Three Air Force Special Operations Command Airmen died Saturday morning when their aircraft, a coalition CH-47 Chinook, crashed in the Maiden Wardak Province in eastern Afghanistan.
They were among 25 U.S. Special Operations Command operators who died in the crash, which also took the lives of five U.S. Army Reserve Soldiers, seven Afghan commandos and one civilian interpreter.
The Department of Defense announced today the Airmen were pararescuemen Tech. Sgt. Daniel L. Zerbe, Tech. Sgt. John W. Brown, and combat controller Staff Sgt. Andrew W. Harvell. All three Airmen were assigned to the 24th Special Tactics Squadron at Pope Field, N.C.
“This crash leaves us in AFSOC with heavy hearts,” said Lt. Gen. Eric Fiel, AFSOC commander. “My deepest sympathies extend to the families of our fallen brethren and to their teammates. As we remember their sacrifice, we will press on and continue to provide unparalleled air support to our combatant commanders.”
There will be a private memorial for the Airmen at Pope Field tomorrow. There are no details on funeral arrangements at this time. For more information, contact Air Force Special Operations Command Public Affairs at 850-884-5515.