Sgt. Alessandro Leonard Plutino, 28, was killed by enemy forces during a heavy firefight while conducting combat operations in Paktiya Province, Afghanistan.
Plutino was a Team Leader assigned to B Company, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at Hunter Army Airfield, Ga. He was on his sixth deployment in support of the War on Terror with three previous deployments to Iraq and two to Afghanistan.
He was born Aug. 23, 1982 in Washington Township, N.J. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in August 2006 from his hometown of Pitman, N.J. Plutino completed One Station Unit Training at Fort Benning, Ga., as an infantryman. After graduating from the Basic Airborne Course there, he was assigned to the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program also at Fort Benning.
Plutino graduated from the Ranger Assessment and Selection Program and was then assigned to B Co., 1st Bn., 75th Ranger Reg. in February 2007, where he served as a rifleman, grenadier, automatic rifleman, and a Ranger team leader.
His military education includes the Basic Airborne Course, Ranger Assessment and Selection Program, U.S. Army Ranger Course, Warrior Leader Course, and the Emergency Medical Technician Ambulatory Course.
His awards and decorations include the Ranger Tab, the Expert Infantryman's Badge, Combat Infantryman's Badge and the Parachutist Badge.
He has been awarded three Army Commendation Medals, Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, three Afghanistan Campaign medals, two Iraq Campaign Medals, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon, Army Service Ribbon and three Overseas Service Ribbon.
He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal and the Purple Heart.
Plutino is survived by his mother Dianna Hammond and his father Sandro Plutino, both of Pitman, N.J.
As a Ranger, Plutino selflessly lived his life for others and distinguished himself as a member of the Army's premier direct action raid force, continuously deployed in support of the Global War on Terror, and fought valiantly as he served his fellow Rangers and our great Nation.