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Associated Press, Published December 10 2012

Funeral scheduled for fallen North Dakota soldier

BISMARCK — Funeral services have been scheduled for one of the two North Dakota National Guard soldiers killed in Afghanistan last week.

Services for Sgt. 1st Class Darren Linde, 41, of Devils Lake, will be at 1 p.m. Mountain time Tuesday at the Richland County Event Center in Sidney, Mont., the city where he grew up and graduated from high school in 1989, according to Fulkerson Funeral Home.

Funeral arrangements are pending for Spc. Tyler Orgaard, 20, of Bismarck. Eastgate Funeral Service in Bismarck is handling those arrangements.

The two men died in a roadside bomb attack in southern Afghanistan on Dec. 3. A third soldier, Spc. Ian Placek, 23, of Bismarck, was wounded in the attack and taken to a hospital in Germany, where he was in stable condition. The Guard said he is to be transferred to a hospital at Fort Riley, Kan., for further treatment.

Linde's remains were flown into Sidney on Sunday and turned over to his family in a ceremony that included flags at half-staff and a police escort.

"Obviously, when we have one of our own killed in action it's a very difficult situation," Sgt. DeAnn Fylling, a member of the military funeral honors team that accompanied the remains, told KXMC-TV. "There are a number of people on our funeral honors team that knew Sgt. Linde and so we hear the stories, and this morning we met his wife and family. So it's very difficult but it's a great honor also to be a part of this."

Orgaard's remains were being flown into Bismarck on Monday afternoon. The remains of both soldiers had been flown into Dover Air Force Base in Delaware last Wednesday.

Linde, Orgaard and Placek were serving with the Williston-based 818th Engineer Company, which has been in Afghanistan since June.

Linde and Orgaard are the 13th and 14th North Dakota National Guard soldiers to die in Iraq or Afghanistan in the war on terror. They are the first Guard casualties in six years.


Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.