The Department of Defense says Sgt. Maj. James G. Sartor was from Teague, Texas, which is about an hour outside of Waco.
According to authorities, he died from injuries from enemy small arms fire in the Faryab Province. The Taliban is claiming responsibility for the attack.
Sartor was 40 years old. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group out of Fort Carson.
He joined the Army in June 2001 and was assigned to the 3rd Infantry Division as an infantryman. He completed the Special Forces Qualification Course in 2005.
He deployed to Iraq as an infantryman in 2002, and as a Green Beret, was assigned to the 2nd Battalion in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2010. He also deployed to Afghanistan in 2017 and 2019.
"We're incredibly saddened to learn of Sgt. Maj. James 'Ryan' Sartor's passing in Afghanistan. Ryan was a beloved warrior who epitomized the quiet professional," said commander of 10th Special Forces Group Col. Brian R. Rauen. "He led his soldiers from the front and his presence will be terribly missed."
Sartor had earned several awards and decorations.
- The Bronze Star Medal with three oak leaf clusters
- Defense Meritorious Service Medal
- Joint Service Commendation Medal
- Army Commendation Medal with three oak leaf clusters
- Army Achievement Medal
- Presidential Unit Citation Award
- Joint Meritorious Unit Award
- Valorous Unit Award with two oak leaf clusters
- Meritorious Unit Citation with one oak leaf cluster
- Army Good Conduct Medal with six knots
- National Defense Service Medal
- Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
- Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star
- Iraq Campaign Medal with 4 Campaign Stars
- Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal
- Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
- Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon with numeral 5
- Army Service Ribbon
- Overseas Service Ribbon with numeral 2
- NATO Medal
- Special Forces Tab
- Ranger Tab
- Combat Infantryman Badge
- Senior Parachutist Badge
- Special Operations Diver Badge.
His posthumous awards include the Purple Heart Medal and Bronze Star Medal.