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Roadside blast in Iraq kills Conn. soldier


HARTFORD -- Governor M. Jodi Rell ordered US and Connecticut flags lowered to half-staff yesterday in honor of a soldier from Bridgeport killed this week in a roadside bombing in Iraq.

Army Private Stephen K. Richardson, 22, died Tuesday when the bomb exploded near his vehicle, the Department of Defense said Wednesday. The blast also killed another soldier in his unit. They were soldiers with First Battalion, 28th Infantry, Fourth Brigade, First Infantry Division, based in Fort Riley, Kan.

He was the 38th person with Connecticut ties who has died since March 2002 in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"Private Richardson and thousands upon thousands of brave men and women like him serve our nation every day," Rell said. "Our gratitude runs deep, especially when such a young life is ended so soon."

Flags will remain at half-staff until Richardson is buried. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.