How you can remember the 36 Alabama heroes lost in the War in Afghanistan

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memorial of Alabama veterans
Alabama Veterans Memorial Park Hall of Honor honors the lives of Alabama’s fallen. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

As the 20-year War in Afghanistan comes to a close, we’d like to take time to remember the servicemen and women that gave their lives in the line of duty. 36 of the 2,400+ U.S. Military deaths during the War in Afghanistan were Alabamians. Keep reading to learn about these heroes.

The first to sacrifice

US flag with the silhouette of a soldier representing fallen Alabama veterans
We continue to honor Alabama’s lost heroes. Photo via wnep.com

Since the War in Afghanistan began in 2001, over 2,400 American servicemen and women have laid down their lives in the line of duty. One of those lives was that of Mike Spann. Johnny Michael “Mike” Spann of Winfield, AL was the first American to lose his life during the War in Afghanistan. His youngest child Jake who was only six months at the time of his death is now 20 and his daughters Allison and Emily (both young children that fateful day in 2001) are now adults.

The lives of Spann’s family (like many others) were forever changed the day he left for Afghanistan. Today, we want to honor the lives of the many Alabamians who gave their lives.

Recently, Governor Kay Ivey stated,

“Over the past 20 years, 36 of Alabama’s own have lost their life protecting our freedoms. Their service was not in vain, and we stand behind them 100 percent. I support every man and woman who has served in our military, the Alabama National Guard and the numerous diplomatic posts. They all served as a force of good in the world. In the days ahead, let’s pray for our country, the men and women left behind and the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan”

Governor Kay Ivey

Remembering the fallen Alabama heroes

Memorial Day 2017 Alabama
Thomas Rivers was one of the many to sacrifice his life. Photo via Pat Byington for Bham Now

These are the Alabama heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice (listed by name, rank, age, hometown and date of death).

2001

  • CIA Agent Johnny M. Spann, 32, Winfield, Nov. 25, 2001

2003

  • Army CW3 Mark S. O’Steen, 43, Ozark, AL Jan. 30, 2003

2007

  • Army SGT Brandon E. Hadaway, 25, Valley, May 30, 2007
  • Marine LTC Michael A. Robinson, 42, Sylacauga, June 1, 2007

2008

  • Army CW4 James Carter, 42, Montgomery, June 5, 2008
  • Army SPC Seteria L. Brown, 22, Aliceville, July 25, 2008
  • Army SPC Marques I. Knight, 24, Dothan, September 6, 2008

2009

  • Army SGT Joshua L. Rath, 22, Decatur, Jan. 8, 2009
  • Army SGT Carlie M. Lee III, 23, Birmingham, May 15, 2009
  • Air Force Lt. Col. Mark E. Stratton II, 39, Foley, May 26, 2009
  • Army SSG Jeffrey A. Hall, 28, Huntsville, June 1, 2009
  • Army MAJ Kevin M. Jenrette, 37, Auburn, June 4, 2009
  • Army SGT Ricky D. Jones, 26, Plantersville, June 21, 2009
  • Army CPT Ronal G. Luce Jr., 27, Birmingham, Aug. 2, 2009
  • Army SGT Jerry R. Evans Jr., 23, Eufaula, Aug. 7, 2009
  • Marine LCpl Bruce E. Ferrell Jr., 21, Perdido, Aug. 10, 2009
  • Army SGT Robert D. Gordon II, 22, River Falls, Sept. 16, 2009

2010

  • Marine LCpl Thomas E. Rivers Jr., 22, Hoover, April 28, 2010
  • Army CPT Kyle A. Comfort, 27, Jacksonville, May 8, 2010
  • Army SPC Brendan P. Neenan, 21, Enterprise, June 7, 2010
  • Air Force SSG David C. Smith, 26, Eight Mile June 9, 2010
  • Army SPC Andrew L. Hand, 25, Enterprise, July 24, 2010
  • Air Force Sr. Airman Mark A. Forester, 29, Haleyville, Sept. 29, 2010
  • Marine SSG Stacy A. Green, 34, Alexander City, Dec. 10, 2010

2011

  • Marine Cpl. Joseph C. Whitehead, 22, Axis, Jan. 1, 2011
  • Army Spc. Joshua T. Lancaster, 22, Millbrook, Jan. 19, 2011
  • Air Force Major Jeffrey O. Ausborn, 41, Hokes Bluff, April 27, 2011
  • Army Sgt. Christopher R. Bell, 21, Red Bay, June 4, 2011
  • Army Spc. Nicholas Hensley, 28, Prattville, June 24, 201
  • ALARNG Capt. Waid C. Ramsey, 41, Red Bay, Aug. 4, 2011
  • Army SSG Michael W. Hosey, 27, Trussville, Sept. 17, 2011
  • Marine LCpl Jason N. Barfield, 22, Ashford, Oct. 24, 2011

2012

  • Army SGT James L. Skalberg, 25, Cullman, June 27, 2012
  • Army PFC Julian L. Colvin, 21, Birmingham, July 22, 2012

2013

  • Army PFC Errol D.A. Milliard, 18, Birmingham, July 4, 2013

2015

  • Air Force SSG Forrest B. Sibley, 31, Oneonta, Aug. 15, 2015

List via AL.com, compiled by Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs with information from the U.S. Department of Defense and Governor Ivey’s office.

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Katiana Banks
Marvel-loving, cardio-hating senior at UAB. ✨
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