A.J. soldier killed by roadside bomb in Afghanistan

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Sgt. 1st Class Johnathan B. McCain By Catherine Holland Sgt. 1st Class Johnathan B. McCain By Catherine Holland

APACHE JUNCTION, Ariz. -- Arizona has lost another soldier to Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

Sgt. 1st Class Johnathan B. McCain of Apache Junction was killed Sunday by a roadside bomb while on patrol in the Kandahar province.

McCain, 38, was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 5th Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division based at Fort Wainwright, Alaska. Formed in 1808, the battalion has taken part in every major campaign from the War of 1821 to Vietnam.

Since joining the Army in April 1992, McCain, who is not related to Arizona Sen. John McCain, served in Kaiserlautern, Germany; Fort Hood, Texas and Fort Bragg, N.C. He has been stationed at Fort Wainwright since October 2000.

McCain served two combat tours in Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. His first was August 2005 to November 2006. His second was September 2008 to September 2009.

He deployed with his 4,000-Soldier unit to Afghanistan for a one-year tour in April. The brigade is training Afghan soldiers and police.

Another Fort Wainwright-based soldier was killed by a roadside bomb the day before McCain died. Eight more soldiers were wounded in those two weekend attacks.

Since the April deployment, a total of 17 soldiers from the Stryker Brigade have died in combat.

McCain is the 39th Arizona soldier to be killed in Operation Enduring Freedom.

The war in Afghanistan began on Oct. 7, 2001, making it the longest war in which the U.S. has been involved. Earlier this year, President Barack Obama announced that 10,000 U.S. troops would be withdrawn by the end of this year. An additional 23,000 are slated to leave Afghanistan by summer 2012.