August 12th, 2011
07:55 AM ET

The stories of those who lost their lives in Chinook crash

Editor's note: For more details of those who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan please visit our Home & Away interactive feature. You can also click on the names of those who died in the Chinook crash below to leave a message or memorial. You can also click here to learn more about each of those who died and what their family members had to say about them.

[Updated Friday at 7:53 a.m. ET] The U.S. Defense Department released the names of U.S. military personnel killed in Saturday's downing of a helicopter in Afghanistan.

Thirty-eight people were killed in that attack, eight of them Afghan military personnel. It was the single largest loss of life for U.S. troops since the Afghan war began in late 2001.

Of the 30 Americans, 17 were Navy SEALs.  Twenty-two of the dead were U.S. Navy personnel, the Pentagon said.  Fifteen were SEALs belonging to the top-secret unit that conducted the raid that killed al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden at a compound in Pakistan.  Two others were SEALs assigned to a regular naval special operations unit.

Five were so-called conventional forces with particular specialties who regularly worked with the SEALs. The other eight U.S. troops killed were three Air Force forward air controllers and five Army helicopter crew members.

NATO said it killed the militants responsible for the attack.  Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid rejected that, saying a NATO airstrike killed a separate group of insurgents.

The following list was provided by the Defense Department:

The following sailors assigned to an East Coast-based Naval Special Warfare unit were killed:

Lt. Cmdr. (SEAL) Jonas B. Kelsall, 32, of Shreveport, La.

The Shreveport native was in charge of Saturday’s mission in Wardak province near Kabul. His father, John Kelsall, who heads Lakewood, California’s, Chamber of Commerce, told CNN affiliate KTLA in a statement, “The country will never understand the level of service those guys gave us.” KABC reported that Kelsall, 33, was trained in San Diego, and he met his wife of three years while attending the University of Texas.

Special Warfare Operator Master Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Louis J. Langlais, 44, of Santa Barbara, Calif.

Langlais enlisted in the Navy in June 1986 and began training to be a part of the SEAL team three years later. After joining the Navy Parachute team for three years, he moved on to serve in several East Coast-based SEAL teams for 10 years, according to the Navy.

During his service, Langlais received four Bronze Stars with distinction for valor, two Joint Service Commendation Medals, medals for his work in the war on terror and for his marksmanship, among many other medals and ribbons.

Special Warfare Operator Senior Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Thomas A. Ratzlaff, 34, of Green Forest, Ark.

The 34-year-old Green Forest, Arkansas, native had a motto, according to CNN affiliate KYTV: “There’s two ways to do things: Do them right or do them again.”

Ratzlaff enlisted in 1995 and served in two Special Warfare Units during his time, according to the Navy. During that time, he received several awards, including the Bronze Star Medal with Combat for valor. Ratzlaff leaves behind two sons – 6 and 11 years old – and a wife who is expecting the couple’s third child in November. KYTV spoke to his high school teachers. He played middle linebacker for the football team. Science teacher Bruce Culver joked that he was the best at dissecting frogs, and his friend Kevin Disheroon told the station that Ratzlaff always wanted to be a SEAL. He went to boot camp just weeks after his 1995 graduation from high school.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician Senior Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Kraig M. Vickers, 36, of Kokomo, Hawaii

More than 200 surfers paddled off Sandbridge – one of Vickers’ favorite spots for stand-up paddling – and locked hands in honor of the 36-year-old Navy SEAL who rode the waves of Virginia Beach, The Virginian-Pilot reported.

Vickers was stationed in Virginia Beach and lived there with his pregnant wife and three children - 4, 7 and 18 years old. Back in his hometown of Maui, Hawaii, friends and family also fondly remembered the brawny former high school wrestler and football player. Mary Jane Vickers told CNN affiliate KITV that her son was a good Christian and family man, not to mention a “devoted father, son and serviceman.” Following Tuesday’s “paddle out” in Virginia Beach, those attending whooped, splashed and cast hundreds of flowers into the ocean.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Brian R. Bill, 31, of Stamford, Conn.

The Stamford, Connecticut, native was a man of ambition. The chief petty officer and SEAL was a mountaineer who wanted to complete the seven summits – the highest peak on each continent – and he wanted to one day be an astronaut, CNN affiliate WFSB reported. He also was a skier, a pilot and a triathlete, his stepfather, Michael Parry, said, further describing Bill as thoughtful, compassionate and “remarkably gifted.” A graduate of Norwich University in Vermont, Bill played tennis, soccer and hockey in high school, and coaches said there was a quiet toughness about him.

"We're mourning, if anything else, his unfulfilled dreams,” Parry said during a news conference.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) John W. Faas, 31, of Minneapolis, Minn.

Faas enlisted in the Navy in 1999 and became a SEAL in 2001.

Among many awards, he earned three Bronze Stars with valor distinctions and a National Defense Service medal, according to the Navy.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Kevin A. Houston, 35, of West Hyannisport, Mass.

The Cape Cod native lived in Chesapeake, Virginia, with his wife and three children, according to CNN affiliate WVEC. In 1994, he graduated from high school (where he captained his football team) in a wheelchair after having a nasty motorcycle accident. He became a SEAL a few years later.

“He was born to do this job." his mother told the station. "He’d do it all over again.”

Just weeks ago, according to CNN affiliate WTKR, Houston gave an American flag - which he’d worn under his armor during his last three Afghanistan tours – to veteran Chris Kelly, a man who inspired him. Kelly told the station he was too heartbroken to be interviewed.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Matthew D. Mason, 37, of Kansas City, Mo.

The Navy SEAL's former high school peer Eric Marshall, now the vice principal of their Kearny, Missouri, alma mater, said he remembers Mason as “a tough kid.”

“It didn't surprise anybody that he was able to have that type of success, and achieve Navy SEAL status," Marshall told CNN affiliate KSHB-TV.

John Ball, one of Mason’s former teachers and football coaches, told KSHB-TV that someone approached him asking if he remembered Mason, who graduated in 1992 before moving on to Northwest Missouri State University, where he played baseball. Ball said he immediately remembered his former student and his occupation. “I looked at him and said ‘Don’t tell me, don’t tell me, don’t tell me,’ ” Ball told KSHB-TV. Mason lived in Virginia Beach, Virginia, with his two sons and his wife, who is expecting a third child in November, KSHB-TV reported.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Stephen M. Mills, 35, of Fort Worth, Texas

The father of three children – 1, 13 and 18 years old - had a tremendous sense of humor, friends and family told CNN affiliate WTKR, and the 14-year Navy veteran loved being a SEAL. A sister of the 36-year-old chief petty officer told CNN affiliate KVUE that he never bragged about being a SEAL, despite a decade in the elite force.

“He loved his teammates as brothers. He'll always be remembered as a loving person,” Ashley Mills told the station.

His cousin, J.B. Abbott, told KVUE that the central Texas native was “very proud and very brave.”

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist/Diver) Nicholas H. Null, 30, of Washington, W.Va.

Null, 30, enlisted in the navy in 2000 and had been a SEAL since 2009, according to a bio from the United States Navy.

Originally from West Virginia, Null's many ribbons, medals and awards included two Bronze Stars, two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation medals, and three Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medals.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Robert J. Reeves, 32, of Shreveport, La.

The 32-year-old chief petty officer grew up in Shreveport, Louisiana, with Lt. Cmdr. Jonas Kelsall, who was in charge of the Afghanistan mission that ended with Saturday’s helicopter crash. They went to school, played soccer and became Navy SEALs together. On a Facebook page set up in Reeves’ memory, one poster said, “You could always make the boys laugh, dude.”

Another described him as “sweet, funny and kind-hearted … More than anything, though, Rob was most passionate about the Navy and his role as a SEAL.”

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Heath M. Robinson, 34, of Detroit, Mich.

Robinson enlisted in the Navy in 1996 and completed SEAL training in Coronado, California, in 2000. He moved from the West Coast in 2004 to serve on four East Coast special warfare units, according to the Navy.

Robinson earned four Bronze Stars, three of which had special distinctions for valor, in addition to many other medals and awards.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Darrik C. Benson, 28, of Angwin, Calif.

He was born and raised in Angwin, a small town in Napa County, California, so it was natural that people wanted to know about his SEAL training. Those who knew him, however, say he was low-key and not one to talk about himself, CNN affiliate KGO-TV reported. He went to a private high school, where he was a good student and athlete.

Benson joined the Navy in September 2001, and he became a SEAL in 2003, according to the Navy. Benson has earned a Bronze Star and a Presidential Unit Citation, as well as many other medals, awards and ribbons.

His grandfather, Carlyle Benson, told affiliate KTVU that he recently earned his commercial pilot’s license and wanted to be a pilot after he left the military. Darrik Benson served in the Navy for 12 years, and Carlyle Benson said he was “a fine boy” and “one of the top men in his group.” He met his wife, Kara, in San Diego, and she moved to Virginia with their 3-year-old son to be closer to him.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL/Parachutist) Christopher G. Campbell, 36, of Jacksonville, N.C.

The Navy SEAL, 36, from Jacksonville, North Carolina, told his family that if he were killed in the line of duty, he would want a donation made to the Wounded Warrior Project, according to CNN affiliate WNCT. His high school friend, Joe Baile, told CNN affiliate WCTI that years would go by between their visits, but “then we'd be at somebody's house and they'd stop by when everyone was home for Christmas or something like that and play basketball together.”

Joe’s dad, Jack, coached Campbell’s high school football team. He recalled that Campbell was small for football when he joined the team his junior year, but “he didn’t have a whole lot of fear of anything.”

Information Systems Technician Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Jared W. Day, 28, of Taylorsville, Utah

Day enlisted in 2002, according to his Navy bio. He served at the Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station Atlantic Detachment in Keflavik, Iceland, until July 2004, then began SEAL training.

He had been part of the East Coast SEAL team since 2007. He earned a Joint Combat Commendation Medal with a distinction for valor, an Army Commendation Medal, a Joint Service Achievement Medal, and several other medals, ribbons and awards.

Master-at-Arms Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) John Douangdara, 26, of South Sioux City, Neb.

Douangara, a native of Sioux City, Nebraska, enlisted in the Navy in 2003 and joined his East Coast SEAL team in 2008.

He earned a Bronze Star with a distinction for valor, a Presidential Unit Citation and many other awards.

Cryptologist Technician (Collection) Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) Michael J. Strange, 25, of Philadelphia, Pa.

Charles Strange told CNN affiliate WPVI that three SEALs delivered news of his son’s death to his Mayfair, Pennsylvania, home Saturday. Michael Strange, a 25-year-old petty officer, was on his third tour in Afghanistan, and his brother said Michael – a member of SEAL Team 6 - always wanted to be in the military. Sources told the station that in addition to his parents and two siblings, Michael Strange also left behind a fiancée. He had just purchased a home in Virginia.

"Michael loved this country, he loved Philadelphia, he loved North Catholic [High School, where he graduated], he loved Mayfair, he loved his friends." his father said.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL/Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist) Jon T. Tumilson, 35, of Rockford, Iowa

The town of Rockford, Iowa, is proud to call Tumilson one of its sons. The 35-year-old Navy SEAL graduated from high school in 1995, but neighbors recall his holiday visits as he was often seen jogging through town, CNN affiliate KCCI reported. Tom Dow, who has known Tumilson’s family for years, told another affiliate, KIMT, that Tumilson was “young, full of life, good-looking kid, big and strong, real nice boy.”  Neighbor Leann Ginther said he was a hero.

“Just the fact that he sacrificed his life for all of us back here … I guess that’s what freedom is, is them doing that for us, but way too young of a guy to be losing his life,” she said.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Aaron C. Vaughn, 30, of Stuart, Fla.

Kimberly Vaughn met Aaron Vaughn in Guam when she traveled there with the Washington Redskins cheerleaders to entertain the troops. She said she last spoke with her husband the day before the fatal crash and, Kimberly Vaughan said, “We got to tell each other we loved each other, so it was a great conversation to have.” Kimberly Vaughn said she still plans to build their home in Virginia Beach, where she will raise their two children. His wife described her husband as a “warrior for Christ, and he was a warrior for our country, and he wouldn’t want to leave this Earth any other way than how he did.”

"Even if you could tell him that this would have happened, he would have done it anyway," she said.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Jason R. Workman, 32, of Blanding, Utah

The Navy SEAL was one of four brothers, the oldest a West Point graduate, according to CNN affiliate KTVX. Workman grew up in Blanding, Utah, and gained a reputation as a compassionate guy who worked hard and loved sports. Family friend Rick Eldredge said of the 32-year-old petty officer first class, “He would do anything to help the guy across the table from him. … He was just willing to do anything for anybody, and he's proven by giving his life to this country," affiliate KSL-TV reported.

Late last year, Workman, who has served in the Navy for eight years, returned home to train police officers, the station reported. He was planning to do so again in December. His family released a statement saying he loved his job and was “the best of the best.” He left behind a 21-month-old son.

The following sailors assigned to a West Coast-based Naval Special Warfare unit were killed:

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Jesse D. Pittman, 27, of Ukiah, Calif.

Pittman enlisted in the Navy in March 2005 and completed SEAL training in March 2006, according to the Navy.

Pittman reported to the the Naval Special Warfare Training Center Detachment in Kodiak, Alaska. He returned to the West Coast SEAL team in 2007.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 2nd Class (SEAL) Nicholas P. Spehar, 24, of Saint Paul, Minn.

Spehar enlisted in the Navy in 2007.

He became a SEAL in 2008 and was a member of the West Coast SEAL team, according to the Navy. Among his many awards, Spehar earned an Army Commendation Medal and two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals.

The soldiers killed were:

Chief Warrant Officer David R. Carter, 47, of Centennial, Colo.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), Aurora, Colo.

The National Guardsman had dreamed of being a pilot since his high school days in Kansas, CNN affiliate KDVR reported. He was a chief warrant officer at Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora, Colo. “He was flying our nation’s elite forces into combat and, as an aviator, for him that is what he wanted to do,” Col. Chris Petty, a fellow pilot and Carter’s friend, told KDVR.

Carter’s family friend Yolanda Levesque spoke at a news conference in Centennial, Colorado, on a hilltop selected because its view of the surrounding hills was one of Carter’s favorites, according to KDVR. “He was an outstanding husband and father, son, brother and soldier,” Levesque said. “He was a friend to all who met him ... quick with a smile and always with a twinkle in his beautiful blue eyes.”

Chief Warrant Officer Bryan J. Nichols, 31, of Hays, Kan.  He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan.

Bryan Nichols always wanted to be a solider. His father was in the Army and fought in Vietnam, his ex-wife Jessica Nichols said. Bryan and Jessica met in sixth grade, and she said he enlisted in the military before they had graduated high school. Nichols worked his way up through the ranks, and eventually piloted a helicopter with which he’d had a boyhood fascination. “He came across the Chinook …” she recalled. “His father flew Chinooks.” During the years Bryan and Jessica were married, he did three deployments. She had their son, Braydon, who is now 10. Bryan and Jessica’s marriage ended amicably, and he remarried.

Together with Bryan’s new wife, the three helped raised Braydon. The little boy dreamed also of flying one day, alongside his father, Jessica Nichols said. The boy, instead, posted an iReport on Saturday about his fallen father, in the hopes that the world would never forget him.

Sgt. Patrick D. Hamburger, 30, of Lincoln, Neb.  He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), Grand Island, Neb.

Chris Hamburger said his brother Patrick knew he was about to embark on an important and secret mission when he spoke to his family for the last time.  A helicopter flight engineer, he arrived in Afghanistan for his first tour of duty just days before the crash. Patrick Hamburger had a 2-year-old daughter with Candie Reagan, whom he was planning to marry when he returned to Nebraska next May, his brother said.  He was also helping raise Reagan's 13-year-old daughter. Hamburger sent an e-mail to Reagan the day before his death.

"Please don't worry about me," Hamburger wrote.  He added, "this place isn't going to change me, I'm going to change this place."

Sgt. Alexander J. Bennett, 24, of Tacoma, Wash.  He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan.

After his 2009 deployment to Iraq, the Army specialist moved from Tacoma, Washington, to Overland Park, Kansas, to learn how to be a Chinook mechanic. Sgt. 1st Class Kirk Kuykendall, who was at home in Overland Park recuperating from a helicopter crash himself, told CNN affiliate KCTV that he served with Bennett in Iraq and considered him like a son.

“You wouldn't find a better flight engineer or soldier. … Wherever Alex goes, I will go so I can pay my final respects,” Kuykendall said. Bennett loved cars and the military, and pal Edward Tuck fondly recalled in a KOMO interview the time they spent under the hood of a Honda talking about life.

Another friend, Jessica Hall, told the station that Bennett was always smiling and joking. "He died doing exactly what he loved, she said. “Alex was a hero.”

Spc. Spencer C. Duncan, 21, of Olathe, Kan.  He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan.

Duncan left his hometown in Kansas because he wanted to serve his country, The Olathe News reported.

"He wrote how much he loved his job as a door gunner on a Chinook helicopter," the local paper said. "But he also told his friends that in the quiet amid the stark landscape of Afghanistan, he missed the Kansas sunsets, lying in a truck bed listening to the radio and cuddling with his sweetie."

The airmen, who were assigned to the 24th Special Tactics Squadron, Pope Field, N.C. that were killed were:

Tech. Sgt. John W. Brown, 33, of Tallahassee, Fla.

The technical sergeant from Siloam Springs, Arkansas, studied pre-med before joining the U.S. Air Force to become a pararescueman, his mother, Elizabeth Newlun told CNN affiliate KFSM. His friend, Jon Woods, told the station that Brown was popular, athletic and loved a challenge. “He was just an all-American G.I. Joe, just a great guy who loved his country,” Woods said.

Newlun read KFSM a letter that Brown’s uncle had written, describing the airman as “Rambo without the attitude” and “brave but never arrogant, powerful but always gentle.” He was married and had no children.

Staff Sgt. Andrew W. Harvell, 26, of Long Beach, Calif.

The combat controller with the 24th Special Tactics Squadron was not only a "bad-ass warrior" but also, a loving husband to wife Krista and caring father to sons Hunter and Ethan, his wife said in a statement.

"We will miss him forever but we take solace knowing he gave his life serving his country and fighting for what he believed was right."

Harvell was stationed at Pope Air Force Base, which this year was merged with Fort Bragg, before heading to Afghanistan, according to the Air Force.

Tech. Sgt. Daniel L. Zerbe, 28, of York, Pa.

The 28-year-old Air Force medic joined the military right after graduating from high school in 2001, according to CNN affiliate WGAL-TV. A native of Red Lion, Pennsylvania, who wrestled and played football, Zerbe was a team player who could always be counted on, his former football coach told the station. His friend, Mike Vogel, who joined the Marines after high school, called Zerbe an “absolute hero,” and Red Lion schools superintendent released a statement, saying, “Dan wanted to make a difference in the world, so he joined the military,” according to CNN affiliate WHTM.

soundoff (1,049 Responses)
  1. jacob israel

    תהי נשמתם צרורה בצרור החיים.

    August 13, 2011 at 3:15 am | Report abuse |
  2. aswoc

    "...There are those who give little of the much which they have – and they give it for recognition and their hidden desire makes their gifts unwholesome. And there are those who have little and give it all. These are the believers in life and the bounty of life, and their coffer is never empty. There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward. And there are those who give with pain, and that pain is their baptism. And there are those who give and know not pain in giving, nor do they seek joy, nor give with mindfulness of virtue; They give as in yonder valley the myrtle breathes its fragrance into space. Through the hands of such as these God speaks, and from behind their eyes He smiles upon the earth. It is well to give when asked, but it is better to give unasked, through understanding..." Gibran

    August 13, 2011 at 3:30 am | Report abuse |
  3. IaMomOf5

    God bless these men who paid the ultimate price in defending freedom. Sending my condolences to all their family and friends. I just finished reading through the blog on each of these men. RIP to all these good men.
    (To all the haters out there, find some compassion...families have just lost their brothers, sons, fathers, uncles.)

    August 13, 2011 at 4:37 am | Report abuse |
  4. Tracie

    True Heros! SO proud of all of them and my heart goes out to their families, especially the children.

    August 13, 2011 at 4:46 am | Report abuse |
  5. Avi


    August 13, 2011 at 5:05 am | Report abuse |
  6. rds905

    Makes me sick to read half of these posts....Some of you need to learn to respect those who have given their lives so haplessly for our country. Our freedom and well-being clearly have a much deeper meaning to them than they do to some of us. My sincerest thoughts are with all of their families during this time of great sorrow.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:16 am | Report abuse |
  7. The world is a better place...

    When Nazi officers were questioned as to why they did what they did..... the reply was “just following orders”.

    These men will be held accountable for the decisions they made.... in the court of God, how many of them will say “just following orders”?

    A speech by a dimwit president does NOT make a war legal.

    The U.S. invasion of Afghanistan was every bit as illegal as the invasion of Iraq. Why, then, do so many Americans see it as justifiable?

    The U.N. Charter provides that all member states must settle their international disputes by peaceful means, and no nation can use military force except in self-defense or when authorized by the Security Council. After the 9/11 attacks, the council passed two resolutions, neither of which authorized the use of military force in Afghanistan.

    The invasion of Afghanistan was NOT legitimate self-defense under article 51 of the charter because the attacks on Sept. 11 were criminal attacks, NOT "armed attacks" by another country. Afghanistan did NOT attack the United States. In fact, 15 of the 19 hijackers came from Saudi Arabia. Furthermore, there was NOT an imminent threat of an armed attack on the United States after Sept. 11, or Bush would NOT have waited three weeks before initiating his October 2001 bombing campaign. The necessity for self-defense must be "instant, overwhelming, leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation." This classic principle of self-defense in international law has been affirmed by the Nuremberg Tribunal and the U.N. General Assembly.

    Those who conspired to hijack airplanes and kill thousands of people on 9/11 are guilty of crimes against humanity. They must be identified and brought to justice in accordance with the law. But retaliation by invading Afghanistan is NOT the answer and will only lead to the deaths of more of our troops and Afghan civilians.

    The men who died knew exactly what they were doing and why they were doing it. In simple words they were MURDERERS. They participated in an illegal war.

    August 13, 2011 at 7:36 am | Report abuse |
    • KT in CV

      After reading your moronic little diatribe I felt compelled to reply. “This guy is an absolute fraud, what an intellectually dishonest, hipster douchbag he must be.” I thought. But then I realized, you probably realize what a total POS you are deep down inside. So I’m planning of going about my day.

      August 13, 2011 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • CT Yankee

      The Afghan/Pakistan war may not be agreement with your interpretation of article 51 but it apparently agrees with the U.N.s interpretation because it IS sanctioned by the, what is your premise exactly?.........are you saying you disagree with the U.N. and are better equiped somehow to interpret their charter??

      August 14, 2011 at 8:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Wake up CT... you butt-wipe

      Read the following....

      August 14, 2011 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Berble

      hey "world" ........That doesn't alter the fact that you are incorrect in your facts.

      August 15, 2011 at 8:05 am | Report abuse |
    • CT Yankee

      Oh....... I am wide awake..........and I see you.

      August 15, 2011 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
    • CT Yankee

      Hey............World..........are you from Canada? ARE aware there are Canadian troops in Afghanastan, aren't you?

      August 15, 2011 at 2:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Berble

      What does the U.N.s article 51 have to do with the Nuremberg tribunal?................exactly nothing.............there was no UN in 1945.........and Nuremberg was under the authority of the Allies not the UN..............go back to school.

      August 15, 2011 at 3:00 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Betsy

    They were so handsome, precious and priceless, each and
    everyone of them, full of life and accomplishments.
    They could be on any magazine cover. But they were
    unnamed and unknown heros before they gave their lives.
    The loss is tremendous to their beloved ones, wives,
    children, parents, siblings and friends. They left
    a huge void in the Navy, in the military, in the country,
    and in my heart as well. There should be
    a permanent memorial for all of us to know and
    remember them forever.

    I do not believe in the war. Nonetheless, and doubtless,
    these heros' lives and dedications to their duties
    put the other people who trash the country and the
    world to shame !

    August 13, 2011 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
  9. Christopher Dycha

    I cannot believe all the criticism whenever there is an article about the brave and selfless soldiers that have sacrificed so much. Forget the politics and the reasons why this unfortunate fact of life must go on. If the solution was easy, someone would of ended it all generations ago. The tragic irony is that the same people who probably complain about being unappreciated at their menial jobs, blast the performance, effort and sacrifices these soldiers perform at their jobs. Try to exercise a little compassion for others and situations you might be too arrogant to admit that you can't fully understand. God Bless. Christopher Dycha

    August 13, 2011 at 9:01 am | Report abuse |
  10. Soldier currently in Afghanistan

    Its hard to believe how desensitized to the loss of human life is displayed on this forum. Personal opinions about the ongoing war does not overshadow the fact that these men gave everything and expected nothing from you people that shamelessly mock their memory. Hollywood does a poor job in capturing the psyche of men like these in glorified action films with millionaire actors wearing the uniforms of real men and women that sacrifice their personal well-being voluntarily to support this nation and improve the quality of life of others around the world. For those of you who believe that "you know" what its like to be a soldier, marine, or airman serving in a combat environment based on your "facts" derived from informative websites, Steven Segal movies, or playing call of duty in the comfort of your living room, I'd happily invite you to join me and my Infantry platoon on a combat patrol along roads laced with IED's or along a ridgeline in the remote mountains of the Wataphur Valley. Until you have walked a mile in a service members shoes, fired your weapon to defend your men to your left and right, and faced the daily dangers of sniper fire or indirect fire while walking to the telephones to call your loved ones, keep your insensitive, and often moronic comments to yourself. We as soldiers may not always believe in the decisions made at the macro level, but what we do believe in at the micro level is performing our jobs to the best of our abilities whether we are thanked or not. To those of you that continue to support members of our Armed Services, we thank you. For those who do not, we will continue provide you with the freedoms and liberties you enjoy as a free American on a daily basis. To the friends and families who have lost loved one's in both theaters of war, we your brothers in arms, will continue the fight in your memory until every Soldier, marine, airman, and sailor comes home. Your memories will Never be forgotten.

    August 13, 2011 at 9:14 am | Report abuse |
    • Betsy

      To Soldier currently in Afghanistan : Many many people like me support you 100$ despite different opinions about the war. We hope also you come home soon and sound. Highest solute.

      August 14, 2011 at 7:43 am | Report abuse |
  11. Xcrom

    They died in the Lithium War.

    August 13, 2011 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
    • CT Yankee

      Chile is the top producer of lithium in the world..............of the 10 top producers of lithium, of which the US is one, NONE are in the middle east or anywhere near Afghanistan, Pakistan or India or Russia or eastern europe or.............see where I'm going with this?

      August 15, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jessicaber

    I hope that you make it to the phone.

    August 13, 2011 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |

    Are we ever going to hear the end of all these sob stories about those bozoes who got killed last Saturday? We never even hear that many about the Russians while they were there. In fact, the right-wing news media lambasted them while today they keep trying to make the NATO forces out to be the heroes they're not!!!

    August 13, 2011 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Russell from Boston

      Apparently you believe that the Taliban should be allowed to take over Afghanistan without a fight. Since it is their stated intention to bring a very harsh interpretation of Islamic law to the entire world, I guess that you believe in or at least support this perverted form of Islam. As such, it makes sense that you don't respect our soldiers or others from the coalition, since you, dear friend, are the enemy.

      August 13, 2011 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
    • jkm

      You are a loser! Even if you don't like the military, you should be ashamed of your behavior stomping on the graves of your fellow Americans! Hopefully, you move outside of the United States and see why the rest of the world desires to be like the U.S.

      August 13, 2011 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Maivtsu

      You ought to be ashamed of yourself for making such a statement. These 'Bozoes' you call are the ones with one of the world's most dangerous jobs. Let me help you understand: They are out there "to serve you, to guard your freedom, and the American Way of life" and as a soldier, this is the standard I live by in the military. Yet you ungratefully take this for granted. You can thank these "Bozoes" and me for the freedom to express yourself in such a manner. I'd like you to imagine being in a society that does not allow you this certain freedom where an opinion of such may just cost you your life. Now that would be a sob story.

      August 13, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • USN warrior

      The only bozo here is you!!! How can you say something like that, it surly is a joke, cause no person in their right mind would say something like that. The Russians? I mean W_T_F? They were an oppressing force in Afganistan, communists, you idiot. A lot of people like you forget that we didn't start this fight, however as a member of the military I promise you that we are going to finish it!!! Sleep tight tonight, and know that bozos like us are providing you with that comfort you sorry piece of S_H_I_T..........

      August 13, 2011 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • henry

      Non of them would have been killed if the Us would mind theire own bussines and stay home. why is the whole world yours to control?And i might at you pick and choose.

      August 13, 2011 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • TonyInMN

      RUFFNUTT – These men were truly the best of the best....dedicating their careers and ultimately their lives to protect and preserve freedom.

      If it wasn't for those "bozoes" (as you called them)...someone as profoundly stupid as you, wouldn't have the right to express their opinion.

      August 13, 2011 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • USN warrior

      henry-why is the world ours to control?–you ask..... Well here is an answer for you, because if the US is not on top of things, like they weren't in the beginning of last century and in the 30s–millions, if not billions this time around, will die. We know what happens when the US just minds their own business, Nazis, Commies, Islamic terrorists, and etc. go on the prowl and cause all kinds of problems. So, until people in Europe fix that failed experiment called the EU, and China continues to be communist, the US will continue to police the world weather you like it or not. It is just the way of life. I rather drink some coke, eat some burgers, and speak my mind, over anything good that the above listed regimes have to offer. The funny part is that I was not even born in this country, but I have seen much of the rest of the world, and I promise you it would be a lot worse if it wasn't for the US..................

      August 13, 2011 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joseph McCarthy

      Thank you RUFFNUTT for your post above. I'm getting aggravated with all these ignoramuses here bellittling you with their stupidity. My advice is to just ignore them. Only henry said the right thing here and I want to thank him, too!

      August 13, 2011 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • bill henschel

      Am I the only person who thinks it was a foolish mistake for Obama to even mention Seal Team 6 in announcing that we got OBL? Why couldn't he simply have said "Secret commandos in the service of the USA today eliminated OBL. Thank you very much." What he did say got these people on the chopper killed. Now with the government exposing their pictures and names we are putting their wives and children (yes I said children) in mortal danger. I cannot believe this stupidity at the highest levels of our government.

      August 13, 2011 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott in NH

      @Russell from Boston, Yes, what the Taliban has done to women in Afghanistan, who used to be free, is horrific. It was a huge mistake by the Republicans in the US to put them in charge, knowing they would do that.

      August 13, 2011 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott in NH

      The stories about the fallen men are tearjerking and real. Their loved ones will grieve for decades and ruffnutt's comments are insensitive and cruel. But... one does have to wonder why the tearjerking stories about the 1m Iraqis who have died have been printed on the covers of every newspaper in the world and run on every TV station in the world, except in the USA?

      August 13, 2011 at 9:03 pm | Report abuse |

      Glad to see another patriotic American exercising the very same rights I swore to defend...You are welcome.

      August 13, 2011 at 10:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Shupe Sgt/E-5 Fire Team Leader

      Bozoes? You are able to sit in front of your computer and type your ignorance because of soldiers that sacrifice so much to give you the freedom to do so! You are an ignorant fool. You obviously have no respect for the rights you have because of Patriots that died to ensure you get them. Someone like you turns my stomach to listen to or read your gibberish. A dark side of me wishes you would have the misfortune of being kidnapped by Islamic extremists so that your so-labeled bozoes could laugh at you after they saved your pathetic ass.

      August 13, 2011 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Russell from Boston

    This is a tremendous loss for our country. My heart goes out to all the families, friends and Team members. Any Americans, and anyone that believes as I do that we are one of the only countries that represents hope for peace and safety on a global scale will grieve over this loss. The world will not be a better place if these Sharia radicals convert country after country into Islamic Caliphates as they are attempting. Someone has to stand up for the rights of all peace-loving people that believe in the rights of all faiths to coexist in the face of murder, genocide and armed intimidation from the Taliban, Hezbollah, Hamas and other Islamic radicals. It is very sad that the cost of this effort includes the lives of such great heroes as those that died this past week and the thousands that we have lost over the years. We are at war and nobody should forget that.

    August 13, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  15. Kuwait_999

    Thank you for sacrifies. May Jesus comfort your familly.

    To all.... You can go to "Navy Seal" and donate for the SEAL's familly.

    Thank you

    August 13, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Cesar

      Hey you Kuwait_999, will you kindly leave Jesus' name out of this? It has no place here as there is nothing holy about this obscene war!

      August 13, 2011 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • soldier

      Hey Cesar, why don't you leave YOUR name out of this. It has no place here, as this comment board is ment to honor these fallen troops

      August 13, 2011 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
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