Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that he recently received official notification from the U.S. Army in the Pentagon about the death of Private First Class Timothy Ray Vimoto. According to the U.S. Army, PFC Vimoto died on Tuesday, June 5, 2007, in Korengal Valley, Afghanistan, due to injuries sustained when his dismounted patrol received small arms fire by Anti-Coalition forces. PFC Vimoto was serving in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
PFC Vimoto was 19 years and 10 months of age and served in the U.S. Army (Regular) for seven months at the time of his death. He was assigned to B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade in Caserma Ederle, Italy when deployed to Afghanistan. He became the 13th known soldier of Samoan ancestry killed in the War on Terror and second killed in Afghanistan.
PFC Timothy Vimoto is the son of Command Sergeant Major Isaia “Ace” Vimoto Tauanu’u of Sala’ilua, Samoa and Mrs. Misimua Aiono Vimoto of Pago Pago, American Samoa. He is the grandson of Vimoto Tauanuu of Ta’u, Manu’a and Soosootuliaigamalietoa of Malie, Samoa, and Tuaifaiva Lulualii Aiono of Vaitogi and Lina Gray Williams of Pago Pago, American Samoa. PFC Vimoto is survived by his parents, sisters Sabrina and Ariel and brothers Isaia Jr. and Nephi.
Funeral services for PFC Timothy Vimoto are scheduled for June 16 and 17, 2007 in San Jose, California with burial scheduled for June 18, 2007.
“I am very saddened by the news of another son of Samoa killed in this tragic conflict,” Congressman Faleomavaega said. “PFC Timothy Vimoto died in honor serving his country. He is a true Army soldier, an American hero and a Toa o Samoa.”
“I know that all Samoans join me in extending to Command Sergeant Major Isaia Vimoto and Mrs. Misimua Vimoto and their children, Sabrina, Ariel, Isaia Jr., and Nephi our deepest sympathies on the loss of their loved one,” Congressman Faleomavaega said.
“It is difficult enough to imagine the pain felt by any parent when a child is killed in war, but when your child is killed while under your own command as I am told in the case of Command Sergeant Major Ace Vimoto – that is a different level of mourning that is beyond anyone’s imagination,” Congressman Faleomavaega said.
“The case of PFC Timothy Vimoto and his father, CSM Isaia Vimoto, is exactly similar to the case of PFC Jonathan Falaniko who died in 2003 and his father, Command Sergeant Major Ioakimo Falaniko. Timothy was killed while serving in Afghanistan as a member of the 173rd Airborne Brigade to which his father, Isaia Vimoto was the Command Sergeant Major. Jonathan was killed while serving in Iraq as a member of the Engineers Brigade to which his father, Ioakimo Falaniko, was the Command Sergeant Major.”
“Timothy’s selfless service and sacrifice reflects the same devotion and commitment shown by his fellow soldiers and Samoan warriors who have died before him in defense of our country and our values. I call on our Samoan community everywhere to please continue to keep the Vimoto family in prayers and thoughts. Let us also continue to pray for our troops and especially those Samoans who are in harm’s way fighting terrorism around the world,” Faleomavaega concluded.