Columbus soldier killed in Afghanistan has ties to Brown County

The mother of the 2011 graduate of Columbus East High School killed in Afghanistan lives in Brown County.

U.S. Army Sgt. Jonathon Michael Hunter, 23, the son of Mark Hunter of Columbus and Kimberly and Brian Thompson of Brown County, died as a result of a suicide car bomb while providing security during his first deployment, his mother said.

News of her son’s death was delivered by members of the Indiana National Guard on Wednesday night, she said.

Hunter joined the Army on April 8, 2014. He was serving with the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborn Division in Ft. Bragg, North Carolina. He earned his Expert Infantryman Badge late last year, and more recently had been promoted to sergeant, Kimberly Thompson said.

Hunter married Whitney Michelle Hunter on Oct. 15, 2016, and was deployed to Afghanistan about a month ago, on July 1.

His mother said she feels numb after learning of her son’s death, but at the same time is proud of his service.

“I’m very, very proud of who he has become and what he did for our country,” Kimberly Thompson said.

More information will be in Wednesday’s Democrat.