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Two Soldiers From North Jersey Die in Afghanistan

The Defense Department says two soldiers from New Jersey have died in Afghanistan.

Walter B. McKenzie, Getty Images

Spc. Jonathan Batista, a 22-year-old Kinnelon resident, died Sunday in Zharay — part of the Kandahar province — when enemy forces attacked his unit with small arms fire. Batista was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 321st Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg in North Carolina.

Batista’s death came four days after Staff Sgt. Raul Guerra, a 37-year-old Union City resident, died in Spin Boldak. A cause of death was not disclosed for Guerra, who was assigned to the 502nd Military Intelligence Battalion, 201st Battlefield Surveillance Brigade, Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington state.

Both deaths were announced Monday.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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