Skip to main content

IGTNT Candle Logo
I Got The News Today (IGTNT), which is the oldest continuous series on Daily Kos, provides members of this community a venue to pay their respects to those who have died as a result of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  The IGTNT  title is a reminder that nearly every day the family of an active duty service member receives the terrible news that their beloved has died.
.
Sgt. First Class Roberto C. Skelt
Spc. John A. Pelham
Spc. Christopher A. Landis

Since 2001 we have lost 2312 American troops in Afghanistan and a total of 3423 American and coalition forces.
.

Taps
Performed by the U.S. Army Ceremonial Band

Day is done
Gone the sun
From the lakes
From the hills
From the sky
All is well
Safely rest
God is nigh


.
In what was the first "insider" or "green on blue" attacks in Afghanistan this year, the DoD announced the following casualties:

The Department of Defense announced today the death of two soldiers who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

They died Feb. 12, in Kapisa Province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when they were struck by enemy small arms fire.

Killed were:

Spc. John A. Pelham, 22, of Portland, Ore., and Sgt. First Class Roberto C. Skelt, 41, of York, Fla.

Pelham and Skelt were assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, N.C.   ~ DoD News Release

Photobucket
Sgt. First Class Roberto C. Skelt, 41, or York, Florida, KIA 2/12/14 in Afghanistan.
Sgt. First Class Roberto C. Skelt, 41, of York, Florida
Roberto Skelt enlisted in the Army in October of 1990 as a signal support systems specialist. Sgt. Skelt graduated in 2005 from the Special Forces Qualifications Course as a Special Forces engineer sergeant.  

Sgt Roberto C. Skelt served two tours in Afghanistan and one tour in Yeman before being assigned to the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School  and the 1st Special Warfare Training Group (A) at Fort Bragg, NC. He was just recently reassigned to 3rd SFG (A).

Sgt. First Class Skelt's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal (3rd Oak Leaf Cluster), the Purple Heart, the Meritorious Service Medal (2nd Oak Leaf Cluster), the Army Commendation Medal (2nd Oak Leaf Cluster), the Army Achievement Medal (4th Oak Leaf Cluster), the Army Good Conduct Medal (4th Award), the National Defense Service Medal (2nd Award), the Kosovo Campaign Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with three Campaign Stars, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Korea Defense Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Army Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon (3rd Award), the Overseas Service Ribbon (4th Award), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Medal (2nd Award), the Special Forces Tab, the Combat Infantryman Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

Sgt. Skelt is survived by his wife and two sons, his parents, a brother and two sisters.

~ Source  ~ Source
.
Photobucket
.

Spc. John A. Pelham, 22, of Portland, Oregon, KIA 2/12/14 in Afghanistan.
Spc. John A. Pelham, 22, of Portland, Oregon
John "Alex" Pelham graduated in 2010 from Sunset High School where he was quarterback of the football team, pitcher and third baseman on the baseball team and a member of the school choir.  Alex then attended the College of the Redwoods in Eureka, CA where he played baseball.  

Pelham was named after his grandfather John, an Army colonel and an uncle from the family also served honorably in the armed service so it came as no surprise when in 2011 he enlisted in the Army.  In fact, family members said, "The military was just in his blood".

Spc Pelham was recruited into the Special Forces right out of boot camp.  He served one tour in Afghanistan for six months in 2012 and this was his second tour of duty in a war zone.

Wendall Pelham, John's father said his son always knew he was going to be in the military.  

"I believe he had a phenomenal patriotic sense of being part of something bigger." I don't know if proud begins to articulate it. We have to have warriors out there every day. Because of what he chose to do, I have a son that's a hero."  
Brother-in-law, Corey Lederer described Alex as an all American and one of the most genuinely nice people one could meet.
"He's the type of person you'd love for your daughter to marry. He had a deep sense of family and was committed to doing what's right. If you needed anything, he was the first one to volunteer to help.

He truly loved serving in the military and his country, it was his element. He was an amazing guy. America lost a true hero this week."

Spc. John A. Pelham's awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal, the Joint Service Achievement Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Medal, the Combat Action Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

The family is planning a memorial service in Beaverton, followed by a graveside service at Willamette National Cemetery in Southeast Portland, where Pelham will be buried with full military honors.

~ Source  ~ Source ~ Source

.
Photobucket
.

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Spc. Christopher A. Landis, 27, of Independence, Ky., died Feb. 10, on Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan, from wounds received when the enemy attacked his dismounted patrol with a rocket propelled grenade in Kapisa Province, Afghanistan.  

He was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), Fort Bragg, N.C.  ~ DoD News Release

Spc. Christopher A. Landis, 27, of Independence, Ky, KIA 2/10/14 in Afghanistan.
Spc. Christopher A. Landis, 27, of Independence, Kentucky
Christopher Landis enlisted in the Army in March of 2011.  Following boot camp at Fort Jackson, SC he attended the Defense Language Institute at the Presidio of Monterey, California for Arabic language training.  Upon completion Spc Landis then advanced to  individual training for Cryptologic Linguist at Goodfellow Air Force Base in Texas.

This was Spc Landis' first deployment.

Local reporters state that neighbors had nothing but the highest praise for Christopher and the Landis family.

Independence Mayor, Donna Yeager:

"We are just very saddened to lose any soldier. My heart goes out to the family. We sympathize with them and we will try to get in touch with them to see if there's anything we can do."
All Kenton County office buildings were directed to lower their flags to half staff through the weekend.

Spc. Cristopher A. Landis' awards and decorations include the Purple Heart, the Army Commendation Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal with Campaign Star, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Overseas Service Ribbon, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Medal, the Combat Action Badge, and the Parachutist Badge.

Spc Landis is survived by his parents, two brothers and a sister.

Funeral services were still pending but the family said they would be held at Grace Fellowship Church, in Florence, Kentucky.

~ Source  ~ Source  ~ Source

.
Photobucket
.
About the IGTNT series:

"I Got the News Today" is a diary series intended to honor, respect, and remind us of the sacrifice of our US troops. Click here to see the series, which was begun by i dunno in 2004 and now is maintained by Sandy on Signal, i dunno, noweasels, blue jersey mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, SisTwo, SpamNunn, TrueBlueMajority, CalNM, Wide Awake in Kentucky, maggiejean, Ekaterin, TheFatLadySings, Joy of Fishes, and me, JaxDem.

These diaries are heartbreaking to write, but are an important service to those who have died, and show our community’s respect for them. Diaries about the fallen usually appear two days after their names are officially released, which allows time for the IGTNT team to find and tell their stories.

POW/MIA Banner
POW Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl
Sgt Bowe R. Bergdahl
The only known current Prisoner of War is Sgt. Bowe R. Bergdahl, 27 who was captured by the Taliban in June of 2009. Five propaganda videos featuring Bergdahl have been released by the Taliban. A website has been established with the most up-to-date information on Sgt. Bergdahl.

On January 15, 2014 the military reported they had obtained, but did not release a new video of Sgt Bowe Bergdahl made by his captors.  This video contains a "proof of life" reference for December 14, 2013.  It has been nearly three years since the latest video of Bergdahl and in this one it is reported he appears to be in declining health. Missing U.S. soldier Bowe Bergdahl seen in video.

Please keep good thoughts and prayers for Sgt. Bowe R. Bergdahl.

.
Image Source,Photobucket Uploader Firefox Extension
.
Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service members mentioned here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site