A U.S. service member born in Massachusetts died Friday while participating in Operation Inherent Resolve in northern Syria, according to the Department of Defense.
Spc. Etienne J. Murphy, 22, of Loganville, Georgia, died in a non-tactical vehicle rollover incident in Al-Hasakah. That incident remains under investigation.
According to the DoD, Murphy was assigned to 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Hunter Army Airfield, Georgia.
Murphy, nicknamed EJ, was born in Boston and raised in Brockton, Massachusetts. He enlisted in the U.S. Army from his hometown of Snellville, Georgia, in June 2013, the same year he married his high school sweetheart.
Calvin Murphy, Murphy's father, is a retired Boston firefighter and his aunt, Tisha Murphy, is currently a police officer in Boston.
His father said that his son died doing what he loved. "He always knew what he wanted to do," he said.
"My son died for this country... and I'm proud of what he did," said Murphy.
Murphy's father also said that his son loved skateboarding and fishing. They were starting a skateboard company together when he died.
He completed his training at Fort Benning, Georgia, as an infantryman. He was then assigned to 2nd Battalion, 22nd Infantry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, New York.
Murphy is survived by two sons, a two-year-old and a newborn. His father said that he was a dedicated dad.
He would "do anything for them," Murphy said.
Among the awards and decorations he received following his graduation were Parachutist Badge, Army Achievement Medal with 3 OLC, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal, and Operation Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal with Campaign Star.
He was posthumously awarded the Army Commendation Medal and his father said that he spoke on the phone with Mass. Senator Elizabeth Warren following Murphy's death.
Murphy's family will travel to Dover Air Force base in Delaware to receive his body on Sunday. His funeral will take place on June 4 at the First Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia.
Murphy was on his first deployment.