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Liberty offers prayers for family of soldier-student killed in action

October 23, 2012 : Liberty University News Service

Liberty University was recently notified by the U.S. Army that Sgt. Robert J. Billings, 30, of Clarksville, Va., died Oct. 13 from wounds suffered during an explosion when enemy forces launched an attack on his unit in Spin Boldak, Afghanistan, where he was serving his country.

Billings was a student with Liberty University Online, where he was pursuing a B.S. in Criminal Justice. He began his studies with Liberty in 2010.

“We were saddened to hear of this tragedy. Sgt. Billings is one of our own and part of our family,” said Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr. “We are praying for his family and will be forever grateful for his courage, dedication, and sacrifice for our great country.”

According to news reports, Billings was only one month away from returning home. He had served in Iraq in 2010 and was deployed a second time to Afghanistan in December 2011.

He is survived by his wife, Christy, of eight years and their four children: Isaiah (10), Kayle (8), Elijah (5), and Naomi (3).  A private memorial service is planned at their Clarksville home.

Liberty will recognize Sgt. Billings, along with other fallen military students, at a Candlelight Tribute Service for Fallen Heroes during its annual Military Emphasis Week at 7 p.m. Nov. 5 on the front steps of Arthur S. DeMoss Learning Center.