Shock and sadness in Windsor, Colo. over the death of a local soldier in Afghanistan

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WINDOSR, Colo. -- Family and friends of Sgt. Christopher Birdwell are in mourning after the pentagon confirmed the soldier's death on Tuesday.

The Department of Defense reported Sgt. Birdwell's death as the result of a firefight between insurgents in the remote area of Kalagush, Afghanistan.

"It's a very surreal thing to lose your best friend and to think he's supposed to come home in a few months...its very surreal," said Nicole Riediger of Windsor.

The 25-year-old was in the middle of serving his third tour of duty in the U.S. Army's Fourth Infantry Division, based out of Fort Carson.

"He was an amazing, amazing person," added another friend.

Army officials reported Birdwell's death along with Spc. Mabry Anders, a 21-year-old from Baker City, Oregon.