Upstate soldier killed in Afghanistan

07/26/2012 12:00 AM

07/26/2012 12:04 AM

U.S. Army Pfc. Adam Ross, 19, of Lyman was shot and killed in an ambush while on foot patrol Tuesday in Afghanistan, said his uncle, Kevin Nix.

Ross, a member of the 173rd Airborne Infantry, was stationed in Vicenza, Italy, and had been in Afghanistan for less than three weeks when he was killed.

Ross graduated a semester early from James F. Byrnes High School at the end of 2010, Nix said. He enlisted on April 4, 2011, following two role models, his father, Staff Sgt. Dudley Ross, who served 10 years in the U.S. Navy before transferring to the Army National Guard, and his brother, U.S. Army Pfc. Jonathan Ross, 24, who is stationed in South Korea.

Nix said his nephew had always wanted to be a soldier, even as a toddler. His scores on the military entrance exam were high and he could have served in any position, but he opted for the infantry, Nix said.

“He had always desired to go into the military,” Nix said. “He had always had a passion to wear the uniform and fight on the front lines.”

Nix said Adam Ross was very family-oriented, well-liked and laid back.

“Nothing seemed to rattle him,” Nix said. “He spoke to his girlfriend just before he left for Afghanistan, and she asked him if he was aware of what could happen. He said, ‘I know where I’m going, I know what I’m doing and I know what my purpose is.’ His soul was saved. He was confident in where his faith was placed. The whole family is strong in its faith.”

The Rosses are members of Airport Baptist Church in Greer. The pastor, the Rev. Mike Bowling, said he visited the family on Wednesday, as Adam Ross’ parents, Dudley and Amanda Ross, and his girlfriend, Rachel “BB” Lowery, prepared for a flight to Delaware to meet the plane carrying Adam Ross’ body.

“He was well-mannered, good spirited and just an all-around good American boy,” Bowling said.

Funeral arrangements were incomplete Wednesday and will be announced later, Nix said.

Ross is the fourth South Carolinian to die in combat in Afghanistan this year.

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