Last night we heard an amazing story from two gentlemen who were there. They are only speaking up now because what was a tough day but ultimately a victory has been turned into a case where they are portrayed as victims.
The Battle of Wanat was fought right at the end of the 2nd of the 503rd, 173rd Airborne's 14 month tour. The Taliban had begin returning from their safe havens in Pakistan and they came in force. 2nd Platoon of Chosen Company was building a patrol base so that the unit coming to relieve them would have good eyes and ears on their area of operations. They got hit by 200+ Taliban and although they took some serious losses, they held their ground. 9 good men died that day and 27 were wounded including the two we spoke with last night SSG Ryan Pitts (nominated for the Distinguished Service Cross) and SGT Mike Denton (Awarded the Silver Star). Both have since been medically retired due to the injuries they suffered that day. They wanted to discuss the battle and how it has been reported and also to object to the letters of reprimand issued to their Company Commander CPT Matt Meyer and their BN Commander Col Ostlund. Both feel that these officers acted honorably and should not be made scapegoats.
We talked with them for 90 minutes and I would like to thank Twana & Yankee Mom for allowing us to hijack their show. Their story is riveting and should go into the storied history of the Airborne as a hard fought battle and a victory. Godspeed to the men who were lost and who fulfilled the motto Airborne, All the Way.
CPT Myer and COL Ostlund are both appealing their letters of reprimand and the case rests in the hands of the FORSCOM Commander Gen. Campbell. Here is his email of the Deputy Public Affairs Chief. If you write them be polite and let them know that pressure from the media and Congress should not end the careers of two good officers.