Congressman Faleomavaega announced today that he has conferred with the United States Army about the status of Sergeant Anesi M. Tuufuli of American Samoa who was critically wounded recently in Iraq. Sergeant Anesi Tuufuli is a member of Company B, 4th Battalion, 1st Field Artillery at Fort Riley, Kansas. He was deployed to Iraq in February 2005.
“According to information obtained from the U.S. Army, Sergeant Anesi Tuufuli was injured on February 25, 2005 by a roadside explosion of an improvised explosive device (IED) while he was on a dismounted patrol in Iraq,” Congressman Faleomavaega said. “Sergeant Tuufuli was Med-Evaced from Iraq to the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany where he was stabilized and later transferred to the United States. He is being treated for his wounds at the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas.”
“According to Army regulations, up to three family members of the injured service member can be moved to be with the soldier in this type of situation and I am pleased that the U.S. Army was able to extend this courtesy to Segeant Tuufuli’s mother, Mrs. Lolosea Sefilino in American Samoa. However, because of Mrs. Sefilino’s status as a citizen of the Independent State of Samoa, she and the U.S. Army requested my office’s intervention in obtaining a visa waiver for her so she could travel to the United States.”
“While I am pleased that I was able to help, I am very sad about what has happened to SGT Tuufuli. It is heartbreaking to receive news about our soldiers being wounded or killed in war and this is why I have always pledged my support to do everything I can to assist our soldiers and their families in their time of need. In SGT Tuufuli’s case, I am grateful that his mother, Mrs. Lolosea Sefilino, will soon be able to sit by the side of her injured son in San Antonio, Texas.”
“At this time, I extend my best wishes to Sergeant Anesi Tuufuli in his recovery. My prayers are with him and his family during these difficult times. I also extend my greatest faamalo and faafetai tele to the rest of our service members, especially those who are serving in Iraq and in Afghanistan,” Congressman Faleomavaega concluded.