Portland man killed in Afghanistan suicide attack

Portland man killed in Afghanistan suicide attack »Play Video

PORTLAND, Ore. - A highly decorated soldier was among those killed in last week’s bombing at a CIA base in Afghanistan.

Master Sgt. Dane Paresi, 46, grew up on Mount Scott and spent almost 30 years in the Army before retiring and going to work for the security company Xe which was formerly known as Blackwater.

Paresi was at the CIA base in the Khost Province of Afghanistan when a double agent arrived for a meeting claiming he had new information about a top aide to Osama bin Laden. Paresi’s wife, Mindy Lou, said her husband was suspicious, and when he approached the bomber the explosion went off, killing Paresi and seven others on Dec. 30, 2009. The dead included CIA officers, contractors like Paresi working for the CIA, and a Jordanian intelligence officer.

Paresi graduated from Portland’s Marshall High School in 1982 and began basic training in the Army the next day, his family said.

He was deployed with Special Forces to many war zones that included Afghanistan, Iraq, and Somalia.

His family said Paresi was awarded many medals and awards, including the Bronze Star, the National Defense Service Medal with Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, and awards for service in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Paresi’s brother, Terry of Oregon City, said in a statement that his brother, “never wavered in his commitment to our country, his fellow soldiers and the people he worked with - both military and civilian.

“There was only one thing that Dane loved more than the U.S. Army and that was his family. He was their protector and provider. He died trying to give them the best life he could.”

His wife was quoted in The (Tacoma) News Tribune as saying, “He saved many people. We are devastated; we are broken, but we are also very proud of him.”

In addition to his wife, Paresi leaves behind two daughters.

A memorial service for him will be held Saturday in Vancouver, and he will be buried at Willamette National Cemetery with full military honors.

The cemetery is just a quarter mile from the home where he was raised.