A member of the U.S. Air Force from New Hampshire died in an accident this week in Kuwait, the Department of Defense announced Wednesday.
Staff Sgt. Ronald J. Ouellette, a 23-year-old airman from Merrimack, died Monday in a non-combat accident involving an all-terrain vehicle on the flight line, where aircraft are parked and serviced, at Ali Al Salem Air Base near the border with Iraq. The incident is under investigation, according to the Department of Defense.
Ouellette was part of the 42nd Aerial Port Squadron, out of Massachusetts' Westover Air Reserve Base. His deployment was part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the United States' and allies' fight against ISIS, officials said.
“Ronald was a valued member of the Patriot Wing and there are no words that can heal the pain his loss brings,” said the commander of the 439th Airlift Wing, Col. Craig C. Peters, in a statement.
New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu said he was saddened to learn of Ouellette's death.
"All of New Hampshire mourns the loss of Staff Sergeant Ouellette, an American Hero, whose service to our country will never be forgotten. Our prayers are with his family," Sununu said in a statement.