Updated, July 12, 3:05 p.m.:
Both men were alumni of Columbia Public Schools. Board of Education President Tom Rose shared this statement:
â??Our graduates go on to many things, including military service. We are proud of our students that serve our country through the military. We are extremely saddened to learn of the deaths of two of our former students as they served their country through the military. Our thoughts and prayers go out to their families and friends."
Spc. Sterling Wyatt died at age 21 on Wednesday. He was part of the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash.
Two Columbia men with military ties have died recently.
Zane Lee, a 20-year-old Army reservist from Columbia and 2010 Hickman High School graduate, died last weekend in Indiana. He was deployed there at Camp Atterbury. An online obituary gave no details of his death except to say he died surrounded by his family and friends.
Services with full military honors was planned for Saturday, with arrangements by Bach Yeager Funeral Service.
Sterling Wyatt, a 2009 Rock Bridge High School graduate, was killed in Afghanistan when an IED hit his vehicle. At this time, there is no information about arrangements.
Wyatt attended First Baptist Church where his former pastor recalls Wyatt as an active, caring member. John Baker says he worked with Wyatt as he earned his God and County badge on his way to becoming an Eagle Scout. Baker says Wyatt was also an expert marksman and black belt on tae kwon do. You can hear more from Baker about Wyatt's life in this extended interview on Youtube.