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Missouri National Guard SFC Robert Pharris of Seymour MO killed in Afghanistan

January 08, 2011|KY3 News
  • SFC Robert Pharris of Seymour, MO
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SEYMOUR, Mo. — Missouri National Guard officials say a soldier from Seymour, Missouri, has died in Afghanistan.

Sergeant First Class Robert Pharris was killed January 5 when he and some fellow soldiers were hit by a roadside bomb.

The 48-year-old was an agriculture specialist and the first casualty for the Missouri National Guard's Agri-Business Development Team.  SFC Pharris helped teach Afghan farmers about growing crops other than poppies.

SFC Pharris was born in Mansfield.  His father was a farmer and Marine who served in Korea and Vietnam.  His grandfather was a farmer and World War II soldier.  His great-grandfather was also a farmer and World War I soldier.

SFC Pharris was featured in a November, Military News article talking about his experience with the Afghan farmers:

"I see a chance here to really make a difference," SFC Pharris said. "It would be interesting to come back here in ten years and see a farmer with his crops, a green valley here again, and to have someone tell them they learned that from an Afghan who was taught by an American. How cool would that be?"

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Since September 11, 2001, the Missouri National Guard has lost 13 soldiers in overseas operations.

SFC Pharris has a memorial page created on Facebook.

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