10 March 2011

Keeping perspective

Passing along this Facebook post I read on milblogging.com

"Charlie Sheen is all over the news because he`s a celebrity drug addict," it said, "while Andrew Wilfahrt 31, Brian Tabada 21, Rudolph Hizon 22, Chauncy Mays 25, are soldiers who gave their lives this week with no media mention. Please honor them by posting this as your status for a little while."

Read more ---->

"Cpl. Andrew Wilfahrt, a gay Minnesota man who went back in the closet to join the military, died Sunday while on patrol in Afghanistan when an IED exploded during an attack on his unit. He was 31. And his mother loved him very, very much."
From Queerty at http://www.queerty.com/cpl-andrew-wilfahrt-died-in-afghanistan-a-semi-closeted-gay-soldier-nobody-cares-about-sexuality-20110305/#ixzz1GF6fuZ4M

"The Army says 21-year-old Spc. Brian Tabada of Las Vegas died Feb. 27 in the Kunar province. The Army says Tabada suffered fatal injuries when his unit came under fire from small arms and a rocket propelled grenade."
From Army Times at http://militarytimes.com/valor/army-spc-brian-tabada/5837150/

Rudolph Hizon, 21 was know as Ryan to his friends and loved ones: "Hizon died Feb. 28, in Logar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using an improvised explosive device. He had deployed to Afghanistan with his unit in October, according to officials at Ft. Polk where he was based."

"Chauncy's 3-year-old daughter waved an American flag as her father's coffin, draped in red, white, and blue was lifted from the plane. Katherine watched as her husband's body was prepared for its final journey home.
     'He made sure to tell me at least once a day that he loved me and for me to tell the kids that he loved them and to give them kisses,' Katherine recalled."

SSGT Mays actually died alongside another soldier when their unit in Afghanistan was attacked with an IED. Also Killed was SPC Christopher Stark. "Stark’s “strong sense of loyalty and devotion to his team made him a very reliable technician,” said U.S. Army Sgt. Chandara Hak of Santa Rosa, Calif., and 705th EOD member. “You could always count on Spc. Stark to have your back in any situation.”

Also killed in the same time period:
Sgt. Kristopher J. Gould, 25 of Saginaw Michigan, on his third deployment, in Ghazni Province when his unit was attacked with an IED.

PFC David R. Fahey, a 23 year old from Norwalk, CT, in Kandahar when his unit was attacked with and IED.

Killed since these deaths were reported:

SRA Nicholas J Alden, 25, of Williamston, SC, and A1C Zachary R. Cuddeback of VA., both of a shooting at Frankfurt Airport, Germany. “German officials say a 21-year-old temporary letter sorter has admitted targeting Americans when he opened fire with a handgun on a busload of U.S. airmen at Frankfurt's airport on Wednesday, killing two and wounding two others. The airmen were on their way to deployment in Afghanistan.”

From The Associated Press, as reported in The Canadian Press: http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/article/ALeqM5ggs7kjNrFRDxHHINEV1E1ZD-4RtA?docId=6135932

SPC Jason M. Weaver, killed in an IED attack in Khandahar. SPC Weaver enlisted in the Army as an MP.

CPL Jordan Stanton, of Rancho Santa Margarita, CA, 20, died while conducting combat operations in Helmand. “He was a wonderful young man and doing everything for his country,” said June Romine, an aunt of Stanton’s. “We’re all very proud of Jordan and all that he has accomplished.”
From Patch: http://ranchosantamargarita.patch.com/articles/jordan-stanton-rsm-resident-killed-in-afghanistan

SSGT Mark C Wells, 31, of San Jose, CA, who died of wounds suffered in an IED attack in Helmand. Before deploying to Afghanistan in August, he had served 14 months in Iraq.

PFC Kalin C. Johnson, 19, of Lexington, SC, died in Afghanistan of non-combat injuries. No further details have been released from the DOD. “It’s just heartbreaking. It’s horrible. He had a small child,” Christina Chandler of Lexington told the Post and Courier of Charleston, S.C.

SPC Andrew P Wade, 22, Antioch, IL died 9 MAR of a non combat related incident in Kunduz. "He's not only like a best friend to me, he's like a brother, someone you can't replace in life. And the memories we're all going to remember, we're going to take that with us and always remember what a great person he was," said Steve McNutt, friend.
As a member of the Antioch High School soccer team, Wade played sweeper, a crucial position that anchors the defense. It was a perfect role for him.

CPL Loren M. Buffalo, 20, of Mountain Pine, AK, also died yesterday when attacked with an IED.

I had heard nothing about these troops until I started looking, but I have seen Charlie Sheen on the news every day for the past week. We need to remember that we are at war and our fellow citizens are in danger. Their families are at home worried about them.

We owe them more thanks then we could ever give.


  1. Thank you so much for posting this. After a year of living here in Landstuhl, Germany, my perspective is so radically different. We feel these losses - such painful losses - here in a way that we could never have anticipated prior to arriving. I am part of a small playgroup for our son and most of the women/moms are military and so young - and one of the husbands just deployed for a year. Our favorite pediatrician at the hospital just deployed for a year. It is all so frightening and real. Thank you for what you have done and continue to do, Chris.Our love to your whole family.
    Jennifer Robinson

  2. Hey bro,

    Thank you for sharing this. I biked passed an enormous American flag the other day and it was such a source of pride, inspiration, and also a reminder of the sacrifices that have been made for my freedom to experience our country by bike. I'm camping out tonight at veterans memorial park in Georgia and I feel so proud to be American. I hope that I can honor the sacrifices of those young men and women by always being thankful for this beautiful country we live in, supporting wounded veterans, and thanking every veteran I meet, something I have done this year and plan to continue for the rest of my life


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