U.S. Army Capt. Andrew Pedersen-Keel, who graduated from Avon Old Farms School in 2002, has been killed in Afghanistan.
"Obviously I and everyone in the Avon Old Farms School family extends the deepest sympathy to his family," Avon Old Farms Headmaster Kenneth H. LaRocque told NBC Connecticut in a statement.
The death of the Madison native is being mourned by neighbors, Madison residents, those who knew him, and everyone who appreciated his service to his country. Pedersen-Keel was a 2006 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, Madison Patch reports.
Madison First Selectman Fillmore McPherson said , Madison Patch reports. He ordered town flags to be flown at half staff Tuesday and said that the town and police department are prepared to pay full respects at Pedersen-Keel's funeral if the family wishes it.
"With deep regret and great sadness we learn of the death in Afghanistan of Capt. Andrew Pedersen-Keel, United State Army, whose parents live here in Madison," said McPherson, who is a U.S. Navy veteran. "It is always sad to hear of such a loss, and doubly so when there is a local connection. On behalf of our entire town, our hearts go out to the parents in this tragic time."
The body of Capt. Pedersen-Keel is scheduled to return to the United States, to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where a dignified transfer is scheduled for 8:20 p.m. Tuesday, where family members are waiting, Madison Patch reported. According to the web site of U.S. Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations, which conducts the dignified transfer:
"A solemn dignified transfer ... is conducted upon arrival at Dover Air Force Base, Del., from the aircraft to a transfer vehicle to honor those who have given their lives in the service of our country. ... A dignified transfer is conducted for every U.S. military member who dies in the theater of operation while in the service of their country. A senior ranking officer of the fallen member's service presides over each dignified transfer."
NBC Connecticut said two American soldiers were killed in Wardak, an Eastern province, after a man disguised as an Afghan police officer shot at U.S. and Afghan soldiers.
Did you attend Avon Old Farms School while U.S. Army Capt. Andrew Pedersen-Keel was there? Condolences to the family are welcome in the comment section below.