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Monday, December 27th, 2004 -- 8:48 AM

The war in Iraq is hitting too close to home this morning as a National Guardsmen from Loyal has been killed in Iraq.

Staff Sgt. [b]Todd Olson[/b], 36, was a member of the Neillsville-based detachment of the 128th light infantry. He was killed by a roadside bomb in the town of Samarra ? 60-miles north of Baghdad.

WCCN News talked with Todd?s wife Nancy Monday morning. Nancy said Todd was injured by what the military calls an ?Improvised Explosive Device? while doing a patrol by foot.

[quote]"His legs and his arm were hurt. They airlifted him from there to a hospital," Nancy said, "They had told us he was injured and later they came back and told us that he didn't make it."[/quote]

The Olson?s shared their last phone conversation on Christmas Day.

"He was actually in good spirits. I was surprised because he told me he had only had a couple hours of sleep."

Nancy says the family is relying on their faith and family to get through this.

"Our family is very dependent on God. A lot of prayers. We have a lot of family support. That's just the way we're going to make it through."

There will be a public Memorial Service at the Loyal High School, but the details have yet to worked out. We?ll give you more information when we get them.

Feel free to contact us with questions and/or comments.