(KRON) — Bay Area resident Adrianna Vorderbruggen, an Air Force Major who was a pioneer in the protest against the military’s former “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, was killed Monday in a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan.
Vorderbruggen leaves behind her wife Heather Lamb and son Jacob.
KRON4 sources say Voderbruggen and her family lived in San Rafael. A member of Heather’s family in Santa Rosa told KRON that they are mourning the loss of their beloved war hero.
“We are a large family and we are trying to do the best we can right now,” he said.
Heather and the couple’s son are en route to Dover Air Force Base for a solemn ceremony honoring Vorderbruggen.
Vorderbruggen, 36, of Plymouth, Minnesota, was assigned to the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, 9th Field Investigations Squadron, Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.
Vorderbruggen and 5 other U.S. soldiers were killed after a suicide bomber rammed a motorcycle packed with explosives into a joint NATO-Afghan patrol. Monday’s Taliban attack was the deadliest assault on international forces since August.
Vorderbruggen was one of the first openly gay service members to marry after “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was ended in 2011. The group Military Partners and Families Coalition confirmed her death on its Facebook page.
“Major Vorderbruggen leaves behind her wife, Heather, and son, Jacob,” the group said. “We do find comfort in knowing that Heather and Jacob are no longer in the shadows and will be extended the rights and protections due any American military family as they move through this incredibly difficult period in their lives.”
When their marriage was finally legally recognized, they celebrated by signing up Heather and Jacob as Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) dependents, taking a shopping trip to the commissary with the dependent ID card, and scheduling their first doctor’s appointment on base for Jacob.
The attack remains under investigation, said U.S. Col. Michael Lawhorn, a spokesman for NATO’s Operation Resolute Support.
Compiled from wire reports.