Photo courtesy of USMC. January 28, 2011 Cpl Gilliam receives Purple Heart from the Commandant of the USMC, GEN James Amos.
A note and a request from the boys of 3/5...please consider sending a card or note.
On January 5, 2011, our 25 year old Farrell stepped on an IED while on a dismounted patrol with his unit, (3/5 Marines, Lima Co.) in the Sangin District, Helmand Province, Afghanistan. He suffered many catastrophic injuries, including the amputation of both legs above the knee and several open fractures of his right arm including a 6 inch segment that is missing bone and tissue. His worst injury however was to the right side of his chest and abdomen, which took the full impact of the explosion, and left him completely eviscerated as a result of the blast.
With the help of Hospital Corpsman HM3 Brown, HM3 Gojar, Cpl Griff, and Lcpl Gutierrez, lifesaving measures were immediately undertaken to stop his bleeding in the field. He fought for his life in the back of the Marine transport truck which raced him back to camp. He fought for his life as he was Medi-Vac'd from base camp to a hospital in Kandahar where he underwent 9 hours of damage control surgery. He fought for his life as he was medi-vac'd again to Bagram Hospital in Afghanistan, where he underwent further damage control surgery. He fought for his life as he was flown to Landsthul Germany, where he underwent further surgery and again as he was flown to the US, arriving state side, on Janury 9, 2011 at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda Maryland (outside Washington DC), with trips to the OR continuing every other day since then. But Farrell is a fighter! The Doctors have said that to survive an abdominal wound like his is one in ten million - they rarely see them because nobody ever survives them.
We are sad to say that earlier this week Farrell succumbed to further injuries from which he did not recover. We pray for the family and ask for God's peace. We also pray for the brothers and sisters left behind. You know who you are!! Pick up the sword - be the heart, be the love and be the voice. As long as you stick together and remain as one nothing can beat you! You will make a difference!!
LETTERS OF CONDOLENCE TO FARRELL GILLIAMS FAMILY - For anyone who is interested in sending a private letter or card of condolence, peace and well wishes. Please mail them to the following address and we will make sure they get to the family. Semper Fi!
The Farrell Gilliam Family c/o The Honor Group 3555 Taylor Road, Suite C Loomis, Ca. 95650
Former Paratrooper and Army Officer, "Blackfive" started this blog upon learning of the valorous sacrifice of a friend that was not reported by the journalist whose life he saved. Email: blackfive AT gmail DOT com
Retired Special Operations Master Sergeant, Jim Hanson ("Uncle Jimbo") is now focused on writing about the military, politics, intelligence operations and foreign policy. Email: jimbo AT unclejimbo DOT com
Writer, photographer, and raconteur C. Blake Powers is the Laughing Wolf. He is independent in politics and covers topics including journalism, military, weapons, preparedness, space, science, cooking, food and wine, product and book reviews, and even spirituality. Email: wolf1 AT laughingwolf DOT net Laughing Wolf's Amazon Wish List
Bill Paisley, otherwise known as Pinch, is a 22 year (ongoing) active and
reserve naval aviator. He blogs over at www.instapinch.com on a veritable
cornucopia of various and sundry items and will bring a tactical naval
aviator's perspective to Blackfive. Readers be warned: any comments of or
about the F-14 Tomcat will be reverential and spoken in low, hushed tones.
Email: wpaisley AT comcast DOT net
Mr. Wolf has over 26 years in the Army, Army NG, and USAR. He’s Airborne with 5 years as an NCO, before becoming an officer. Mr. Wolf has had 4 company commands. Signal Corp is his basic branch, and Public Affairs is his functional area. He recently served 22 straight months in Kuwait and Iraq, in Intel, PA, and senior staff of MNF-I. Mr. Wolf is now an IT executive. He is currently working on a book on media and the Iraq war. Functional gearhead.
In Iraq, he received the moniker of Mr. Wolf after the Harvey Kietel character in Pulp Fiction, when "challenges" arose, they called on Mr. Wolf...
Email: TheDOTMrDOTWolfAT gmail DOT com
Deebow is a Staff Sergeant and a Military Police Squad Leader in the Army National Guard. In a previous life, he served in the US Navy. He has over 19 years of experience in both the Maritime and Land Warfare; including deployments to Southwest Asia, Thailand, the South Pacific, South America and Egypt. He has served as a Military Police Team Leader and Protective Services Team Leader and he has served on assignments with the US State Department, US Air Force Security Police, US Army Criminal Investigation Division, and the US Drug Enforcement Administration. He recently spent time in Afghanistan working with, training and fighting alongside Afghan Soldiers and is now focused on putting his 4 year Political Science degree to work by writing about foreign policy, military security policy and politics.
McQ has 28 years active and reserve service. Retired. Infantry officer. Airborne and Ranger. Consider my 3 years with the 82nd as the most fun I ever had with my clothes on. Interests include military issues and policy and veteran's affairs.
Email: mcq51 -at - bellsouth -dot- net
Tantor is a former USAF navigator/weapon system officer (WSO) in F-4E Phantoms who served in the US, Asia, and Europe. He is now a curmudgeonly computer geek in Washington, DC, picking the taxpayers pocket. His avocations are current events, aviation, history, and conservative politics.
Twenty-three years of Active and Reserve service in the US Army in SF (18B), Infantry and SOF Signal jobs with operational deployments to Bosnia and Africa. Since retiring he's worked as Senior Defense Analyst on SOF and Irregular Warfare projects and currently ensconced in the emerging world of Cyberspace.
Major Pain --
A Marine who began his blog in Iraq and reflects back on what he learned there and in Afghanistan. To the point opinions, ideas and thoughts on military, political and the media from One Marine’s View. Email: onemarinesview AT yahoo DOT com
Uber Pig was an Infantryman from late 1991 until early 1996, serving with Second Ranger Battalion, I Corps, and then 25th Infantry Division. At the time, the Army discriminated against enlisted soldiers who wanted use the "Green to Gold" program to become officers, so he left to attend Stanford University. There, he became expert in detecting, avoiding, and surviving L-shaped ambushes, before dropping out to be as entrepreneurial as he could be. He is now the founder of a software startup serving the insurance and construction industries, and splits time between Lake Tahoe, Boonville, and San Francisco, CA.
Uber Pig writes for Blackfive a) because he's the proud brother of an enlisted Civil Affairs Reservist who currently serves in Iraq, b) because he looks unkindly on people who make it harder for the military in general, and for his brother in particular, to succeed at their missions and come home in victory, and c) because the Blackfive readers and commenters help keep him sane.
COB6 spent 24 years in the active duty Army that included 5 combat tours with service in the 1st Ranger Battalion and 1st Special Forces Group . COB6 was enlisted (E-7) and took the OCS route to a commission. COB6 retired a few years back as a field grade Infantry officer.
Currently COB6 has a son in the 82nd Airborne that just returned from his third tour and has a newly commissioned daughter in the 4th Infantry Division.