Thursday, May 31, 2012

2 Para return to Goose Green

May 31, 2012 by

This week was the thirtieth anniversary of the Battle of Goose Green in the Falkland Islands.

The Argentines surrendered following two days of fierce fighting, which cost 2 Para seventeen lives including their Commanding Officer, Col H Jones.

Falkland Islanders marked the day with a ceremony at the scene of the battle.

Islanders gathered to pay their respects to those who fell at the Battle of Darwin Hill and Goose Green.

Veterans and serving members of the Armed Forces currently based on the Islands joined to remember the lives lost.

Just 600 Paras assaulted more than 1400 well dug-in Argentines in what was some of the fiercest fighting of the conflict.

Bad weather prevented Harriers flying, or the 105 mm light guns firing.

In one of the bravest acts of the war, Commanding Officer Col H Jones was killed. He died after being shot from behind while assaulting a trench; he fell just a few feet from the position he was about to attack.

Also attending the memorial service were many of the one hundred and twelve civilians who were locked up by the Argentines in the community hall at Goose Green.

They were liberated by 2 Para when the Argentines surrendered.

Muslim Child-Rape Gangs in Britain

From Stop Radical Islam:

by: Soeren Kern

Nine Muslim men belonging to a child-rape gang in northwestern England have received hefty prison sentences for trafficking and raping young British girls.

The three-month sexual grooming trial at a court in Liverpool, which ended on May 9, has drawn nationwide attention to the sexual abuse of children and women by Muslim immigrants, and British police are currently investigating at least 40 other cases of child rapes perpetrated by Muslims in northern England.

While Muslim groups have sought to discredit the police investigations by accusing British authorities of "racism" and "Islamophobia," it recently emerged that British police had known for more than a decade that Muslim rape gangs were targeting young girls in England, but they ignored evidence of the rapes and failed to act because they were afraid of being accused of racism.

The Liverpool Crown Court heard horrific testimony from five victims -- the youngest was 13 when the abuse began -- who were plied with alcohol, drugs and gifts so they could be "passed around" among a group of men aged between 24 and 59 for sex in apartments, houses, cars, taxis and kebab shops...


There is much more here. Follow the links, folks, and pay attention.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Military Bands Perform in Times Square

NEW YORK (May 27, 2011) The U.S. Navy Band Northeast, from Newport, Rhode Island, performs on Military Appreciation Day at Times Square during Fleet Week New York 2011. Fleet Week has been New York City's celebration of the sea services since 1984 and is an opportunity for citizens of New York and the surrounding tri-state area to meet Sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen, as well as see first-hand, the capabilities of today's maritime services. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Jesse Monford/Released)


NEW YORK (NNS) -- Military bands from across the sea services performed for thousands at Times Square in support of Fleet Week New York 2012 and the the Bicentenial of the War of 1812 May 27.

The Navy, Marine and Coast Guard bands performed before a captive audience in one of the heaviest traffic areas of New York City.

Spectators from across the globe traveled to take part in the festivities surrounding Fleet Week.

"We heard the band perform last year and decided that we would not miss it again," said Sara Baynum, a spectator from North Carolina. "They played beautifully."

The U.S. Navy New Orleans Jazz Band, Quantico Marine Corps Band and Coast Guard Dixieland Band caught the attention of wandering tourists and drew them in to the festivities.

"We came to New York to celebrate our three-year marriage anniversary. We heard the music from three blocks over and decided to come over and see where it was coming from," said Douglas Fagan, a native of Chicago.

The joint efforts of each sea service's band provided entertainment to citizens that normally would not have had the opportunity to experience.

Held nearly every year since 1984, Fleet Week New York is the city's celebration of the sea services. Fleet Week New York provides an opportunity for the citizens of New York City and the surrounding tri-state area to meet Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, as well as see, first-hand, the latest capabilities of today's maritime services. More than 6,000 service men and women from the U.S. and coalition nations will arrive aboard the ships.

This year, Fleet Week New York is one of the signature events around the country commemorating OpSail 2012, the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 and the Star-Spangled Banner.

The commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812 is a salute to all Sailors and Marines who fought gallantly in that conflict, who served in all our nation's conflicts since then, and who are defending freedom around the world today.

(c) USNavy...

UK and US soldiers jump together onto Salisbury Plain

From MoD:

A Training and Adventure news article

30 May 12

Over 150 paratroopers from the UK and the United States have parachuted together onto Salisbury Plain as part of an annual exchange programme called Exercise Airdrop Warrior.

Pudsey-based soldiers from 4th Battalion The Parachute Regiment (4 PARA) joined forces with members of the US Army's Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command (Airborne) who are based at Fort Bragg in North Carolina.

The paratroopers built on their knowledge and experience of airborne operations by jumping using each other's equipment and both nations' Hercules C-130 aircraft....

For more - and pictures! - go here.

Wednesday Hero

Rear Adm. David Boone & Col. Paul Montanas
Rear Adm. David Boone & Col. Paul Montanas
U.S. NavyU.S. Marines

Rear Adm. David Boone, Naval District Washington director of shore readiness, talks with Col. Paul Montanas, Marine Barracks Washington commander, before a 4x100 meter relay at the 2012 Washington D.C. Special Olympics. Leaders from each branch of the military and Department of Defense ran with athletes as part of Military Day during the day's events.

Photo Courtesy U.S. Navy taken by Sr. Airman Steele C. G. Britton

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives just so others may get to enjoy freedom. For that I am proud to call them Hero.
Those Who Say That We're In A Time When There Are No Heroes, They Just Don't Know Where To Look

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Monday, May 28, 2012

Remembering SSG Cowdrey( Brian) in AFG

Today being Memorial Day in America, it is really timely that in Afghanistan, my 'nephew' SSG Brian Cowdrey has been remembered as an American Hero at a ceremony held at FOB Fenty:

On Memorial day many people visit memorial sites and cemeteries to honor those who have died serving our great country. Today the Soldiers at Forward Operating Base Fenty, Afghanistan are honoring a fallen hero and dedicating a helicopter ramp in his memory.

82ND Combat Aviation Brigade... Video by Donna Davis.

From RC - East:

Monday, 28 May 2012 23:31

The real “memorial” day

Written by U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Eric Pahon, RC-East PAO

82nd Combat Aviation Brigade Troopers salute a memorial dedicated to U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Robert "Brian" Cowdrey.  Cowdrey died Oct. 13, 2011 while rescuing wounded servicemembers from a small combat outpost near the Pakistan Border.  MEDEVAC troops on Forward Operating Base Fenty had the helicopter landing pad in the V.I.P. arrival area re-named "Cowdrey Ramp," and erected a small monument to honor his life on Memorial Day.
82nd Combat Aviation Brigade Troopers salute a memorial dedicated to U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Robert "Brian" Cowdrey. Cowdrey died Oct. 13, 2011 while rescuing wounded servicemembers from a small combat outpost near the Pakistan Border. MEDEVAC troops on Forward Operating Base Fenty had the helicopter landing pad in the V.I.P. arrival area re-named "Cowdrey Ramp," and erected a small monument to honor his life on Memorial Day. Photo by U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Eric Pahon

JALALABAD, Afghanistan – There wasn’t a BBQ with friends. No kids splashed in a pool or lined up for a rollercoaster on the official first day of the “summer fun” season. No-one got the day off. Memorial day wasn’t anything except a day to gather and remember, mark a patch of concrete with a small monument, and lament losing a friend.

“Sometimes, I think about how many lives Brian affected,” said U.S. Army Capt. Augustine Castronovo, the MEDEVAC platoon leader on Forward Operating Base Fenty, near Jalalabad, Afghanistan.

On October 13th, 2011, Castronovo’s MEDEVAC unit responded to an urgent call from a small observation post in Kunar province, near the Pakistan border. The post had been under heavy enemy fire, and three Coalition Soldiers were critically wounded, requiring evacuation.

Among the medics on board was U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Robert “Brian” Cowdrey, from Atwater, Ohio. Cowdrey was seasoned combat veteran on his fourth deployment, known for his “hard right over easy wrong” attitude.

As crews raced to rescue the wounded, weather deteriorated as the number of patients increased. The Task Force Talon, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade MEDEVAC crews made the decision to continue on, despite dangerous, rugged terrain and limited visibility. Rain showers soaked the valley they traveled.

“U.S. Soldiers fought side-by-side with their Afghan counterparts. What happened at OP Shal wasn’t about politics, foreign policy, or ethnicity,” said Castronovo, of Woodland Hills, Calif. “These Soldiers were fighting for each other’s lives.”

Cowdrey jumped from the helicopter as soon as the pilot got two of three wheels on the ground, and ran to find the wounded. The helicopter delicately balanced on the side of the mountain, the whirling blades of the main rotor just a few feet from the ground.

“When it came to the wounded, it wasn’t about the uniform or the country of origin- for Brian, it was about helping another human being,” said U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Deane Bostick, a flight medic who was with Cowdrey that night.
Cowdrey loaded the two most critically-wounded patients onto the Black Hawk, then asked for permission to go back and get more.

“Brian didn’t have to go back,” said Castronovo, “but leaving a wounded Soldier behind never crossed his mind.”

“I was with Brian the night he left us,” said Bostick. “The last thing I said to him was ‘be safe,’ and with a crooked smile he responded with the same, and then he was all business.”

On his way back with yet another patient, Cowdrey was struck by one of the low rotor blades, killing him instantly.

“A ground medic who witnessed the events told me ‘as Brian moved to the aircraft with the third patient it appeared he pushed the patient to safety before being mortally wounded,’” said Bostick. “I would like to think that was the case; that his last act in life was to ensure the safety of another. That is who he was.”

“Brian gave his life while in the service of others,” said Castronovo to a crowd of commanders, MEDEVAC crew members and pilots collected in front of a sheet-draped memorial just off the main runway on Fenty. “He died doing what he loved most and I know in my heart that he wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. Brian laid down his life out of love for his brothers.”

To honor Cowdrey’s life and sacrifices, the MEDEVAC crews serving with Task Force Saber in Jalalabad dedicated FOB Fenty’s V.I.P. landing pad to Cowdrey, and marked the site with a memorial- a simple marble plaque atop a pedestal of concrete.

“I will never forget you, nor will anyone else who was fortunate enough to have known you,” said Bostick. “I am humbled to have known this man and think it only appropriate that here at Jalalabad Airfield the V.I.P. pad be named in his honor, forever to be known as ‘Cowdrey Pad.’”

“Sometimes, I think about how many lives Brian affected,” said Castronovo. “I try to count how many mothers, fathers, sisters, and brothers can embrace their loved ones because of Brian’s actions? How many family trees will continue to grow because Brian saved lives? Brian’s impact is immeasurable.”

ALWAYS remembered. ALWAYS honoured. ALWAYS Loved.

*Previous columns about Brian:

RIP SSG Robert B. Cowdrey

SSG Brian Cowdrey: "Who Shall I send?"

Music and Me: For Brian

Fighting for a Life; Fighting to Bring Home Every Body He Could

For Pat: Welcome Home

Prayers for you and the family, Don. I so love you...

Some Gave All: Captain Stephen James Healey

Captain Stephen James Healey killed in Afghanistan

A Military Operations news article

27 May 12

It is with sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm that Captain Stephen James Healey, from 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh, was killed in Afghanistan yesterday, Saturday 26 May 2012.

Captain Healey commanded the Combined Force Burma reconnaissance platoon and, whilst conducting a vehicle patrol in the north of the Nahr-e Saraj district of Helmand province, his vehicle struck an improvised explosive device. He was given immediate first aid before being flown to the military hospital at Camp Bastion where, sadly, his death was confirmed.

Captain Stephen James Healey
Captain Healey was born on 19 September 1982 in Cardiff. On leaving school he became a semi-professional footballer; playing for a number of clubs in the South Wales area including an apprenticeship with Swansea City. He continued to play whilst completing a degree in Sports Science at Swansea University. He joined the Army in 2007 and was commissioned into the 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh in 2008.

In 2009 he was awarded a Mention in Dispatches for his actions on Op HERRICK 11 as the Officer Commanding 4 Platoon, B Company. In 2011 he was selected to command the reconnaissance platoon and led their Op HERRICK 16 deployment. He deployed to Afghanistan on 9 March 2012, where he took over responsibility at Checkpoint Langar as part of Combined Force Burma.

Captain Healey leaves behind his father John, mother Kerry, brother Simon and girlfriend Thea.

Captain Healey's family have paid the following tribute:
"Stephen was all you could wish for in a son, brother, uncle and friend. He will be sadly missed by us all. He managed to do more in his 30 years than most people do in a lifetime."
His girlfriend, Thea, paid her own tribute:
"Stephen will always be in my heart. I will miss him so much, he was my love, my life and my everything. Now he rests in peace, he was living the life he wanted to do with his men."
Lieutenant Colonel Stephen Webb, Commanding Officer, 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh, said:
"Captain Stephen Healey will be remembered by the officers and soldiers of 1st Battalion The Royal Welsh as one of the most charismatic and professional leaders any of us will have had the privilege of serving with.

"He was a brilliant Army Officer and a truly outstanding individual. As the Recce Platoon Commander he cared deeply for his soldiers and they, in return, loved and respected him. And it was very easy to respect him. He had a calm, assured nature, an understated charm and the sort of personality that made it so easy to warm to him so very quickly - quick-witted and sharp his personality lightened any conversation.

"Steve combined this natural leadership with a professionalism that was second to none. Tactically astute, clear-thinking and tremendously brave he was an excellent Platoon Commander. Already awarded a Mention in Despatches for his bravery on Op HERRICK 11, he was deeply committed to his role here on Op HERRICK 16 and he relished the challenge of bringing the best out of those around him, something he excelled at because he led from the front in everything that he did.

"But Steve will be equally missed for the enormous contribution to wider Battalion life. In the Officers' Mess he was at the heart of everything good and in addition to being an outstanding footballer (he joined the Army after a career as a professional) he was a gifted athlete, excelling at almost any sport he turned his hand to....

Much more in the words who know and love this Fallen Hero the most. Go here and pause and honour him.

Rest In Peace, Sir. Never forgotten.

Memorial Day: Remember With Honor

From Mike's Dad, Robert Stokely:

Memorial Day is a very special day. It was originally called Decoration Day

It is a day we have the opportunity to stop, even for a brief moment, and Remember With Honor the 1,000,000 or so men and women who gave their lives on the field of battle to found, protect and preserve our freedoms and American way of life. A high price was paid by each one of these men and women.

Some gave their tomorrows for us to have a new today each and every day. To say they were all in is an understatement. Those who had no children committed the tomorrows of future unborn generations who will now never be born.

And their families have paid a never ending price as well. When I have been asked what I think the cost of Freedom is, I answer a lifetime of love, for that is what the Families of the Fallen bear each day as they remember the loved one they lost. Memorial Day is a day for happiness and celebration, and well we all should, for a high price was paid that we might do so in freedom and security from the enemies who would wipe us off the face of the earth, but for the 1,000,000 who have gave their lives for you and I.

Some ask me from time to time how to make it better for the Families of the Fallen. I don't think there is but one real way to make it better, but that is not going to happen for no person has the power to give us back the loved one we lost. But it is helpful, at least to me, to know that people care what my son, SGT Mike Stokely, gave America and I would suggest others who have lost someone in war would feel the same way.

The best way in my eyes to show you care is to Make it Matter. Love America as much as the 1,000,000 have shown they loved America. Live life fully and enjoy the freedom that has been preserved for you. And, when you get an opportunity, even if it is only a small one, care about someone around you, whether a stranger, friend or family member and give a little of yourself to make it better for them. And on this Memorial Day, if only for a brief moment, Remember With Honor 1,000,000 and those yet to come, who have made the sacrifice of a Lifetime of Love. They have entrusted their forever to you.

Robert Stokely
proud dad SGT Mike Stokely
KIA 16 AUG 05 near Yusufiyah Iraq
USA E 108 CAV 48th Brigade Combat Team Georgia Army National Guard

Mike's grave yesterday.

We are the Land of the Free, because of the Brave, who volunteer to defend all that the Star Spangled Banner represents.

Remember them ALL - and their families - with honour.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Today I join the Free Speech Blogburst

One of the lessons I learned early on in my Milblogging 'apprenticeship' at Tanker Bros was that some readers resort to personal attacks when they disagree with what I write. Mostly the attacks are verbal - and yes, I DO have quite the file of those - and I dismiss them as I refuse to print them for public view. Occasionally, such moronic diatribes go beyond verbal and threaten physical violence. Yes, I do know about those too. Something about free speech for them but not for me. Funny how that works.

Today, blogs across the internet are standing in solidarity with a blogger who has been threatened beyond the point of casual dismissal, and to the point of dangerous. So today I am participating in an organised "Blogburst".

From Wake Up America comes this:

Friday, May 25, We Will Join The 'Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day'

Yesterday many of us became aware of a convicted terrorist, the Speedway Bomber, Brett Kimberlin, who has been terrorizing bloggers for daring to report the facts, some to the point where Kimberlin abusing the court system to file over 100 lawsuits, others forced to leave their home for fear of their family's lives.

My update from yesterdays piece explains what conservative bloggers are doing on May 25, 2012, this Friday:


[Major Update] May 25, 2012 - "Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day."

Michelle Malkin (thanks for link by the way) explains what this type of coordinated messaging used to be called:

For those of you who are old fogies in the blogosphere, you’ll remember theblogburst” concept — hundreds of bloggers of all sizes getting together to push an idea or action item. In this case, a blogburst would raise the cost of the online terrorists’ speech-squelching business immensely. It’s a collective show of support and force.

This whole travesty has been largely ignored by many and major media outlets have not done their due diligence in reporting it so others, such as myself, were not even aware of this man nor his threats, abuses or harassment of our fellow bloggers, victims of his crimes or anyone he considered his "enemy."

That has now changed as awareness has been raised.
Malkin has a list of those reporting this.
FilmLadd has a list.
The Conservatory has a list.

Lee Stranahan, who has came up with the idea of the "Everybody Blog About Brett Kimberlin Day" has given open permission on his post to repost his piece:

Brett Kimberlin is a convicted bomber, perjurer and left-wing attack dog. He’s attacked — in no particular order — conservative bloggers like Andrew Breibart, Patterico, Liberty Chick, Aaron Worthing, Stacy McCain and others.

Here’s a short, easy to follow video I put together on Kimberlin:...

She has much more, and I urge you to go read it, and follow all the links she has, here.

Laughing Wolf at BlackFive is his usual succinct self here:

Free Speech Blogburst

Posted By Laughing_Wolf • [May 23, 2012]

This is a Team Blackfive post.

There is no one at this blog who has not sworn to defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign or domestic. Several have literally provided blood, sweat, and tears to that oath, and to protect rights inlcuding the right to free speech. Several here have been threatened and/or dealt with security issues related to upholding that oath and participation at this site.

Today, several bloggers face threats, threats that have caused them to take security measures up to and including moving to keep their families safe. You need to learn about Brett Kemberlin, what he was convicted of doing, what is being done, and who is funding it. The best places to start are at Michelle Malkin, Instapundit, Ace, Day-by-Day, and Jawa.

Team Blackfive stands in solidarity with them, and is glad to join the blogburst to shine some light where it is clearly needed. Free speech is never truly free -- it is only free because good people stand up no matter the threat to make it so. Team Blackfive stands, do you?

Go over there and read the comments, join the conversation.

The Other McCain that is the subject of the latest, ongoing campaign to silence free speech, to intimidate a blogger against sharing the TRUTHS that are on the public record?

Never Doubt That God Answers Prayer

Posted on | May 21, 2012 |

‘Speedway Bomber’: Criminal terrorist Brett Kimberlin was convicted in 1981

Law enforcement officials have been made aware that convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin appears to be engaged in an attempt to intimidate me into being silent about his sordid criminal history.

Appropriate precautions have been taken to ensure the safety of my family and others who might be endangered if Kimberlin resorts to violence to accomplish his malicious purposes. At the urging of concerned friends, we have vacated our former residence and I am now blogging from a secret location which Kimberlin will be unable to discover or reach. Nevertheless, we sincerely ask for intercessory prayer, that God will send angels to guard us in this grave crisis....

Go read the rest of this here.

It is indeed a grave crisis when a blogger has to go into hiding, and over the years he is not the first that I have been aware of. Bottom line is, none of us can allow a blogger to be browbeaten into silence, even if we might disagree with what they say.

Remember this? : When they came for me, there was no-one left to speak.

If defenders of free speech allow this kind of threatening intimidation to succeed in silencing any ONE of us, we are all in grave danger of losing our rights to freedom of speech.

As Laughing Wolf says:

Free speech is never truly free -- it is only free because good people stand up no matter the threat to make it so. Team Blackfive stands, do you?

My answer is Yes! I stand.. What is YOUR answer?

Check out War On Terror News' insights on this convicted felon. Go over to This Ain't Hell and The Blaze also.

Nice Deb talks about the silence ( she calls it malpractice, and I agree) from the msm on this important story.Link
One of my personal favourite posts about this terrorist? The Streetsweeper Chronicles. Check it out.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

RCMP take over the Horse Guards Parade

A member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (left) and his Household Cavalry counterpart pass on Horse Guards Parade, London.

[Picture: Trooper Mark Larner, Crown Copyright/MOD 2012]

24 May 12

The Household Cavalry have handed their duties to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to guard Her Majesty The Queen at Horse Guards Parade.

Re-enacting a gesture made by her father, King George VI, in 1936, HM The Queen has seen fit to celebrate the Commonwealth by inviting the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to take part in British ceremonial this summer.

A strong relationship between the Royal Family and the Mounties was forged in 1904, when The Queen's grandfather, King Edward VII, granted the Canadian Mounted Police the prefix 'Royal' in recognition of the Force's many services to Canada and the Empire.

Yesterday, 23 May, 15 men and horses from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police proudly rode down the Mall for the 11 o'clock Changing of The Queen's Life Guard ceremony with the Household Cavalry.

After special training by members of the Household Cavalry riding staff, the Mounties performed the centuries' old tradition, for real, for one day only....

Go read and learn some history here.

Fleet Week New York 2012

Fleet Week New York 2012 marks the 25th year the city has celebrated the nation's sea services. This year, the seven-day event coincides with the commemoration of the Bicentennial of the War of 1812 and will host more than 6,000 service-members from the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard team in addition to coalition ships from around the world.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ride To Remember for Keith

Helping build a brighter future for our

Police, Fire & EMS Family!

The America's 9/11 Ride is about

Remembering the Heroes, Volunteers and Victims

who lost their lives on September 11, 2001 and since.

(Our Annual Memorial Ride takes place in August respecting each site and the survivors, allowing them to mourn during September)

Team 8001 – Remembering Keith
We are riding in this year’s 2012 America's 9/11 Ride to honor our brother Lt. Keith Fairben, NYP EMT-P!

For each member of New York Chapter 43 of the Red Knights, participation in this memorial event has always been a moving experience and supporting the cause is our honor. Not only are we privileged to be saying “Thank You” to our First Responders, we are rising to honor our own hero Lt. Keith G. Fairben.

Keith was on duty as a paramedic for New York Presbyterian Hospital on the morning of 9/11/01 and was one of the very first units to arrive that morning at the scene. He and his partner Mario Santoro were instrumental in assisting quite a few people escape from the towers that morning and they both lost their lives valiantly working to bring another person to safety.

The riders from New York Chapter 43 of the Red Knights are looking to honor Keith’s memory by raising $15,000 for this year’s event. We trust and hope that you will consider being as generous as possible in helping our chapter achieve this goal.

All donations are tax deductible as the foundation is a 501(c)3 charity.

Please support us as we ride to remember and honor our fallen brother.

Many of our members have been participating on this event for many years without soliciting donations or asking for sponsorships. This year, we decided to band our resources and raise some funds to honor the Heroes and Victims from the terrible attacks on this great county on 9/11 and to help raise funds for a great organization.

I know you get asked to donate to many worthwhile causes but the America’s 911 Foundation is very special. Every dollar does make a difference, the foundation has no paid staff or board, it is entirely run by volunteers. The last audit shows that more than 90% of funds received are utilized supporting First Responders, their departments and families. Funds from this event go to our college scholarship program for graduating seniors of First Responders (Paid or Volunteer). It also provides equipment to First Responder Departments and funds National Volunteer Emergency Team (NVET) abilities. Please help me assist in this wonderful cause. Donating online is safe, secure and easy. The foundation will send you a receipt for your generosity.

Thank you in advance for your generosity!


The Members of New York Chapter 43
Red Knights International MC

For more information: America's 911 Foundation

Afghanistan through a Ryan Crocker lens

With news that Crocker - US Ambassador to Afghanistan - will be stepping down in the next few months, comes this:

Ryan Crocker’s Afghanistan: Mission Impossible
May 22, 2012

A one-of-a-kind U.S. diplomat says he’s leaving Afghanistan. Ron Moreau on what the ambassador achieved and how hard he will be to replace.

n late 2001, shortly after the Taliban’s collapse, a young, relatively unknown Pashtun tribal leader was named as interim leader of Afghanistan by an international conference at Bonn, Germany. Just 10 days later, one of America’s top troubleshooting diplomats landed in Kabul. It would be his job to reopen the U.S. Embassy, which had been shuttered since 1989. But Ryan Crocker’s other job in the Afghan capital would be even more important: to work closely with President Hamid Karzai, whose main qualification for the job was that unlike practically every other potential Afghan leader, he didn’t have blood on his hands from the country’s interminable civil wars. “We were together every day for the four months I was here,” Crocker told The Daily Beast earlier this year in the heavily guarded American Embassy earlier this year. “And every single conversation we had would have the phrase ‘What the hell do we do now?’”

President Obama and the State Department must be asking the same question right now. Crocker has announced that he’s preparing to leave Kabul, returning to retirement a full year before his latest two-year posting was to end. Replacing one of the State Department’s most talented diplomats won’t be easy, not only because Crocker has an intimate and encyclopedic knowledge of the region, but also because he managed to establish a close rapport with the famously difficult, mercurial, and irascible Afghan president.

Crocker and Karzai bonded in early 2002 while they tried to figure out their next moves in a country that had been devastated by three decades of war and five years of Taliban misrule. And that decade-old friendship served them well after President Obama cajoled Crocker to come out of retirement last summer, leave his cushy position as dean of the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University, and return to Kabul. A sense of patriotism and mission forced Crocker to accept Obama’s can’t-refuse offer...

Interesting article. Go read the rest here.

Wednesday Hero

Companions For Heroes
Companions For Heroes

This week, Wednesday Hero is profiling another great nonprofit organization called Companions For Heroes(formerly Pets 2 Vets or P2V). C4H rescues animals from shelters and pairs them with service members, police, firefighters and first responders suffering from physical wounds as well as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). All free of charge. Head over and check them out and make a donation, if you're able to, volunteer your time or you can let them know of a hero who's in need of their help.

You can "Like" them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives just so others may get to enjoy freedom. For that I am proud to call them Hero.
Those Who Say That We're In A Time When There Are No Heroes, They Just Don't Know Where To Look

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

I Am a Veteran, NOT a Victim

In the last while, I have discovered another great blog written by an American Veteran. He's a Combat Medic, too! The title above comes from one of his recent posts, and every civilian needs to read it:

May 17, 2012

You know, I don't know what is worse about being a Veteran, the idea that people pity me, or that they fear me. Neither is appropriate, and yet I get both, sometimes from the same person when I admit to being a Veteran. I can deal with being thanked, its awkward, because I really don't think I've done anything more than any EMT, Fireman or Policeman, but even with my usual flippant reply "Don't thank me thank my recruiter", I always make sure to leave the citizen with the impression that it is appreciated.

But how am I supposed to respond to questions about Post Traumatic Stress? PTSD has become so much of a catch phrase that the VA and AMEDD are actually thinking of changing the terminology. Doesn't matter what they call it, I saw friends, in some cases good friends, killed, or wounded. It wasn't like a John Wayne movie where they clutch their gut and fall over. It was more graphic, more painful to watch, and more gut wrenching to keep my whits and treat them. This is usually the point that someone will say "I could never do that". Yes you could. I did it, so can you....

This IS a MUST READ here.

Yes, I have added his site to my blogroll and suggest that YOU make a point of checking in with him often.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

National EMS Week May 20 - May 26 2012

Yes, okay, for those who don't know, I do have a soft spot for certain EMS 'peeps'. Whaaaaat? A huge part of that is respect and gratitude for all they each do:

May 16, 2012 by

FDNY EMS members always say their career is not a choice, it is a calling. And the 2012 EMS Week poster, unveiled at EMS Station 32 on May 16, demonstrates their passion for the job.

The FDNY-developed poster, which features Rescue Paramedic Don Faeth (a 25-year veteran of EMS), is in the style of a blockbuster film advertisement and carries the slogan: "More than a job. A calling."

History of EMS Week

The American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) was instrumental in establishing EMS Week when President Gerald Ford declared November 3 – 10, 1974 as the first “National Emergency Medical Services Week.” This annual observance continued for four more years and was then reinstituted by ACEP in 1982. Around this time the observance of EMS Week was moved to September. In 1992 EMS Week was again moved to be the 3rd week in May. The move was made to separate EMS Week from Fire Prevention week in October. The rationale for the move was the majority of fire and EMS services felt having the two events back to back hurt the effectiveness of each program so EMS Week was moved to May.

My thanks to ALL EMS, past and present.

(H/T Sal)

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Armed Forces Day 2012

May 15, 2012 by

President Harry S. Truman led the effort to establish a single holiday for citizens to come together and thank our military members for their patriotic service in support of our country. On August 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force Days. The single day celebration stemmed from the unification of the Armed Forces under the Department of Defense. Armed Forces Day is observed on the third Saturday of May.

Land of the Free, because of the Brave! Thank YOU!!!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Taliban transfer ban threatens UK exit

May 17, 2012 by

*Some viewers might find the details in this report distressing*

British troops are being banned from transferring suspected Taliban prisoners over to the Afghan authorities because of claims of torture by local forces.

The ban on handing captives to the National Directorate of Security (NDS) could throw the transfer of security to Afghan forces -- a key component of Britain's exit strategy - into disarray.

British forces must release detainees after 96 hours, although they can extend it to 30 days with ministerial approval.

Allegations that the NDS operated an underground interrogation chamber near the British headquarters in Lashkar Gah and that "torture was entrenched" in the organisation were put before the High Court yesterday.

Mr Justice Collins gave leave for two cases to seek a judicial review into the transfer of prisoners as well as the involvement of the NDS in British interrogations. He was also made aware of the ban on prisoner transfers.

He said: "If our troops are attacked by the Taliban insurgents and there is the capture of some rather than being killed, then after 96 hours they have to go free. That is a somewhat worrying situation to say the least."

But he said an equally serious issue was that the UK could not be seen to be complicit in torture or mistreatment.

One of the cases brought before the court is that of Serdar Mohamed -- a farmer -- who says he was abused after being arrested by the British following a firefight and held for three months.

He claims he was transferred to the NDS in Lashkar Gah and then on to Kabul where he was beaten, hung by handcuffs from bars and hit by guards when he fell asleep until he gave a false confession.

His lawyers say he was later given a 16-year jail sentence in a trial that lasted just 15 minutes in a language he did not understand. His sentence has since been cut to six years and he is appealing against his conviction.

Prisoner transfers to the NDS in Kabul were banned by The Divisional Court two years ago because of claims of systematic abuse. But prisoners were still allowed to be sent to its facility in Lashkar Gah, provided they were not sent on to Kabul.

A Ministry of Defence spokesperson said: "Detention operations are an important part of our force protection measures protecting our people, our allies and partners, and the Afghan civilian population. They also directly contribute to the success of the NATO ISAF mission in Afghanistan and ultimately to UK national security.

"In response to a recent UK inspection there is a temporary hold on transfers while we assure ourselves that UK detainees are not at risk of serious mistreatment or torture."

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Best Buy and CAIR

From Stop Radical Islam:

Why Is Best Buy's Support of CAIR Such a Big Deal?

by: Ryan Mauro

A former Marine who served in Beirut in 1982-1983 and Iraq in 2003 looks into the camera and declares, “On behalf of myself and my family, we will no longer conduct business at Best Buy.” He cuts his card in half. The Marine joined over 8,000 others who have signed a petition to boycott Best Buy over the company’s financial support for the Minnesota branch of Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group tied to the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas.

The federal government designated CAIR as an “unindicted co-conspirator” in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation, a charity discovered to be a front for Hamas. CAIR’s name appears on a list of entities belonging to the Muslim Brotherhood’s secret “Palestine Committee” set up in the U.S. to support Hamas. The FBI subsequently ended its use of CAIR as a liaison to the Muslim community. CAIR lost its fight to have the designation lifted in 2009 when it was ruled that there was “ample evidence” connecting CAIR to Hamas.

On January 23, the Facebook page of CAIR’s Minnesota chapter announced that Best Buy had become a “Platinum Sponsor” of its annual banquet to be held on February 11. CAIR says the event sold out with nearly 350 attendees. The keynote speaker was Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf of “Ground Zero Mosque” fame. The Master of Ceremonies was Hussein Khatib, a former official with the Holy Land Foundation who is also designated as an “unindicted co-conspirator.” His name appears on a list of those who “are and/or were a part of the HAMAS’ social infrastructure in Israel and the Palestinian territories.” He is also on the National Board of American Muslims for Palestine.

The controversy started when Marc J. Fink reported on the issue at on April 19. Best Buy chose to react, not by admitting fault, but by inferring that the criticism is motivated by intolerance....

There is MUCH more... and it ends with this:

CAIR and its Islamist allies are swinging hard, especially at government agencies involved in counter-terrorism. The Muslim Brotherhood, shockingly, is viewed as a “moderate” force by the current government. The boycott of Best Buy is an opportunity for people to make a real difference. Let’s not pass it up. Sign the petition and send it to your friends, family, and colleagues.

Go HERE to read the rest of this one.

Pay attention, America.

Army Leaders Order System-wide Review of Behavioral Health Care

From the DoD:

Secretary of the Army John McHugh and Chief of Staff Raymond T. Odierno announced today the start of a comprehensive, Army-wide review of soldier behavioral health diagnoses and evaluations.

“We owe it to every soldier to ensure that he or she receives the care they need and deserve,” said McHugh. “Just as our behavioral health professionals are committed to providing the best possible care, we, too, must ensure that our processes and procedures are thorough, fair and conducted in accordance with appropriate, consistent medical standards.”

The announcement comes following revelations that some soldiers diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) had that finding rejected during a subsequent evaluation at the Madigan Army Medical Center near Tacoma, Wash. The Army is currently reviewing those cases and, in some instances, determined that the original PTSD diagnoses were more accurate. The Army will now review diagnoses and evaluations made at its remaining medical facilities. Such diagnoses are the first step in a soldier’s evaluation for disability benefits. [emphasis mine]

“In addition to reviewing behavioral health diagnoses, we will develop a detailed action plan to identify, analyze and, if needed, correct behavioral health policy, procedure or programmatic issues in the Army’s implementation of these vital systems,” said Odierno.

McHugh and Odierno said that the effort will be led by their respective deputies, Undersecretary of the Army Joseph Westphal and Vice Chief of Staff Lloyd Austin. “Secretary Westphal and General Austin have the experience, leadership and know-how to find any problems, and fix them quickly,” they said. “Reviewing our processes and policies will ensure that we apply an appropriate standard at every installation -- one that is influenced only by the opinion and expertise of our medical professionals.”

Sergeant Major of the Army Raymond Chandler will serve as special advisor to the effort. “If a soldier is wounded in the arm or the leg, we know what we need to do to treat their wound and get them the care and treatment they need,” Chandler said. “PTSD isn’t something you can see, often making it harder to detect.”

“These challenges require us to strengthen our efforts,” McHugh said. “And that starts with the correct evaluation and proper medical diagnoses.”

(c) DoD

File under "Duh!": Young undocumented immigrants in U.S. face ... difficult futures

I know, is about stating the obvious, but from Homeland Security NewsWire comes this:

17 May 2012

Undocumented Latino youth who migrate to the United States face futures clouded by limited rights and the constant fear of deportation, a new study from the University of Chicago and the University of California, Irvine finds; “Rites of passage common to American youth — getting a driver’s license, traveling, working and applying to college — are either denied, unattainable or dangerous to pursue for undocumented immigrants,” said one of the authors of the study.

Many do not fully realize the constraints of their status until they become older teenagers and young adults, the report finds. “Rites of passage common to American youth — getting a driver’s license, traveling, working and applying to college — are either denied, unattainable or dangerous to pursue for undocumented immigrants,” said Leo Chavez, professor of anthropology at University of California, Irvine....

I wonder how much this "study" cost? Another question: WHO did they interview for this "study"?

Read the rest of this report here.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Military Cross for UK Royal Navy Medic

From the BBC:

Military Cross for Royal Navy medic Liam O'Grady

Liam O'Grady with his Military Cross
Medical Assistant Liam O'Grady ignored shrapnel wounds to his leg and face to help his patrol sergeant and three other wounded soldiers

A Devonport-based Royal Navy medic has been awarded the Military Cross for his bravery in Afghanistan.

Liam O'Grady saved the lives of four colleagues after a grenade attack, despite being wounded with shrapnel himself.

The 22-year-old medical assistant, who lives in Plymouth, was presented with his medal by Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace.

"I told him it was a job that needed to be done, so I did it," MA O'Grady said. [Yes, emphasis mine]

The HMS Sutherland medic was attached to an Army patrol in the Upper Gereshk Valley last year when the attack happened....

Read the rest of this absolutely heroic story here.

Wednesday Hero

This Weeks Post Was Suggested By Michael

PhM2 William David Halyburton, Jr.
PhM2 William David Halyburton, Jr.
20 years old from Wilimington, North Carolina
2nd Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division
August 2, 1924 - May 10, 1945
U.S. Navy

Pharmacist's Mate Second Class William Halyburton lost his life in Okinawa, Japan when his unit was under heavy fire and he ran, without thought of his own safety, to help a fallen Marine. As he was shielding the Marine's body with his own, while administering aid, PhM2 Halyburton was mortally wounded. For his actions on that day he was posthumously awarded the Medal Of Honor:

The President of the United States of America, in the name of Congress, takes pride in presenting the Medal of Honor (Posthumously) to Pharmacist's Mate Second Class William David Halyburton, Jr., United States Naval Reserve, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as a Medical Corpsman with a Marine Rifle Company in the SECOND Battalion, Fifth Marines, FIRST Marine Division, during action against enemy Japanese forces on Okinawa Shima in the Ryukyu Chain, on 10 May 1945. Undaunted by the deadly accuracy of Japanese counterfire as his unit pushed the attack through a strategically important draw, Pharmacist's Mate Second Class Halyburton unhesitatingly dashed across the draw and up the hill into an open fire-swept field where the company advance squad was suddenly pinned down under a terrific concentration of mortar, machinegun and sniper fire with resultant severe casualties. Moving steadily forward despite the enemy's merciless barrage, he reached the wounded Marine who lay farthest away and was rendering first aid when his patient was struck for the second time by a Japanese bullet. Instantly placing himself in the direct line of fire, he shielded the fallen fighter with his own body and staunchly continued his ministrations although constantly menaced by the slashing fury of shrapnel and bullets falling on all sides. Alert, determined and completely unselfish in his concern for the helpless Marine, he persevered in his efforts until he himself sustained mortal wounds and collapsed, heroically sacrificing himself that his comrade might live. By his outstanding valor and unwavering devotion to duty in the face of tremendous odds, Pharmacist's Mate Second Class Halyburton sustained and enhanced the highest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country.

He was also honored with a guided missile frigate, the USS Halyburton, being named after him.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives just so others may get to enjoy freedom. For that I am proud to call them Hero.
Those Who Say That We're In A Time When There Are No Heroes, They Just Don't Know Where To Look

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Farah's Children

Children gather as members of Provincial Reconstruction Team Farah pull security during a mission in Farah City in Afghanistan's Farah province, May 12, 2012.

(c) DoD

Wales: Primary teacher suspended for ties to Islamic extremist group

From JihadWatch:

Of course, this always happens. Primary school teachers are constantly getting arrested for ties to terror groups. To single out Sadia Malik would be "Islamophobic."

"Teacher Sadia Malik Suspended From Cardiff Primary School Over Islamist Extremist Links," by Lucy Sherriff for The Huffington Post UK, May 13 (thanks to Twostellas):

A special needs teacher at a primary school has been suspended over links to an Islamic extremist group.

Sadia Malik, a special education needs (SEN) coordinator at Cardiff Muslim primary school in Wales has been accused of "actively" promoting a banned hate group in the country's capital. According to the Sunday Times newspaper, which has accessed a confidential police report, Malik was present at a meeting organised by the Supporters of Tawheed group in January....

Do you know what your kids are learning in school today? Read the rest (and the comments) of this one here.

Lieberman: [Taleban] not interested in genuine peace talks

Lieberman and King say out loud what we have all known for months.

From National Journal:

Congressional Homeland Security Leaders Pessimistic on Afghanistan

May 13, 2012

In the wake of news that an Afghan peacemaker was killed in Kabul on Sunday, top lawmakers on Congressional homeland security panels struck a pessimistic tone about the U.S. mission in Afghanistan, warning that the Taliban is clearly not interested in negotiation.

“They're not interested in genuine peace talks,” said Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, on CNN’s State of the Union. “I mean, we have been reintegrating lower-level Taliban who have come back over to the side of the Afghan national security forces over the last couple of years, but the people at the top of the Taliban, in my opinion, are not interested in reconciliation.” [emphasis mine]

Lieberman said that this and other incidents have made it “obvious they don’t want peace right now,” but insisted the only way to get the Taliban to honestly engage in peace talks is to “continue to put pressure” on the organization.

Lieberman’s counterpart in the House, Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., struck the same pessimistic tone and worried that the set date for withdrawal from Afghanistan was hurting the U.S. effort.

“Quite frankly, I think we should not be giving these target dates for getting out, but apparently that is set now,” he said. “It just shows again how tough Afghanistan is, that we shouldn't be leaving prematurely, and there's a lot of work on the ground that has to be done, and it's a very dangerous place in the world.”..

Read the rest here.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Some Gave All: Cpl Brent John McCarthy and LCpl Lee Thomas Davies

Corporal Brent John McCarthy and Lance Corporal Lee Thomas Davies killed in Afghanistan

A Military Operations news article

14 May 12

It is with sadness that the Ministry of Defence must confirm that Corporal Brent John McCarthy, from the Royal Air Force, and Lance Corporal Lee Thomas Davies, from the 1st Battalion Welsh Guards, were killed in Afghanistan on Saturday 12 May 2012.

Corporal Brent John McCarthy, Royal Air Force, and Lance Corporal Lee Thomas Davies, 1st Battalion Welsh Guards [Pictures: via MOD]

Corporal McCarthy and Lance Corporal Davies were killed by small arms fire while deployed as part of a Police Advisory Team to attend a meeting at the local Afghan Uniform Police headquarters near Patrol Base Attal in the Lashkar Gah district of Helmand province.

Their commanding officer was attending the meeting while Corporal McCarthy and Lance Corporal Davies and the remainder of the team were providing security.


Corporal Brent John McCarthy

Corporal McCarthy was born into a Service family on 18 February 1987 in Hannover Germany. At a very young age he returned to the Midlands of England where he attended Lilleshall Primary School and Orleton Park School in nearby Wellington. He was staunchly proud of the area and apart from the early years of his life, Priorslee, Telford was where he called home.

Following school he worked in a number of jobs before committing himself to a Service life with the Royal Air Force in August 2008. Following his training at RAF Halton and the Defence College of Policing and Guarding at Southwick Park he began his career within the Royal Air Force Police. He was a man of many talents and diverse interests including football, playing drums in a band and representing the RAF at hockey.

He was assigned to RAF Brize Norton in July 2009 where he volunteered to deploy with 174 Provost Company, 3rd Regiment Royal Military Police as part of the Theatre Provost Group. During his pre-deployment training Corporal McCarthy showed an aptitude for mentoring and was a natural choice to embed with the Welsh Guards as part of the Police Mentoring Advisory Group.

Corporal McCarthy leaves behind his father John, mother Sarah, sister Jodie, his partner Sarah and his niece Miajay and nephew Kyron.

Corporal McCarthy's family have paid the following tribute:

"Brent was a loving sensitive young man. He excelled at sport and had the whole world in front of him. He loved his family dearly and will always be a hero to his niece Miajay. Brent will be sadly missed not only by us but also by his loving partner Sarah and her devoted family. Life will never be the same for any of us. We will love you always. God bless."...


Lance Corporal Lee Thomas Davies

Lance Corporal Davies deployed to Afghanistan on 21 March 2012 as part of a Police Advisory Team within the Police Mentoring and Advisory Group. He was based in Patrol Base Attal in the Lashkar Gah District of Helmand Province.

Lance Corporal Davies was born on 15 October 1984 in Carmarthen. After school he was self employed before starting his career at the Infantry Training Centre Catterick in October 2009. He successfully passed out from Catterick in April 2010, joining the Welsh Guards.

On 10 May 2010 he was posted to 1st Battalion Welsh Guards at Lille Barracks in Aldershot. During his time in the Battalion he quickly stood out as a natural leader and he was selected to attend the Lance Corporal promotion cadre, subsequently promoting in December 2011.

Lance Corporal Davies was an exemplary member of the Welsh Guards. He was an extremely popular and respected member of his company and platoon. A gifted junior non-commissioned officer, he had earned the respect of all he worked with.

Lance Corporal Davies had a bright future ahead of him - his professionalism, leadership and unswerving sense of duty would have carried him far. He will, justly, be remembered among the ranks of the bravest of the brave.

The family are devastated at the loss of Lee and wish to be left alone to grieve at this time.

Lieutenant Colonel Dino Bossi, Commanding Officer, 1st Battalion Welsh Guards, said:

"Lance Corporal Lee Davies loved being a soldier - it was who he was. He passed out from the Infantry Training Centre Catterick in April 2010. He swiftly made a name for himself for his enthusiasm, fitness and professionalism as an infantry soldier and in less than two years was promoted to the rank of Lance Corporal.

"To have made such a profound impact so early in his Army career speaks volumes about the quality of the man we have lost today. Lance Corporal Davies was very much the up and coming Junior Non-Commissioned Officer; he had big plans and the personal qualities to make his ambitions a reality. He was a sports fanatic, both watching and playing and would throw himself into any outdoor activity.

"His passion for motor-sports would see him up until all hours to watch a rally or a grand prix. In his personal life Lance Corporal Davies was a live wire who enjoyed nothing more than a night on the town. He was the living embodiment of the Army's work hard, play hard ethos.

"On duty he was a consummate professional; whether 'strutting his stuff' on public duties in London or on operations here in Afghanistan. It is in Afghanistan that the depths of his talents became obvious to all.

"He was a formidably talented team commander, in his element in this complex and unforgiving environment. The Welsh Guards have lost a man of inestimable promise, a fine Guardsman who lived and breathed the values and standards of the Foot Guards. He will be missed by all of us. Our thoughts and sympathies go out to his family."...

Go here, spend time and learn how these Fallen Heroes lived, in the words of those who know and love them the best.

Always remembered. Always honoured.