An American man killed fighting alongside Kurdish forces against ISIS believed it was “God’s will” that he go to Syria, his mother told NBC News.

“I didn’t want him to go but I didn’t have a choice in the matter,” Keith Broomfield’s mother, Donna, tearfully said in a phone interview Wednesday from Westminster, Massachusetts.

A State Department official confirmed to NBC News that Broomfield, 36, was killed in Syria. The official did not provide further details, saying only that the State Department was in touch with his family.

Twitter accounts and Facebook pages linked to Kurdish fighters were first to report his death, calling Broomfield a “martyr” and saying he was killed in the Syrian countryside surrounding Kobani. There was no immediate official confirmation from the secular Kurdish forces fighting ISIS in Syria known known as the YPG.

Idris Nassan, Kurdish co-deputy foreign minister of the Kobani district, also confirmed to NBC News that an American who had joined Kurdish fighters died in a battle with ISIS in his area. It was not immediately clear when Broomfield was killed.

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