A New Call for Investigating Suspected Soldier Suicides in Alaska

Three soldiers assigned to Fort Wainwright, Alaska, have died so far this year. One was found dead in his off-post home, another in his company arms room, and another died of his injuries a week after being found in his on-post home. . .

Alaska Republican Rep. Don Young has asked, in a letter to Army surgeon general Lt. Gen. Nadja West, to send a team to Wainwright to investigate deaths of soldiers.

“As the number of military suicides continues to climb in Alaska, it is clear that the battle is far from over,” he wrote in the letter dated Tuesday. “Therefore, I request that you send [an Army Medical Command] team to Fort Wainwright to examine the situation on the ground and provide us and the installation with solutions for a path forward.” . . .

Deaths at Wainwright this year that have been under investigation and unexplained include: Sgt. Jorden Williams, a working dog handler found dead in his off-post home in January; Spc. Ashvin Slaughter, whose body was discovered in his company arms room later that month; and Sgt. Brian Sawyer, who was discovered in his on-post home and transferred to Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, before dying of his injuries.

Additionally, in September 2018, another Fort Wainwright soldier, Pvt. Mason Jeremiah Heimer, was found dead in his truck at a nearby campground parking lot, a week after he had gone missing. The following month, a Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson soldier, Sgt. Andrew Washington was found dead in his Anchorage home. (Read more from “A New Call for Investigating Suspected Soldier Suicides in Alaska” HERE)

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