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Master sergeant and Army veteran found dead in training area at Fort Bragg

Mystery surrounds deaths of Special Forces soldier, 37, and a veteran whose bodies were discovered in a training area on Fort Bragg

  • Bodies of Master Sgt. William Lavigne II, 37, and an unnamed veteran who previously served at Fort Bragg were found on the base on Wednesday 
  • Source said one of the bodies was found lying flat, while the other was wrapped in a blanket next to a pickup truck 
  • Army officials said two men were found in a training area, but their deaths were not related to official unit training 
  • Lavigne was a Special Forces soldier who served 19 years in the military and deployed multiple times to Iraq and Afghanistan   

The bodies of an active-duty Special Forces soldier and an Army veteran were discovered earlier this week in a training area at Fort Bragg, where one of the deceased men was said to be wrapped in a blanket.   

A statement from the North Carolina post said the bodies were found on Wednesday and that their deaths are not related to official unit training. 

On Friday, one of the two men was identified as Master Sgt. William Lavigne II, 37. He was assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, U.S. Army Special Operations Command.

Master Sgt. William Lavigne II, 37, a Special Forces solider, was identified on Friday as one of the two men who were found dead in a training area at Fort Bragg 

The other man was a veteran who previously served at Fort Bragg. His name has not been released.

WRAL reported, citing an unnamed source familiar with the matter, that one body was found lying flat on the ground. The other was wrapped in a blanket near a pickup truck.  

‘The loss of a Soldier is always tragic,’ Lt. Col. Justin Duvall, commander of HHC, U.S. Army Special Operations Command, said in a statement. ‘Master Sgt. Lavigne dedicated himself to the Army for 19 years and deployed multiple times in the defense of our Nation. Our condolences go out to his family during this difficult time.’

Lavigne enlisted in the Army in 2001 and deployed multiple times to Afghanistan and Iraq in support of the Global War on Terrorism.

A source said one of the bodies was found lying flat, while the other was wrapped in a blanket next to a pickup truck. According to officials at Fort Bragg, the deaths are not related to official unit training

In 2007, he graduated from the Special Forces Qualification Course and was assigned to the 1st Special Forces with a follow on assignment to US Army Special Operations Command. 

The deaths are being investigated by special agents from the Army Criminal Investigation Command. 

Fort Bragg, covering nearly 172,000 acres, is one of the world’s largest military complexes, according to its website. It has approximately 57,000 military personnel, 11,000 civilian employees and 23,000 family members.

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