(Schuylkill Haven) -- Flags are flying at half staff this afternoon at Blue Mountain High School in Schuylkill County after one of its graduates was killed fighting in Afghanistan. 29 year old Jason Jones, a native of Orwigsburg, died from wounds inflicted by small arms fire.
"People have nothing but the highest of regard for this young man. His character, his capabilities, and what they had continued to expect from him is nothing but top-notch," says Blue Mountain High School Principal Kevin Berger.
Although Berger never knew him personally, he said he's learned a lot about him from teachers and those in the community since the U.S. Army announced his death.
Jones, a 2003 graduate of Blue Mountain, had deployed to Afghanistan in April, his second deployment overseas, according to the Army.
Berger says the mood has shifted from the joy and relief that usually comes at the end of the school year.
"Very somber, very tragic, very unfortunate. Very bright young man, who left us way too early, had a lot of good things that he could've still provided us both locally and internationally."
Berger says teachers are speaking about how Jones' character distinguished him from other students.
He adds the school plans to etch the Green Beret and West Point graduate's name into the school's fallen vets memorial in a special ceremony.
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