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CHICAGO (AP) -- The father of a young U.S. diplomat killed in southern Afghanistan says his daughter always had a passion for foreign affairs and was preparing to learn Arabic for an assignment in Algeria.
Anne Smedinghoff, a 25-year-old foreign service officer from suburban Chicago, died Saturday when the group she was traveling with was struck by an explosion. They were en route to donate textbooks to students.
She is the first American diplomat to die on the job since last year's attack on the U.S. diplomatic installation in Benghazi, Libya.
Her father, Tom Smedinghoff, told The Associated Press he takes consolation in knowing she died doing what she loved and was making a difference.
She was a graduate of Johns Hopkins University and joined the foreign service right out of school.