Colorado Army National Guard Liam Nevins killed in Afghanistan

GARDEZ, Afghanistan - A Colorado Army National Guard soldier training Afghan soldiers in Paktia Province was shot and killed Saturday.

Staff Sgt. Liam J. Nevins, of Denver, was at Forward Operating Base Shank in Afghanistan.

Nevins was conducting range training when enemy forces attacked his unit with small arms fire, according to the United State Army Public Affairs Office.

The New York Times reported that a source told them the attack happened inside the base and the attacker was an Afghan National Army soldier. The newspaper said if that is confirmed, it would be the seventh insider attack this year.

Three American soldiers died -- Nevins, Staff Sgt. Timothy R. McGill, of Ramsey, N.J., and Spc. Joshua J. Strickland, of Woodstock, Ga.

Nevins enlisted in the Army during High School in Vermont. He deployed three times to Iraq and Afghanistan in 2003, 2004 and 2005.

After leaving active service, Nevins attended Metropolitan State College in Denver. After three years, he joined the Colorado Army National Guard.

Over the years, Nevins earned many commendations including a Purple Heart with Bronze Oak Leaf Cluster.

Nevins is survived by his mother, his father, two sisters, and his fiancé.

"We are eternally indebted to Staff Sgt. Liam Nevins for his service and commitment to our country and to the Colorado Army National Guard," Gov. John Hickenlooper said in a written statement. "His life was cut short, along with two of his fellow soldiers, during his fourth deployment in the defense of our nation. He was a true American hero. Sgt. Nevins' family and friends are in our thoughts and prayers as we join the nation in mourning his death."