killed in Iraq
Jeungjim Na Kim died before he
got a chance to meet his newborn son
An Army private from Honolulu was killed in Iraqi combat this month, one week after another Hawaii soldier from the same unit died from wounds sustained in a bomb attack.
The Army yesterday announced the death of Pvt. Jeungjin Na Kim, 23, who was killed Oct. 6 when his patrol was attacked by enemy forces using small arms in Ar Ramadi.
Kim leaves behind his wife in Honolulu and a newborn son he never met.
Ayoung Kim said she gave birth to their son Sept. 7.
"He was so excited to have his son like you would never believe," Ayoung Kim told television station KHON. "Most parents are excited but ... he was kind of lonely because he was an only kid and he always wanted a huge family."
She said she spoke to her husband about six hours before he left on the Oct. 6 mission.
"He was the total strong one in the family," she said. "I was always like that weak one that was always crying on the phone because he wasn't here."
Kim was with the 2nd Infantry Division, which deployed to Iraq from South Korea in August.
On Sept. 29, Pfc. Joshua K. "Buzz" Titcomb, 20, also of the 2nd Infantry Division, died of injuries he received a day earlier in Ar Ramadi when an improvised explosive device exploded near his military vehicle. He graduated from Waianae High School in 2000.
Kim was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery, from Camp Hovey in South Korea. Titcomb was a member of 72nd Armor Regiment from Camp Casey in South Korea.
Services for Titcomb will be held at 9 a.m. today at Sacred Hearts Catholic Church in Waianae. Private burial services will follow at the Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery in Kaneohe.
The Army said Kim's funeral arrangements are pending and burial is expected to be in the islands.
Since the Iraqi war started in March 2003, 14 soldiers and one civilian with Hawaii ties have been killed. Of the 15 deaths in Iraq, 14 were due to hostile action. Seven of them were from the 25th Infantry Division. Four 25th Division soldiers were killed in Afghanistan.
The 2nd Infantry Division left South Korea in August for a one-year deployment to Iraq. It replaced the 1st Infantry Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team, which had been operating in the Ramadi area for one year.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.