The Army soldier who killed his superior officer on Thursday and then shot himself, died from his wounds a day later. The solider in question was identified by officials at Fort Bragg as Specialist Ricky G. Elder, a 27-year-old infantryman from Kansas. Elder shot and killed his battalion commander, Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale (pictured above), during an outdoor meeting on the North Carolina base last week. A third soldier was wounded, but has been released from the hospital.
Elder's murder-suicide may have been prompted by legal troubles that he was facing both on the base and back in his hometown of Hutchinson, Kansas. According to reports, Elder had been accused of stealing a $1,700 toolkit from the base motor pool and was facing a court martial that could have ended with a dishonorable discharge. In November of 2011, he plead guilty to a felony charge of aggravated battery following an incident where he punched a woman in the face at a sports bar, leading to $60,000 in medical bills for the victim. According to The Hutchinson News, Elder's sentencing hearing was scheduled for Friday morning.
Colonel Tisdale was a highly decorated veteran of both the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. He won both a Bronze Star and Purple Heart, and had served in the Army for nearly 20 years. Elder enlisted in 2004 and spent a year in Iraq and another in Afghanistan, ending his last tour in July 2011.