Medevacs are truly remarkable — they fly directly into dangerous areas unarmed, taking great risks. Just a few days ago, Charlie Company — “Unarmed and Unafraid” — lost one of its medics on the battlefield.
Staff Sergeant Robert Cowdrey, 39, was killed on October 13 in the middle of a mission evacuating wounded troops from Observation Post Shal, in Kunar Province. The post — on a mountaintop –was under fire, with strong winds and a small helicopter landing zone. It was night and very challenging to land the craft, which there was only room to partly do, with the front two wheels. As Cowdrey attempted to help evacuate a third wounded US soldier, the blade of the Black Hawk hit Cowdrey’s helmet. Cowdrey had a wife and three sons.
We’ve been embedded with Charlie Company for a few days for our spot, which will focus on Charlie Company’s commander, Major Graham Bundy and medic Staff Sergeant Erin Gibson, a 4’11″ spitfire her colleagues call “Mini-Medic.”
On Saturday an IED detonated on an Afghan Border Police foot patrol in Gowardesh, near the Pakistan border. Two Afghan Border Police were killed and four were wounded. The ABP brought the wounded to Forward Operating Base Bostick, in Kunar Province, where they were treated and then Medevaced to Jalalabad.