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20th Special Forces Group Soldier from Shelby County killed while supporting Operation Enduring freedom

Staff Sergeant Stephen M. New killed in Afghanistan

20th Special Forces Group - Fort Bragg, NCNashville, TN – Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam and Department of Veterans Affairs Commissioner Many-Bears Grinder regretfully announce the loss of Tennessee soldier Sergeant Stephen Michael New of Bartlett. New has been posthumously promoted to Staff Sergeant.

New was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne) out of Jackson, Mississippi but deployed with 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) out of Fort Bragg, North Carolina. New was fatally shot during an attack on his unit in Kabul Province, Afghanistan on July 28th.

Staff Sergeant Stephen M. New
Staff Sergeant Stephen M. New

The 29-year old soldier grew up in Memphis, Tennessee and graduated from Bolton High School in the Arlington community in 2003.  Later that year, New enlisted in the United States Army to serve as a health care specialist.  He served with Headquarters, 75th Ranger Regiment in Fort Benning, Georgia until his enlistment ended in 2005.

New joined the Mississippi National Guard in July 2009, where he was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne), Jackson, Mississippi.

In 2011, New was selected to become a Special Forces Medical Sergeant and completed the Special Forces Qualification Course in 2012.

“The State of Tennessee grieves with the New family and remembers the ultimate sacrifice given by Stephen’s service to our country,” Haslam said.  “There is no way to truly express the sadness or gratitude we feel for the selfless and brave actions of Staff Sergeant New.”

Staff Sergeant Stephen M. New“We pause to remember Staff Sergeant New and the precious family he leaves behind,“ Grinder said.  “Let us never forget or take for granted the sacrifice that Stephen courageously volunteered for us that we would remain free, safe and proud.”

New is survived by his father, William F. New, mother Michelle P. New of Bartlett and sister, Rachel Schelb of Soddy Daisy.

“In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Stephen New’s name to either the Green Beret Foundation at www.greenberetfoundation.org, the Ukrainian Gypsy Orphan Project at Eads Baptist Church at 2960 Jefferson Road, Arlington, TN 38802, 901.867.0561, or missionaries Brandon and Michelle Burch.  Thank you for your support and understanding during this difficult time,” Rachel Schelb said.

Staff Sergeant New’s remains are expected to arrive at Millington Regional Jetport at 8182 Hornet Avenue, Millington at 9:00am (CDT) on Wednesday, August 7th.  Media and public will be staged outside the fence of the Thomas Seale Terminal.  No interviews of family members will be permitted.

Visitation will be held at First Baptist Church, 3755 North Germantown Road in Bartlett from 11:00am-2:00pm (CDT) on Saturday, August 10th. Graveside funeral services will be held after 2:00pm on Saturday, August 10th at the Memphis Funeral Home and Memorial Gardens.  Media will be permitted outside the visitation services at First Baptist Church, but no interviews with family members will be permitted.  The New family requests no media at the cemetery during the burial.

New will posthumously receive the Tennessee Fallen Heroes Medal.

Staff Sergeant New will also posthumously receive the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, Mississippi Medal for Valor and several other service-related awards.


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