Choctawhatchee High School Alumnus Dies in Combat

OKALOOSA COUNTY-- Friends and former classmates are remembering an Okaloosa County man who was killed this week in Afghanistan.

Sgt. 1st Class Samuel C. Hairston died Tuesday in Ghazni, Afghanistan.

He was shot and killed by small-arms fire when the enemy attacked his unit.

Hairston grew up in Shalimar, and attended Choctawhatchee High School, where he was a stand-out football player.

He graduated in 1997 and enrolled in the University of Houston, where he played football for the Cougars for four years.

Hairston graduated college in 2000, and enlisted in the army in 2003.

He was assigned to Ft. Bragg, North Carolina at the time of his death.

We'll pass along funeral arrangements as soon as they're available.