We are deeply saddened by the loss of U.S. Army Capt. Michael C. Braden.
The 31-year-old soldier grew up in Lock Haven, graduated from the former Lock Haven High School and then went on to begin his military career with training and a commission at Slippery Rock University.
Up until his passing last Wednesday in Bagram, Afghanistan, Capt. Braden served two tours in the Middle East, one in 2005 in Iraq and the other starting in 2010 in Afghanistan.
Along the way, Capt. Braden earned a Bronze Star Medal, an Army Commendation Medal and the Army Achievement Medal.
He was a signal officer assigned to the 1st Infantry Division Headquarters deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, and based in Fort Riley, Kansas.
Our hearts and prayers go out to Capt. Braden's wife and other family members.
With the loss of Capt. Braden, all American citizens who cherish freedom have lost a tiny bit of themselves.