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Former SEAL, ‘American Sniper’ Author Chris Kyle Killed at Gun Range, Possibly by Marine

Chris Kyle sniper

Chris Kyle, a highly decorated Iraq War veteran and one of the most accomplished snipers in American military history, was killed while at a gun range outside Fort Worth, Texas, on Saturday. Reports are now surfacing about the man suspected of shooting him, Eddie Ray Routh, a former Marine and also an Iraq vet, whom Kyle, 38, may have been trying to aid in coping with post-traumatic stress disorder.

Eddie Ray Routh mug shot
Erath County Sheriff’s Office

Craft International, a security-training company Kyle founded, posted a note on its site explaining that Kyle and his friend and associate, Chris Littlefield, 35, were killed ”by a troubled veteran whom they were trying to help.”

Routh (right), 25, is currently in custody for the shooting. He was at the range with Kyle and Littlefield, possibly as part of a therapy technique to aid his PTSD. During shooting practice, he apparently turned his gun on Kyle and shot him at point-blank range, according to investigators.

Routh is being held at the Erath County jail. He was arrested at his house in nearby Tarrant County. Constable Clint Burgess, a friend of Kyle, said that Routh’s mother had asked Kyle to help her son: ”She was worried about her son and asked Chris if he could help him overcome PTSD.”

Kyle’s military record was sterling, and many regarded him as the single best American sniper. He recorded over 150 kills in Iraq, including one from a staggering 2,100 yards (1.2 miles). He served “four tours in Iraq, received 14 different awards and decorations, including two Silver Stars, five Bronze Stars with Valor, and two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals.”

[Dallas Morning News, Empire Tribune, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, NPR]

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