the Joint Commendation Medal, Master Parachutist Badge, Pathfinder Badge, the Valorous Unit Award and the Joint Meritorious Unit Award, according to his Army biography.

He is survived by his wife, Kelly, daughter, Avery, and son, Wyatt, all of Grays Creek, N.C.; his mother, Bonnie Hurt and sister Deborah Hurt, both of Hope Mills, N.C.; and his father, Joe Hurt of Memphis, Tenn.

Our Fallen

To read about other Tucson-area military personnel killed in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, go to tucsoncitizen.com/fallen.

To read other stories about local casualties or about the impact of the war here, go to tucsoncitizen.com/warathome.

Our Digital Archive

This blog page archives the entire digital archive of the Tucson Citizen from 1993 to 2009. It was gleaned from a database that was not intended to be displayed as a public web archive. Therefore, some of the text in some stories displays a little oddly. Also, this database did not contain any links to photos, so though the archive contains numerous captions for photos, there are no links to any of those photos.

There are more than 230,000 articles in this archive.

In TucsonCitizen.com Morgue, Part 1, we have preserved the Tucson Citizen newspaper's web archive from 2006 to 2009. To view those stories (all of which are duplicated here) go to Morgue Part 1

Search site | Terms of service