Some Casualties in NATO Copter Crash Named; SEALs Among the Dead

Reports say up to 22 of the 30 Americans killed in Afghanistan were Navy SEALs, two from the West Coast; families start to reveal their losses.

UPDATE, 7:20 PM: 

The U.S. casualties have dropped to 30, reports the New York Times; overall, 38 died.

Though there has been no official list of the dead, families have started to reveal their losses.

The AP, via the Washington Post, reports that a woman said her grandson, Aaron Carson Vaughn from Tennessee, was one of the SEALs killed. Television station WREG adds Vaughn's photo.

The Des Moines Register cited the loss of Jon Tumilson of Rockford, Iowa, and the Shreveport Times noted the deaths of Chief Petty Officer Robert James Reeves and Lt. Commander Jonas Kelsall. Kelsall's father confirmed he trained in San Diego.

The Army Times offers further detail, saying 17 of the special forces members who were killed were SEALs—two from the West Coast—and five were support personnel. Other military members killed were from the Army and Air Force.

The Los Angeles Times reports many of the SEAL casualties were from SEAL Team 6, the unit that took out Osama bin Laden, but those killed were NOT members who were part of the May bin Laden raid.



News continues to come in about Saturday's helicopter crash in Afghanistan, the deadliest incident in the 10-year conflict.

President Obama, in a statement on the White House Twitter feed, said, “At this difficult hour, all Americans are united in support of our men and women in uniform.”

The Navy initially announced the crash, and the Defense Department expressed condolences to the families of those lost.

The identities of the dead have yet to be released, pending notification of families. 

Here's what major outlets are reporting:

The Associated Press reports, via the Huffington Post, that more than 20 of those lost are Navy SEALs; in all, 31 Americans died

The New York Times says 38 died in total, including crew and escorts, and the aircraft was shot down by a rocket-propelled grenade from the Taliban.

The Washington Post reports it was a NATO Chinook helicopter and that Afghan President Hamid Karzai has expressed condolences.

BBC says the crash took place in the Wardak province, west of the nation's capital, Kabul, and adds a list of the deadliest attacks against NATO forces in Afghanistan.

daniel phelan August 06, 2011 at 07:03 PM
The Eyes of the Warrior Give nothing up. Show nothing but force. Be proud. It won’t get to you. The mission at hand. Stay focused. The justifications. That is not your job. The training. You have to trust. Your peers. You are confident. Smoke check. Smoke check. The tears in the eyes of a warrior are dried by the fire. Smoke check. Smoke check. The eyes of a warrior are dry by tears withheld. Smoke check. Smoke check. Now is not the time a warrior cries. When it is time, you will see it like I have Tears in the eyes of a warrior. Dedicated to those who give their lives to protect the people of their country.
Jared Morgan August 07, 2011 at 05:15 PM
Thanks for this, Daniel.


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