BAY CITY, Mich. — A 31-year-old Green Beret from Bay City who served two tours of duty in Iraq has been killed fighting in Afghanistan, according to the Pentagon.
Sgt. 1st Class Michael A. Cathcart died of wounds received from small arms fire during dismounted combat operations in Kunduz Province on Friday, the Defense Department said.
Cathcart was a Bay City Central High School graduate and enlisted in the Army in 2001, The Bay City Times reported.
Cathcart was part of the 3rd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
His battalion commander, Lt. Col. Michael Sullivan, said in an email that the unit known as the "Bushmen" had "lost one of our nation's finest." Cathcart "died a true warrior with his fellow teammates at his side," Sullivan wrote.
"The Bushmen will always remember Mike's love for the hockey rink and his contagious smile," said Sullivan. "My thoughts and prayers are with the family of Mike in the coming days, weeks, and months ahead."
Cathcart served in Iraq in 2003 and 2005 and volunteered for Special Forces in 2007, according to a statement from Fort Bragg. He joined the 3rd Special Forces Group in 2009 as an engineer.
His many awards include three Bronze Star Medals, the Purple Heart Medal and four Army Commendation Medals, the statement said.
Cathcart's body was being transported from Germany to Dover, Delaware, Air Force Base, to be met by his mother, Jeanne Cathcart, and his sister, Trishia. A memorial service likely will take place at Fort Bragg, with a service in Bay City to follow, his mother told the newspaper. Arrangements had not yet been completed Sunday.
Cathcart came from a military heritage, his family said. His uncle, Steven Cathcart, served in the Army during the first Gulf War, and his grandfather, Mike Cathcart, served in the Army in the 1950s and 1960s.