Dimitri del Castillo had a zest for life, a commitment to excellence, a passion for service and a genius for leading others. That charismatic combination helped the Houston native graduate from the United States Military Academy at West Point and become an Army Ranger. Those traits were also critical in ensuring that all the men in his platoon survived during a 2011 firefight with the Taliban in Afghanistan. Sadly, that battle, which lasted about eight days, took Dimitri’s life as well as seven soldiers in other units and a military dog named Agdar.

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