View Full Version : Loss of my best fishing partner

01-29-2010, 03:38 AM
I recieved tragic news today that my brother was killed in action in Afghanistan. He was a 24 year old Green Beretand father of two. We grew up in Greeneville, TN and shared a deep love of the Smokies. I took him on his first backpacking trip when I was seventeen and he was 14 in Cosby on the Madron Bald Loop. He leaves behind a wife and daughter, Taylor, who turned 3 on the 26th and a son Gavin who will be one on Feb. 26th. We were as tight as two brothers could be. He loved fly fishing, especially in the park. We shared many memories over the past ten years camping and fishing there. He has been living near Seattle for the past five for the most part. I posted about my trip out there to fish a couple of years ago. I flew out for winter steelhead. We had a blast. His first deployment was 15 months in Iraq and he returned in September of 2007 before being selected to special forces. When he returned from Iraq I bought him a TFO Project Healing Waters Rod. He cought many Salmon and Steelhead this past season on that rod. Daniel actually helped me special order the matching camo rod case for it, not sure if he remembers that. He left for this deployment on Dec. 28. He died one month to the day. I carry a very heavy heart today. I sent him an email Sunday telling him about a recent trip to Paint Creek I had. This was the water we grew up on in Greeneville learning to fly fish. I am sad to say he never recieved it. He was my best friend and will be dearly missed.


This picture was taken just a couple of weeks ago. He is in the middle in the back, sporting his favorite LRO brookie hat. He was wearing that hat when he was killed.

01-29-2010, 06:07 AM
God bless your family and his, he was truly a patriot and a hero. The country is grateful for his sacrifice and sorry for your loss.
Thank You,

Speck Lover
01-29-2010, 08:12 AM

I am so sorry to learn of your brother's passing. As Tad stated, he was a patriot and a hero. I will be praying for your family and his during this difficult time.

01-29-2010, 09:14 AM
God's blessings to you all. Respectfully, Silvercreek

01-29-2010, 09:35 AM

Bless you and your family in this trying time. Your brother is a true patriot and hero and our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as well as with his wife and children.



Carolina Boy
01-29-2010, 09:47 AM
God Bless you and your family in this most difficult time. Your brother was, and is, a true hero and patriot. God bless him, those who serve and served with him, your family, and America.

01-29-2010, 12:30 PM
This brings tears to my eyes! Thank you for sharing this with your fishing friends. I am so fortunate and grateful for people like your brother. His sacrifice gives me freedom and I will never forget that!

I will keep his family, you, and his friends in my prayers!

I have only one regret in life; that is not serving my country in the armed forces at one time or another!

Remember, he will always be with you friend!

God Bless your brother and you - Aaron!

01-29-2010, 02:45 PM

I'm sorry for the loss of your brother and fishing partner.

Hang in there,


01-29-2010, 02:52 PM
I'm at a loss. I can't imagine the feeling. My thoughts and prayers go out to your and your family. Like the rest of the sentiments above, I agree your brother is a hero. I am able to do the things I do because of people like your brother.

Randy Ratliff
01-29-2010, 04:00 PM

01-29-2010, 05:03 PM
I am very sorry to hear of your loss. I can not imagine what you and your family are going through but you are in my prayers.


01-29-2010, 09:02 PM
God bless him and all special ops troops.

Carolina Boy
01-30-2010, 01:37 AM
Aaron, I would really like to send you something that my father gave me and countless military personnel, I grew up in a military family and most everyone in my family has served. I am actively beginning a career working as a SA therapist in the VA system. Again God bless your family and whenever you are able please send me an email with your mailling address. I would very much like to send you, and all of the members of your family, something that has given me strengh in times of confusion and need. God bless you and take strength in the knowledge that God IS in control. If you ever need someone to talk to, fish with, or just hang out with know you are not alone, I am an email or call away and I know many on this board feel the same way please don't hesitate. I honestly hope to talk with you. God Bless

Barry Murphy


Scott Spencer
01-30-2010, 02:41 AM
God is taking care of your brother and comforting him now. I pray that God grants you, your family, and his family strength in this most difficult time.

Bless your brother and all that he stood for and fought for.

01-30-2010, 12:38 PM
I am not a regular contributor, but have followed the forum daily for a couple years. I was just reaching out to anything I could grab on this forum. The people on here always seem to very grounded and big hearted. All of those assumption are now confirmed. I appreciate this community very much for the support. My brother and I were fisherman. Most times we can only be understood by other fishermen. This really means alot.

01-30-2010, 07:51 PM

There are no words I could write here that could let you know how sorry I am or that could ease your feeling of loss. Just know that people do care and are hurting along side you. I will pray for your family.

02-01-2010, 09:59 AM
As a native Tennessean I send my condolences to you and your family in the
tragic loss of this brave young man. The war becomes real when it hits home.

02-02-2010, 10:39 AM

Your family will certainly be in our prayers. Let me say thank-you for sharing your personal story, we need to be reminded of the sacrifices that our military families make. We are all grateful to your brother and those who serve with him. We will be praying for his family.


02-02-2010, 11:06 AM
I feel like donwinn in the comment below there are not enough words or ways to think all of our military and familys. I Thank you for sharing this with us it just reminds me that we need to keep praying for our military. God bless and I'll remember your family in prayer.

Byron Begley
02-02-2010, 06:15 PM

I am so sad to hear this news. Your brother is a hero to me and probably everyone on this board. God Bless you and anyone who knew this fine man who gave his life so we can be free. I am very sorry for your loss. I don't know what else to say. Take care brother.


02-02-2010, 08:01 PM
Your brother is my hero also. Sorry for your loss. Our prayers and thoughts are with you and your family.

Paula Begley
02-02-2010, 08:14 PM

I am so saddened for your loss. Your brother was a hero...and while it is, I am sure, cold comfort...please know that there are people who are appreciative of his sacrifice and the sacrifice of your entire family in order that we remain free; I am one of them.

He is in God's hands now...and I will pray for all of your family that you will be able to take comfort in that.


02-03-2010, 08:10 AM
I'm sorry to hear of your loss. Be assured that you and the family will be in our prayers.

02-03-2010, 12:14 PM
I hate I never got to meet your brother, I am sure I would have liked him. When I hear the words "as a grateful nation" at a service member's funeral it always reminds me of the sacrifices that have been made for us as a nation. Your brother was among the finest of the best among us. I am sure he was very proud of his service as an elite Special Forces soldier. Rest assured his military family grieves for him and will miss him as well. Your brother and his family will be in my thoughts and prayers today.

"Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, and love leaves a memory no one can steal"

Rog 1
02-03-2010, 04:21 PM
Our nation is stonger for your brother's sacrifice. He must have been a very special person to step up and volunteer for such service. I know this must create a void in your life that nothing will ever fill. You and your extended family will be in my prayers.

02-04-2010, 09:35 AM
AC- As with everyone that reads this thread and thinks about family and friends that have served in the military, know that our hearts and prayers go out to you and your family especially his children. Nobody knows the pain you feel, but God is always next to you and in your heart. He will reveal himself to you in time. Your brother was a true hero and patriot and obviously loved serving his country, and our country is better because of people like him.
True brothers can never be seperated and next time you are doing an activity (flyfishing, camping). Know that he is with you. You probably have one of the toughest angels in heaven looking out for you.
Sorry again for your loss. You and your family will be in our prayers.
Let your LRO family know if there is anything we can do for you.

02-04-2010, 04:14 PM
I'm at a total loss for words. I'm usually not a very emotional guy but I'm not one bit ashamed to admit that tears are dripping off the end of my nose as I type this.

One My friend's son was hurt in Iraq while serving his second tour as a Marine and my best friend's daughter has her fiance in Afghanistan right now serving as a scout sniper for the USMC.

I've known both of these kids since they were in diapers and they are as much my children as my own son is.

I can't even begin to imagine you pain.
As sad as I am right now and multiply that by several thousand times and I'd probably be coming close to what you're feeling on a good day.

Please tell his family that there is at least one hillbilly here in Kentucky that is actively praying for them and who is deeply appreciative of your brother's service and sacrifice.

I sincerely wish I could turn back time a couple weeks and make this not have happened but that cannot be done.

Please do know we're praying for you and your family. Please also know that through your words here, your brother's life and ultimate sacrifice has touched many hearts here.

Jeff Sluder

02-04-2010, 09:34 PM
May God bless you and your family for your loss. I hate to hear of a soldier getting killed in battle. But his work over there isn't forgotten. I for one always keep them in my thoughts and prayers they are our true heros.