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Published: Thursday, 9/29/2005

Toledo native killed in Iraq

BLADE STAFF

A Toledo native and father of two was killed in Iraq Tuesday, the victim of sniper fire.

Staff Sgt. Jason Benford, 30, of Fort Benning s 2nd Battalion, 69th Infantry Regiment, was killed in Ramadi, Iraq, his wife Kimberly Benford said from their Georgia home. He was serving his second tour in Iraq.

Mrs. Benford said her husband joined the military soon after graduating from Bowsher High School in 1993. The couple has two sons, Lane, 10, and Jacob, 4. Sergeant Benford s father, George, lives in north Toledo.

He s always been a special, special person, so even toned. He d handle all types of situations and not even break a sweat, said Mrs. Benford, 32. That was one of the things we appreciated so much, our family, but I know the soldiers did too.

Sergeant Benford was stationed in Ramadi, west of Baghdad. Mrs. Benford said military officials told her that her husband s unit was investigating the discovering of some weapons when he was struck by a sniper s single bullet.

It was very quick and he didn t suffer, she said tearfully.

Mrs. Benford said funeral arrangements are incomplete. She does not expect her husband s body to return from Iraq until early next week.

Read more inlater editions of The Blade and toledoblade.com.



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