Soldier from Maine killed in Afghanistan

June 22, 2010

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AUGUSTA, Maine—A soldier from Maine who was the crew chief of a Black Hawk helicopter has been killed in Afghanistan, officials said Tuesday.

Sgt. Brandon Silk, 25, was killed Monday from injuries suffered during a hard helicopter landing, said U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree. Silk served with the 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell, Ky.

Officials did not have additional details surrounding his death. The Department of Defense has not released any information.

Silk grew up in Orono, the oldest of Mark and Lynn Silk's three sons, said Orono High School Assistant Principal Bob Sinclair. Silk's father is a detective with the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles office of investigations. His mother is a school principal in Milford.

Silk played football and ran track in high school and joined the military upon graduation, Sinclair said.

His family issued a statement saying that he died "honorably and with respect" while serving his country.

"He was a son, a brother, a nephew, and a cousin -- and was well-loved by everyone in this family," the statement read. "We have always been a tight-knit family and Brandon's spirit will live on through memories of his sense of humor, his love for adventure, and the memories he created through his unique, outgoing, strong personality."

Gov. John Baldacci said he will order flags flown at half-staff on the day of Silk's funeral.

"Sgt. Silk was a hero, and we will honor his life and his sacrifice," the governor said.

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