Last week, the Defense Department announced the death of 29-year-old Army Sgt. Donna Johnson from Raeford, North Carolina. Donna, and two other US soldiers, Sgt. Thomas Butler, 25, from Wilmington, North Carolina, and Sgt. Jeremy Hardison 23, of Marysville, North Carolina, were killed October 1, by a Taliban suicide bomber who struck as the soldiers were on patrol in an outdoor market in Khost, Afghanistan. All three soldiers were members of the 514th Military Police Company, 60th Troop Command, Winterville, North Carolina.
A total of 14 people, including an Afghan translator and 4 Afghan police officers, were killed in the attack, when a suicide bomber drove his explosive-laden motorcycle into a crowd where a joint U.S.-Afghan patrol was operating. Three American soldiers and about 60 Afghan civilians were reported to have been wounded in the attack. The Taliban contacted the Western media afterwards to take credit for the carnage.
On October 3, The American Military Partner Association, a support group for spouses of LGBT servicemembers and veterans, announced Donna’s death on their Facebook.Page, saying Donna was a married lesbian, survived by her wife Tracy Dice. Tracy is also a member of the military. Donna’s sister Rene said the couple had been together for years, since the days before the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. The American Military Partner Association has promised to publish the story of Donna and Tracy, and their devotion to their country and to one another, in the days to come.
This was the second combat tour for Donna, who served in Iraq in 2007-2008, after joining the National Guard in 2006. Her decorations include the Combat Action Badge, Iraq Campaign Medal and the Army Commendation Medal. Donna’s mother said she will be buried in her home town with full military honors.
You can see the video tribute to Donna below:
Portrait via AMPA Facebook.Page
Transfer Photo via U.S. Air Force by Adrian R. Rowan
We invite you to sign up for our new mailing list, and subscribe to The New Civil Rights Movement via email or RSS.