HARRISBURG, PA - Governor Tom Corbett issued the following statement on the death of U.S. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Nicholas Checque, who died of injuries sustained during the weekend rescue of an American doctor in Afghanistan.
Checque, 28, of Monroeville, Allegheny County, died of "combat related injuries,'' according to a Pentagon news release in announcing his identity.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with this young man's family,'' Corbett said. "We sometimes take for granted the danger the men and women of our military face every day as they fight to protect us and our way of life.''
"Petty Officer Checque's extraordinary courage and skill earned him a place on this unique special operations team. In this final act of bravery and sacrifice, he has forever earned our respect, honor and gratitude,'' Corbett said.
The special operations team freed Dr. Dilip Joseph, an American doctor from Colorado, who worked for a non-governmental organization based in Kabul. Joseph was kidnapped earlier this month and the threat of imminent danger led officials to order the rescue mission.
Checque, a decorated 10-year veteran, was assigned to an East Coast-based Navy Special Warfare Command unit in 2004, according to the Special Warfare Command. His awards include the Bronze Star, Joint Service Commendation Medal, Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and two combat action ribbons, among others. He served in the Iraq War as well as Afghanistan.