Service on Tuesday morning for fallen Gustine soldier

July 2, 2012 

— A funeral service is set for 11 a.m. Tuesday at Our Lady of Miracles Catholic Church in Gustine to honor Sgt. Jose Rodriguez, 22, who died June 19 in Maiwand, Kandahar Province, Afghanistan.

The 2008 Gustine High School graduate served in the 4th Battalion, 23rd Infantry Regiment and was shot while on his second tour of Afghanistan.

Interment will follow at 1 p.m. in San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery, Santa Nella.

He died in a hostile rural territory where U.S. forces are trying to help build confidence in the Afghan government before the withdrawal of U.S. combat forces planned to occur by 2014, according to the Tacoma News-Tribune.

Rodriguez, who joined the Army in 2008, was assigned to Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Wash. He was scheduled to be done with his military service in December 2011, but decided to extend his stay with the Army to better provide for his family.

In 2010, Rodriguez married Maria Guadalupe Rodriguez, who goes by the name of Lupita. The couple has a 13-month-old son, Octavian.

Rodriguez's death is the fourth fatal casualty suffered by the roughly 700-man unit since it was deployed to Kandahar province in late April, the Tacoma News-Tribune reported. He had received the Army Achievement Medal and the Army Good Conduct Medal.

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