Posted by: annemartinfletcher | August 6, 2011

How to Help a Navy Seal — and Soldier

My prayers go out tonight to the families of the American soldiers recently killed in Afghanistan. The Department of Defense is still investigating the apparent shoot-down of their helicopter, and have not yet released information on the deceased. According to NBC news, 22 of the dead are Navy Seals, 3 are from the Air Force, others from the Army, as well as 7 Afghani Special Forces soldiers.

The Navy Seals (Special Warfare) units are relatively small, and this loss must weigh heavily upon all of them. If you wish to remember them, consider making a donation to the Navy Seal Foundation, whose mission is to provide immediate and ongoing support and assistance to the Naval Special Warfare Community and their families. You can also find them on Facebook.

The Air Force members, I presume, were Combat Control Team (CCT) members. Combat Controllers insert with SEAL teams, and other units, to request, direct and coordinate Air support (suppression fire, medical evacuation, and extraction). It would be typical for one controller to be assigned to each small combat unit of about seven SEALS.

The Army members were most likely the Chinook helicopter’s crew, although there might also have been some ground special forces members.

A civilian reportedly died in the crash. The interpreter’s family will probably receive less support than the families of the military will.

To support the non-SEAL families, I recommend contacting the U.S. Special Operations Command Care Coalition (USSOCOM CARE). Because they are funded by the military, I do not know if they can accept donations–but they might know who can. You can also leave a message on their Facebook page.

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Responses

  1. Quickly reiterate: my information is speculation based on how I know units operate and the national news reports. The DOD has not released any details yet.

  2. Update to my educated guesses: the Air Force released the names of their three, and they were NOT Combat Controllers. One was a “PJ.” Here is the link to the straight scoop: http://www.afsoc.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123267822

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