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Death benefits awarded to wife of female Soldier killed in Afghanistan

Staff Sgt. Donna Johnson killed in combat in Afghanistan
Military released photo

The Army announced Friday that Staff Sgt. Donna Johnson’s same-sex-wife, Staff Sgt. Tracy Dice Johnson, will receive full widow/widower benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs. In addition to death benefits, Dice-Johnson will receive monthly benefits of $1,233.23.

Army National Guard Staff Sgt. Donna Johnson lost her life in the fight in Afghanistan on Oct. 1, 2012, along with two of her fellow Soldiers. All three of the military police officers were victims of a suicide bomber.

The benefits will be retroactive to the date of Staff Sgt. Donna Johnson’s death which was before the Supreme Court’s ruling overturning parts of the Defense of Marriage Act.

Dice and Johnson married Feb. 14, 2012, just before Donna’s deployment to Afghanistan. Staff Sgt. Tracy Dice legally changed her last name to Johnson after her wife died.

Staff Sgt. Donna Johnson was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and was assigned to 514th Military Police Company, 60th Troop Command, Winterville, N.C. at the time of her death.

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