By Brandon Bounds
“He was an absolute jewel. He did everything for me.”
That’s just a taste of how Lynn Loftus described her grandson, Louis Loftus.
Louis, 30, died Tuesday because of heart complications, according to his grandmother. Despite living a relatively short life, she said, he made a tremendous impact on the world and those around him.
An Afghanistan War veteran, Sgt. Louis did two tours in the U.S. Army and was strongly affected by his experiences there. His was featured on national television several times talking about his service.
Louis served two combat tours in Afghanistan, serving with the 82nd Airborne and the 173rd Airborne. He was honorably discharged in November 2010.Sgt. Louis Loftus Point Man breaks down talking about the lives lost.
In 2010, he gave an emotional interview with NBC Nightly News about losing a friend in combat.
“I’m kind of numb to it,” Louis said of his friend’s death in the television report. “I don’t really feel much. I pray for his family. I pray for his soul.”
Tears flowed as he began to break down emotionally.
“I try not to think about it. Because when you think about it, then I get like this,” he added, choking on his words.
NBC News documented his struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder in a special that aired in 2012 after a reporter followed Louis for two years.
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Sgt. Loftus: Dealing with life during and after war
October 04, 2012
Two years ago, Chief Foreign Correspondent Richard Engel met Sgt. Louis Loftus on a battlefield in Afghanistan. Since then, Loftus has allowed NBC News to document his life as a soldier and a citizen. Loftus is one of 100,000 returning veterans that is being treated for PTSD. NBC’s Richard Engel reports.