Wheaton Soldier Killed in Afghanistan

Spc. Samuel T. Watts, 20, was injured by an IED last month

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    A soldier from west suburban Wheaton died Saturday, nearly a month after being injured by an improvised explosive device, the Department of Defense said.

    Spc. Samuel T. Watts, 20, was wounded April 25 in Zharay, Afghanistan, according to a Department of Defense release.

    "He just wanted to serve," his guidance counselor, Wendy Biggs, told TribLocal Wheaton. "He was just really proud of our country. He just wanted to help people, and that was the way he felt he could best help."

    Watts was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 508th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division based in Fort Bragg, N.C.

    It was his first deployment to Afghanistan.