3 Army soldiers die by suicide in 2 days

National

FORT DRUM, NY – MAY 18: The 10th Mountain Division soldiers prepare to board a Blackhawk helicopter while on a training mission for future deployments on May 18, 2016 at Fort Drum, New York. Although most U.S. combat forces have been withdrawn from the continuing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the troops are on near-constant training exercises for future conflicts. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

FORT DRUM, N.Y. (NewsNation Now) — The Army is investigating after three service members died by suicide in a two-day period at Fort Drum in upstate New York.

A spokesperson told NewsNation the deaths of Private First Class Tyler Thomas, 21, Specialist Sika Tapueluelu, 26, and Staff Sergeant Angel Green, 24, were separate, self-inflicted and unrelated.

The deaths were among members of the famed 10th Mountain Division.

Members of the unit are among those brought back stateside during the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan. More than 100 soldiers from the 4th battalion, 31st infantry had been there for more than nine months. They were responsible for securing Kabul’s airport as the city fell to the Taliban. 

Despite the dangerous mission, there were no combat casualties within the unit.

A source told NewsNation one of the soldiers was among the very last to return home. His deployment is not believed to be related to his death.

September is national Suicide Prevention Month. The military is working to remind service members to reach out if they need help.

“If you have problems, challenges, or issues, there is help available from this chain of command all the way down to help you get the resources you need,” Maj. Gen, Milford H. Beagle, Jr. said. “Do not suffer in silence.” 

During the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, PTSD and related self-harm became one of the biggest issues facing the U.S. military. The latest report on service member suicides prepared earlier this year by the Veterans Administration found four times as many troops and veterans have died by suicide as in combat.

If you or someone you know is thinking of harming themselves, call the suicide prevention hotline at 800-273-8255.

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