A Navy SEAL who lived in San Diego was among seven American troops who died in a Black Hawk helicopter crash in southern Afghanistan, a family member said Friday.
Harold Voorhees told The Associated Press that 27-year-old David "Davey" John Warsen's fiancee, Karlyn Deveau, was notified of his death in San Diego, where they lived before his deployment. Voorhees said Karlyn Deveau was traveling to Michigan to make funeral arrangements.
Warsen graduated from East Kentwood High School in Kentwood, Michigan Voorhees said. He described him as an "upbeat" and "wonderful guy" who made sacrifices to serve as a Navy SEAL.
"What he went through to have that designation takes a lot of self-sacrifice," said Voorhees, his great-uncle and a Kent County Commissioner.
MLive.com earlier reported Warsen's death. The Defense Department on Friday morning hadn't confirmed the names of those who died. Four Afghans also were killed.
Family members planned to meet in the Grand Rapids area Friday to learn more about Warsen's death from the military and make arrangements, Voorhees said. On Friday, they recalled how Warsen, who had been in the Navy for nearly four years, took pride in serving his country.
Duke Warsen told MLive.com he spoke with his grandson frequently, maybe twice a week, and often used Skype to communicate, but didn't know much about his mission. He said Warsen was expected to be back in the U.S. by Oct. 1, when his deployment was to end, and had planned to marry Deveau in December.
"He was very tight-lipped," Duke Warsen said. "He didn't want us to worry. But we could hear in his voice, things were pretty bad over there."