updated 9:52 PM EDT, Mar 26, 2015
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Sgt. 1st Class Washington Vaalele Ale

FORT HOOD, Texas -- Officials have released the name of a Soldier who died from an apparent gunshot wound September 24, 2011 in Harker Heights.

Sgt. 1st Class Washington Vaalele Ale, 39, whose home of record is listed as Pago Pago, American Samoa, entered active-duty service in April 1992 as a cannon crewmember. He was assigned to 479th Field Artillery Brigade, First Army Division West, since April 2011.

Ale deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from October 2006 through December 2007 and again from August 2008 through October 2008.

Ale’s awards and decorations include a Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, three Army Commendation Medals, seven Army Achievement Medals,  six Army Good Conduct Medals, three National Defense Service Medals, Korea Defense Service Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal, Iraqi Campaign Medal with two campaign stars, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, three Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbons, Army Service Ribbon, three Overseas Service Ribbons, Kuwait Liberation Medal, Recruiter Badge-Gold with three Sapphire Achievement Stars, Combat Action Badge, Driver and Mechanic Badge, and a Basic Marksman Qualification Badge.  

Circumstances surrounding this incident are under investigation. A photo was not currently available.