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Iowa Soldier Killed in Afghanistan Helicopter Crash

ESTHERVILLE, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa soldier who died in a helicopter crash in Afghanistan last week is being remembered for his love of flying.

The U.S. Defense Department said 27-year-old Staff Sgt. Steven Blass, of Etherville, Iowa, was one of five soldiers killed in the March 11 crash. The cause of the crash remains under investigation.

Blass was a helicopter crew chief who joined the 3rd Combat Aviation Brigade last August. He had been in the Army since 2006 and was on his second combat deployment.

One of Blass' childhood friends, Brandon Johnson told the Des Moines Register that Blass loved flying Black Hawk helicopters.

Blass was married and had a young son. Funeral plans were still pending Sunday.

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