Update: Chaplain Goetz Killed in Afghanistan

Updated with message from Army Chief of Chaplains.

As previously noted, US Army Chaplain (Capt) Dale Goetz was killed in Afghanistan earlier this week.  He evidently died fufilling his pastoral duties as a Chaplain, “fob-hopping” to support his “congregation” of military Soldiers:

Goetz was in a convoy traveling from one forward operating base to another, where he counseled soldiers.

MSNBC reports that he was the first Chaplain killed in combat since Vietnam, not unlike the story of Sgt Chris Stout, the Chaplain assistant killed in Afghanistan in July.  Notably, however, US Army Chaplain Tim Vakoc died in 2009, five years after being wounded in a similar set of circumstances: a roadside bomb on a return trip from ministering to troops.

The Army Chief of Chaplains released the following message: 

From: Chief of Chaplains
Sent: Wednesday, September 01, 2010 10:24 AM

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

It is with my deepest sympathy and utmost respect that I announce to our Chaplain Corps that Chaplain (CPT) Dale A. Goetz was killed in action in Afghanistan on August 30, 2010 while serving as the Battalion Chaplain for 1-66th Armor Battalion, 4th Infantry Division. Dale was one of five Soldiers killed by an Improvised Explosive Device while traveling in a convoy near Kandahar Province. Chaplain Goetz is survived by his wife, Christy, and by their three sons- Landon, Caleb and Joel.

Chaplain Goetz is the first military chaplain killed in action in Iraq or Afghanistan. Dale was a selfless servant of God, a devoted husband and father, a strong American patriot, and a compassionate spiritual leader whose love for Soldiers was only surpassed by his firm commitment to living his calling as a United States Army Chaplain.

Please join with me in prayer for Christy, Landon, Caleb and Joel as we mourn with them in the loss of Dale, our fellow Soldier and Unit Ministry Team member. Let us also strive to honor Dale’s sacrifice with a continuing bold commitment to ensure the finest religious support and pastoral care possible for our beloved Soldiers and their Families.

May God bless the Goetz Family and the Families of all our Fallen Soldiers; and, may God bless our Army and the United States of America.


Chaplain (Major General) US Army
Chief of Chaplains

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

Also noted here, at the Military Times, and at the Buddhist Chaplain blog.