Yesterday afternoon, a young soldier lost his life outside of an Arkansas military recruiting station while taking part in the Army's Hometown Recruiting Assistance program. A fellow soldier was shot and injured on the scene. Military Times published an Associated Press report on the incident.
Further details surfaced over the motive behind the shootings. The gunman told police after his arrest that the shooting was political. The gunman was a recent Muslim convert who was upset over the U.S. military's mission. He saw the two young men in uniform and decided to open fire. Police say it was an isolated incident by one malcontent who took his skewed personal beliefs too far.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the two young soldiers, William Long and Quinton Ezeagwula, who only recently chose to serve their country.
This unconscionable act against unarmed troops should never happen on American soil. These brave young men simply sought some time at home to demonstrate to their peers their pride in serving as soldiers in the U.S. Army. They were not trained recruiters; simply everyday soldiers who made a noble choice to protect our nation.
To the Long family, our sincerest condolences. Though William never saw combat overseas, he gave his life in service to this country, protecting all that we cherish.