Originally Published: June 19, 2014 6 a.m.
I am compelled to respond to the letter written by Larry Silvey, featured on June 10.
There is great controversy over the whole Bowe Bergdahl affair and that most likely won't change any time soon. However, let's get the story straight! Mr. Silvey writes, "Fact: We have lost six soldiers trying to rescue Bowe." What makes this a 'fact'? That Silvey has heard this rumor repeated from many sources does not make it a fact. What sources did Mr. Silvey use to substantiate his claim? Did he even make any attempt at all to seek the truth or does he merely believe everything he hears?
After investigating online and watching many news broadcasts, I have learned the following: Defense secretary Chuck Hagel has stated that there is no evidence to show that any soldiers at all were killed trying to rescue Bowe Bergdahl. He also states that there is no evidence so far that Bergdahl was a deserter, either. Rather, there are conflicting reports on how or why he disappeared. It may turn out that he did leave his post as a deserter, but that is supposition at this point, not a fact.
In addition, the following soldiers' deaths, which are blamed on the supposed rescue mission, actually occurred as follows. The six soldiers were killed in roughly a month's time from Aug. 18, 2009 - Sept. 5, 2009.
Darryn Andrews was killed when his vehicle was struck by a roadside bomb and thrown hand-grenade. His mother, Sondra Andrews, "feels" that her son was killed trying to save a traitor. Sorry, but feelings are not facts.
Clayton Bowen and Morris Walker's vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb while they traveled to provide security for Afghanistan's presidential election.
Kurt Curtiss was shot and killed during a firefight while his unit was supporting Afghan security forces.
Matthew Martinek died on Sept. 11, 2009, at a medical center in Germany from injuries incurred a week earlier after his vehicle was hit by a bomb, grenade and small arms fire.
Michael Murphrey was killed in the Paktika province when his unit was hit by a roadside bomb.
Everyone, including Mr. Silvey, is entitled to his or her opinions. BUT: they are not entitled to their own facts. We have a horrible tendency to jump to conclusions in this country and take anything and everything we hear as fact. Simply believing that something is true and factual does not make it so.