London, Jan 3 : With 255 confirmed kills, Chris Kyle is the deadliest sniper in US military history, a media report said Tuesday.

Kyle hesitated the first time he killed a person at long range with a rifle in an Iraqi town. It was a woman who was about to attack a group of US Marines with a grenade.

But after four deployments to Iraq, he learned to stop hesitating and start shooting straight, Daily Mail reported.

During the Second Battle of Fallujah alone, when US Marines fought running battles in the streets with several thousand insurgents, he killed 40 people.

Despite the incredible number, Kyle is still far from being the deadliest marksman in the world. That distinction goes to Simo Häyhä, a Finnish soldier who killed 542 Soviet soldiers during World War II, the Mail said.

Kyle is a cowboy from Odessa, Texas, who was a professional bronco rodeo rider before he joined the Navy.

For his deadly track record as a marksman during his deployment to Ramadi, the insurgents named him "Al-Shaitan Ramad" -- the Devil of Rahmadi -- and put a $20,000 bounty on his head.

His Navy SEAL companions called him "the Legend."

Kyle, who retired from the Navy after 10 years of service in 2009, told his remarkable story as a deadly marksman in his new book, "American Sniper", which hit the shelves Tuesday.

He received three Silver Stars and five Bronze Stars with Valor, according to his book publisher, Harper Collins.


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