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Soldier from California Killed in Afghan IED Blasta

New Cuyama, California native Sgt. Christopher L. Muniz was killed in Afghanistan on December 11. The Department of Defense reports the 24-year-old Muniz died from wounds he suffered when his unit was hit with an improvised explosive device.

Muniz was assigned to the 3rd Brigade Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii.

Killed alongside Muniz was 30-year-old Spc. Ronald H. Wildrick Jr. of Blairstown, New Jersey.

Honolulu television station KITV reports Muniz was killed during his first deployment to Afghanistan. According to the station, he had been in the Army since 2008. He is survived by his wife.

KITV lists Muniz's awards and decorations as the following:

Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Bronze Service Star, Global War on Terrorism Medal and the Army Service Ribbon. Posthumous Awards include: Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart, NATO Medal and the Combat Action Badge.