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Soldier wounded during search for Bowe Bergdahl dies of his injuries
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Soldier wounded during search for Bowe Bergdahl dies of his injuries
A US soldier shot in the head during the 2009 search for army deserter Bowe Bergdahl has died from his injuries. Army Master Sgt. Mark Allen died on Saturday at the age of 46, 10 years after being injured in the hunt for his missing comrade. He spent 21 years in the army and national guard, and retired in 2013 on receiving the Purple Heart. He had been unable to walk or speak since a sniper shot him in the head in July 2009 while he was looking for Bergdahl, who had walked off his base in Afghanistan and was held by the Taliban for five years.   At Bergdahl's trial, Allen's wife Shannon testified that it would take up to 90 minutes each morning to get her husband out of bed, showered, and dressed. She had to use a pulley system attached to the ceiling to move him. Shannon Allen, who testified during the trial of Bowe Bergdahl Mrs Allen did not learn about the circumstances surrounding her husband’s injuries until 2014, after former president Barack Obama negotiated Bergdahl’s release in a swap for five Taliban members detained at Guantanamo Bay. The Idaho-born soldier, now 33, was sentenced in January 2016 for desertion. During the trial he apologised to those injured. “I would like everyone who searched for me to know it was never my intention for anyone to be hurt, and I never expected that to happen,” he said. He was reduced in rank from sergeant to private, ordered to forfeit $1,000 in pay for 10 months, and given a dishonorable discharge. He did not serve any prison time. Mrs Allen broke the news on Facebook on Sunday. “I’m heartbroken to let you all know that my husband passed away peacefully yesterday morning, with his family by his side,” she said. “Over ten years ago, he sustained a severe head injury while serving in Afghanistan, which caused him lifelong health problems. "These past few months, he has faced some significant illnesses, and his body was finally ready to rest.”
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