Texas National Guard working on Operation Lone Star commits suicide
The suicide this week is the first suspected suicide linked to Operation Lone Star since December 2021 and the fifth suspected suicide since the mission started
October 7, 2022 7:32pm
Updated: October 7, 2022 7:33pm
A member of the Texas National Guard working on Operation Lone Star at the border died by suicide on Tuesday, the latest in a string of suspected suicides during the mission.
The Texas Army National Guard soldier, identified as Demetrio Torres, 20, by the Texas Military Department, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head in Eagle Pass, Texas, at around 8:20 a.m. on Tuesday.
“We are deeply saddened to have lost one of our own today,” Maj. Gen. Thomas Suelzer, the department’s top leader, said in a statement Tuesday. “We extend our deepest condolences to the family.”
Texas Governor Gregg Abbott confirmed the soldier’s death in a statement released by his office.
"Cecilia and I are deeply saddened to hear of the tragic loss of a soldier with the Texas National Guard," said the governor. "Our hearts go out to the family and loved ones of the soldier. Texas Rangers are leading the investigation, as the Texas National Guard and Texas Department of Public Safety coordinate with local law enforcement."
"I ask all Texans to join Cecilia and me in praying for the soldier’s family during this heartbreaking time," Abbott added. "And for any Texan who is in crisis, we urge you to seek help immediately from a family member, loved one, or a mental health service."
Abbott did not specify which mission the guardsman was assigned to. However, the Texas Tribune and the Military Times reported that the soldier was assigned to Operation Lone Star, an initiative Abbott launched in 2021 to secure the border.
The suicide this week is the first suspected suicide linked to Operation Lone Star since December 2021 and the fifth suspected suicide since the mission started, reported the Texas Tribune.
Abbott launched Operation Lone Star in March 2021, after President Joe Biden took office and promised to roll back some of the harsher immigration policies set in place by the Trump Administration.