PFC David Jefferson, of Philadelphia, died July 2, 2010 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device; he was 23. The soldier was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky. He earned a National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon, and expert M4 Weapons Qualification. Jefferson was survived by his wife, Darniece, their son, Ian, and his father, James Lyles of Columbia, S.C., a Vietnam veteran.

“David wanted to be just like his dad and that is why he joined the Army,” said CBS Eyewitness News reporter Valerie Levesque.

The Travis Manion Foundation honored PFC David Jefferson, Army through the Character Does Matter program on Nov. 20, 2012 when his story inspired cadets in the JROTC unit at Overbrook High School in Philadelphia, Pa.

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