Fort Riley says soldier’s drowning “a tragic loss”

FORT RILEY, Kan. (KSNT) – Fort Riley says a 1st Infantry Division Soldier that drowned over the weekend drowned while swimming with his family at Milford Lake is a tragic loss.

Geary County Sheriff Tony Wolf said Spc. Xavier Joseph Harden, 23, a “Dagger” brigade soldier, went under Sunday afternoon when he jumped off a flotation device to help his wife and a 3-year-old child because the wind had blown them away from shore. His wife told authorities that Harden was unable to swim.

“We are supporting and will continue to support Xavier’s family through this difficult time,” Lt. Col. Dave Maxwell.

Harden arrived at Fort Riley in June 2016.  His home of record is Tolleson, Arizona. His awards include the Army Achievement Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal and the Army Service Ribbon.

The incident at Milford Lake remains under investigation.

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