Soldier Deaths

Courtesy of Crystal Dunbar

Long before Jonathan Dunbar was a father and a soldier, he was a little brother.

"He was the biggest nerd ever," Crystal Dunbar said. "He had big, Coke-bottle glasses, and he was always playing the superhero. So, whether he was playing cops and robbers, or cowboys and Indians, or anything like that, he was always the superhero."

Department of Defense

On Saturday, the Pentagon identified an Army soldier killed in Syria this week as Master Sgt. Jonathan J. Dunbar, 36, from Austin.

Dunbar was killed on March 30 when a roadside bomb blew up near his patrol vehicle in Manbij, Syria.

He was born in Minnesota, but graduated in 1999 from John B. Connally High School in Austin.

Dunbar had deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan six times since he joined the Army in 2005.

U.S. Department of Defense

Election Day Arrives

The polls are open this morning for the Primary Runoff Election.

Voters will choose party candidates in the U.S. Senate race. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and former Solicitor General Ted Cruz have been in a bitter struggle to be the Republican nominee. Former state Representative Paul Sadler and Grady Yarbrough, a retired educator, are in a runoff for the Democratic nomination.

Across the state, several U.S. congressional district seats, one state senate seat, several state representative seats and a spot on the Texas Supreme Court are also in the mix.

U.S. Department of Defense

A funeral for an Austin soldier slain in Afghanistan is heading to Killeen this afternoon.

Starting at 1 p.m., officers are escorting Sergeant Juan Navarro’s body from Austin to Killeen for burial. The funeral procession starts in North Austin and will head south on Lamar to Koenig Lane. It will then head to I-35 before exiting to 195 toward Kileen.

Sergeant Navarro was killed in an attack on July 7 in Kandahar, Afghanistan. He enlisted in the Army in 2008, serving in both Iraq and Afghanistan. He was 23. 

Joy Diaz, KUT News.

The small home on Rundberg Lane where Juan Pantoja Navarro grew up smells of flowers. Red roses, purple azaleas and yellow daisies are piled on the floor of the front room alongside some candles and a Bible. On the wall above, a collage of pictures highlights cherished moments in the life of this 23 year-old soldier.

Sgt. Navarro was killed by an explosive device July 7 in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

Family and well-wishers crowd the tiny room as a near-constant stream of well-wishers flows into the house. Sgt. Navarro was the second youngest of 11 children. His parents immigrated to Austin from Mexico. He was one of just three in the family born in the U.S.

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