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May 19, 2013

Derry soldier, 23, dies in NC

Paratrooper's death under investigation

FORT BRAGG, N.C. — The Army is investigating the death of a 23-year-old paratrooper.

Officials say 1st Lt. Paul DeMeo of Derry, N.H., died Tuesday at Womack Army Medical Center at Fort Bragg.

Army officials are investigating the circumstances of his death, and aren’t releasing any additional information.

DeMeo was a platoon leader assigned to Company B, 2nd Battalion, 505th Parachute Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division.

His commander, Lt. Col. J.C. White, called DeMeo was a “charismatic” leader who “cared deeply” for his fellow soldiers and left a lasting impression on them.

His awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Air Assault Badge, the Parachutist Badge and the Ranger Tab.

A 2007 graduate of Pinkerton Academy, DeMeo participated in the school’s Junior Air Force JROTC program for four years, commanding the cadet corps as a senior.

DeMeo was the first person from the school’s program to attend a U.S. military academy, in this case West Point, where he graduated in 2011. His brothers, twins Pascal and Nathen DeMeo followed in his footsteps at Pinkerton, joining the JROTC and attending Annapolis and West Point.

While a student at Pinkerton Academy, DeMeo met with then-U.S. Senator John Sununu, R-N.H., on the steps of the U. S. Capitol and participated in the National Young Leaders Conference program during his visit to Washington, D.C.

Family members who opened the door at the DeMeo home in Derry last night declined to comment to a reporter and requested privacy.

DeMeo was born in Kawajalein, Marshall Islands on October 1, 1989, the son of Paul and M. Lucienne (Michel) DeMeo. Besides his parents, he leaves twin brothers, Nathen A. DeMeo, and Pascal J. DeMeo, both of Derry; a sister, Danya Aleesa DeMeo of Derry; his girlfriend, Hannah Farmer of Charlotte, N.C.; his paternal grandfather, Paul J. DeMeo of Newton, Mass.; and his maternal grandmother, Amonia Valbrun of Derry.

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