MADISON, N.C. — A local family is in mourning after the loss of a nephew killed during a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan on Wednesday.
Officials with the U.S. Department of Defense said Major Thomas Kennedy was killed after a suicide bomber detonated an improvised explosive vest in Sarkowi, Afghanistan.
Kennedy, 35, grew up in New York, but has family in Madison.
Kennedy’s aunt, Diane Nelson said her nephew graduated from West Point Military Academy in 2000, and received a several awards including the Bronze Star.
“I just wish everybody could have met him and known what a great person he was. I just want everybody to pray for the family,” said Nelson.
Kennedy was based out of Fort Carson, Colo., and served in the Army’s Fourth Brigade Combat Team.
Nelson said this was Kennedy’s first deployment to Afghanistan since joining the Army. He had been there for only two weeks.
“It’s like you want to wake up from a bad dream, but you know you can’t. You know it’s real,” said Nelson.
Kennedy is survived by his wife and two-year-old twins. His body was flown to Dover Air Force Base on Friday. A memorial service will be held next week in New York.