07 July 2008

FOB Bostick

Lieutenant Colonel Christopher D. Kolenda (left) and Command Sergeant Major Victor Pedraza (right), commander and command sergeant major of 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), unveil a plaque dedicated to Maj. Thomas Bostick at Forward Operating Base Naray, in Konar province, Afghanistan, June 28. During the ceremony, FOB Naray was renamed FOB Bostick in memory of Bostick.

Konar base renamed after fallen hero

By Staff Sgt. Brandon Aird
173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team Public Affairs

BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan (July 2, 2008) – Forward Operating Base Naray in Konar province, Afghanistan, was renamed FOB Bostick to honor and remember a fallen Soldier who died leading his men.

Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Afghan National Army soldiers gathered near FOB Naray’s helicopter landing zone June 28, to officially rename their forward operating base in memory of Maj. Thomas Bostick, the former commander of Bravo Troop, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne), from Llano, Texas.

“Today we celebrate the life of the finest combat leader I have ever met,” said LTC Christopher D. Kolenda, 1st Squadron, 91st Cavalry Regiment (Airborne) commander. “He died while saving the lives of his paratroopers against a numerically superior foe.”

Bostick was leading a convoy back to FOB Keating after meeting with local elders near Kamu Village when it was ambushed by insurgents. Bostick and Staff Sgt. William R. Fritsche were killed during the ensuing fire fight. Another 13 American Soldiers were wounded in the engagement.

“We dedicate this forward operating base to his legacy and memory,” said Kolenda. “Let all who enter this base, and all who write or speak the name of it be reminded that freedom is not free.”

A few days after the fire fight, village elders tired of the fighting going on near their villages approached Kolenda, which resulted in the 100-man shura.

“The price paid in blood that day has led to greater stability in one of the most violent districts in the country,” Kolenda said. “[It has] set the conditions for the emergence of the 100-man shura, and has increased the safety and security of civilian and soldier alike in that region.”

Near the end of the ceremony two F-15 Fighter Jets flew side-by-side over FOB Bostick to pay their final respects to a fallen hero.

Thanks to John at the Castle.

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