- NATO Kosovo Force
- Operation Enduring Freedom
- Operation Freedom’s Sentinel
- Operation Inherent Resolve
- Operation Iraqi Freedom
- Operation New Dawn
- Operation Octave Shield
- Operation Odyssey Lightning
- Operation Spartan Shield
- U.S. Africa Command Operations
- U.S. Central Command operations
- The People Behind The Sacrifice
Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matthew G. Wagstaff
Died September 21, 2010 Serving During Operation Enduring Freedom
34, of Orem, Utah; assigned to 5th Battalion, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died Sept. 21 in Qalat, Afghanistan, in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter crash during combat operations. Also killed in the crash were: Army Lt. Col. Robert F. Baldwin, Army Sgt. Marvin R. Calhoun Jr., Lt. (SEAL) Brendan J. Looney, Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonah D. McClellan, Senior Chief Cryptologic Technician (Collection) David B. McLendon, Navy Special Warfare Operator 3rd Class (SEAL) Denis C. Miranda, Army Staff Sgt. Joshua D. Powell, and Navy Special Warfare Operator 2nd Class (SEAL) Adam O. Smith.
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Utah soldier killed in Afghanistan
The Associated Press
SALT LAKE CITY — A Black Hawk helicopter pilot from Orem has been killed in southern Afghanistan.
The Defense Department said 34-year-old Chief Warrant Officer Matthew G. Wagstaff died in a crash that also killed four other members of the 101st Airborne Division, based at Fort Campbell, Ky.
The cause of the crash was not immediately clear. NATO said there were no reports of enemy fire at the time in the province where the helicopter went down Sept. 21.
Wagstaff could have been one of the two pilots at the controls, but military officials say that's still uncertain. Wagstaff's family says he was routinely flying helicopters on his third combat tour overseas. He served once in Iraq and twice in Afghanistan.
Wagstaff is survived by his wife, Tiffany. He was a graduate of Orem High School and Utah State University.
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One of deadliest days in war for 101st Airborne
By Jake Lowary
The (Clarksville, Tenn.) Leaf-Chronicle
With the deaths of five soldiers in a helicopter crash, Sept. 21 was one of the deadliest days for the 101st Airborne Division since the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq began.
The crash, announced by International Security Assistance Force officials, killed nine NATO service members and injured two civilians. Five of the soldiers were assigned to 101st Airborne Division’s 101st Combat Aviation Brigade. The other casualties were U.S. sailors.
The crash is the worst in Afghanistan in four years, according to The Associated Press. Tuesday’s crash was the deadliest since May 2006, when a Chinook helicopter went down while attempting a nighttime landing on a small mountaintop in eastern Kunar province, killing 10 U.S. soldiers.
Fort Campbell spokesman Rick Rzepka said the crash happened in Qalat, Afghanistan, which is in the southeast corner about 50 miles northeast of Kandahar, and is still under investigation.
The cause of the crash was not known. ISAF officials have said there was no enemy fire reported in the area at the time of the crash, but the Taliban has claimed it shot down the helicopter. The Taliban often exaggerate their claims and sometimes take credit for accidents.
According to a news release from Fort Campbell, killed were:
* Lt. Col. Robert Francis Baldwin, 37, of New Boston, Ill. Baldwin entered the Army in February 1994 and arrived at Fort Campbell in January 2007. Baldwin was an Aviation Liaison Officer assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company.
Baldwin is survived by his wife, Danielle M. Baldwin; daughters Rachel and Meaghan Baldwin; and sons Keegan and Patrick Baldwin, all of Clarksville. He is also survived by parents Gary and Cheryl Baldwin of New Boston, Ill.
* Chief Warrant Officer 3 Matthew Gabriel Wagstaff, 34, of Orem, Utah. Wagstaff entered the Army in January 2002 and arrived at Fort Campbell in May 2007. Wagstaff was a UH-60 Black Hawk pilot assigned to Bravo Company, 5th Battalion.
Wagstaff is survived by his wife, Tiffany A. Wagstaff of Clarksville; and parents Ronald and Suzanne Wagstaff of Orem, Utah.
* Chief Warrant Officer 2 Jonah David McClellan, 26, of Minnesota. McClellan entered the Army in August 2003 and arrived at Fort Campbell in September 2006. McClellan was a UH-60 Black Hawk pilot assigned to Bravo Company, 5th Battalion.
McClellan is survived by his wife, Nina S. McClellan; sons Ayden and Renn McClellan; daughter Ayla M. McClellan; and parents Rodney and Susan McClellan, all of Battle Ground, Wash.
* Staff Sgt. Joshua David Powell, 25, of New Berlin, Ill. Powell entered the Army in November 2004 and arrived at Fort Campbell in June 2005. Powell was a UH-60 Black Hawk crew chief assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 6th Battalion.
Powell is survived by his father, David A. Powell of Springfield, Ill., and his mother, Susan B. Needham of Pleasant Plains, Ill.
* Sgt. Marvin Ray Calhoun Jr., 23, of Osceola, Ind. Calhoun entered the Army in June 2006 and arrived at Fort Campbell in December 2007. Calhoun was a construction equipment repairer serving as a door gunner and was assigned to Bravo Company, 5th Battalion.
Calhoun is survived by his wife, Yamili Sanchez, and daughter, Yohani Sanchez of Fort Hood, Texas, and parents, Marvin Calhoun Sr. and Susan Needham of Elkhart, Ind.
The 101st CAB deployed in March to support NATO forces in southern Afghanistan. Its roughly 3,000 soldiers make up the 20,000-plus soldiers from Fort Campbell that are currently deployed.
Including the crash, 11 soldiers from Fort Campbell died in the first three weeks of September.
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Pilot had a goofy side under tough exterior
The Associated Press
With a smile on his face, Matthew Wagstaff's college roommate remembers when the burly, future chief warrant officer once showed off his moves during Madonna's "Vogue."
Greg Butler said that after a couple of beers, the 6-foot-4 Wagstaff did his best impression of the pop star as the song played at a Utah State University dance.
Years later, the memory still draws laughter from Wagstaff's friends.
"Beneath a tough exterior, he had a gentle and kind heart," longtime friend Pat Hoggan said.
Wagstaff, 34, of Orem, Utah, died Sept. 21 in a helicopter crash that also killed four other members of the 101st Airborne Division, based at Fort Campbell.
He was a graduate of Orem High School and Utah State University, where he earned a degree in Aerospace Technologies.
His father said his passions included football and flying, according to the Salt Lake Tribune.
"He played football with everything he had," Ron Wagstaff said. "And he was one of those rare people who has a dream as a child and then makes it come true. He became a pilot."
Matthew Wagstaff leaves behind his wife, Tiffany, whom he married in January.