The Department of Defense said a rocket attack in Iraq Wednesday has killed an airman from Owasso.
The Department of Defense said SSgt. Marshal Roberts is the first Oklahoma Air National Guard member killed in action since the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
The 28-year-old left for his first deployment in late 2019 and died during a mission to support the Iraqi government and their forces.
"We all remember he served with honor and strength and dignity, and that's how we'll keep him in our hearts,” said Col. Michael Meason, commander of the 138th Fighter Wing.
Meason said Roberts in the 219th Engineering Installation Squadron, which is headquartered in Tulsa.
"One of our strengths as an Air National Guard family is our ability to come together in tough times like this and help each other and demonstrate the resiliency that we all like to call part of the Oklahoma standard,” said Meason.
Roberts' National Guard family is also supporting his daughter, wife, parents, sisters and friends left behind.
"He's so brilliant, intelligent guy, mechanically inclined,” said Earl Groves, a family friend. “Just call Marshall. He'd figured who could come to your rescue, whether you're moving a house or got a broke car."
Groves said Roberts went to Owasso High School and studied at OSU Institute of Technology then, found his passion in serving and enlisted in 2014.
"The family's lost a huge loss, the community's lost a huge loss, certainly the nation,” said Groves. “This young man gave it all. He gave the supreme sacrifice of his life for the protection of the freedoms that we enjoy here in the United States."
The Department of Defense said Wednesday's attack also killed an army specialist from California and one U.K. service member.
14 others were wounded.
The Department of Defense is still investigating what happened.