Houston soldier dies of Iraq injuries

Associated Press

HOUSTON — A 25-year-old soldier from Houston has died from shrapnel wounds a month after he was injured during a patrol in Iraq.

Lt. Andrew R. Houghton died at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., on Monday, the Houston Chronicle reported. At least 80 Texas service members have died in fighting in Iraq.

Houghton graduated from Strake Jesuit Preparatory School in Houston and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point before he was deployed to Iraq.

Houghton’s parents and newly commissioned brother, Matt Houghton, were at his side.

The family shared details of Houghton’s struggle for his life since the July 10 attack in an account on the Internet.

“While Andy was not active during the day, he did eat ice chips, squeeze hands and mouth the word ‘Dad,”’ reads a July 27 entry.

Houghton was the 13th West Point graduate to die and the 18th person from the Houston area.

He was on early-morning patrol near Samarra when the Bradley Fighting vehicle he was in came under rocket-propelled grenade fire, according to his family.

Houghton, who commanded a platoon in the 1st Infantry Division, suffered major head wounds from the shrapnel.

“He had this smile that just exploded whenever you saw him,” Strake Jesuit Principal Richard Nevle said. “Andy was a person who liked to help out and who had an adventuresome spirit. He loved this country.”