Soldiers from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (LightInfantry) from Fort Drum, N.Y., and the 4th Brigade, 6th Iraqi Army Division have been conducting non-stop searches for the missing Soldiers - all assigned to the 4th Battalion, 31st Infantry Regiment, 2nd BCT - since their abduction.
“The brigade has been constantly searching for the Soldiers since their abduction,” said Col. Michael Kershaw, 2nd BCT commander. “As soon as wewere aware of the incident, we immediately cordoned off the area and started thesearch.”
The brigade, which is made up of about 14 company-sized elements, is usingalmost all of its elements both to search and to provide logistical support toSoldiers on the ground.
“We have been averaging about 20 events a day and we’re providing cots,food and water to those assisting with the search,” Kershaw said.
“Although some tips may not be accurate, it is important for each one to beinvestigated,” said Maj. Rob Griggs, the 4-31 operations officer. “All tips must beconsidered important, because you never know if it is the one that will lead you tothe Soldiers.”
“Everyone is motivated and knows the importance of finding the Soldiers,”Kershaw said. “They all take pride in this brigade and their fellow Soldiers … It isin the Soldiers’ Creed to never leave a fallen comrade.”
Search efforts will continue until the Soldiers are found.
(Taken from press release #20070518-01 by Multi-National Corps-Iraq - Public Affairs Office, Camp Victory, Iraq - Written by Staff Sgt. Angela McKinzie)
Army Works to Determine Identity of Fallen U.S. Soldier
May 17, 2007
The deceased soldier’s remains are undergoing DNA testing at Dover Air Force Base, Del., Abel said. The unidentified U.S. soldier’s duty status is listed, for now, as whereabouts unknown, he said, along with the three missing soldiers. Al Qaeda-affiliated terrorists in Iraq have claimed to be holding the three missing soldiers.
Meanwhile, U.S. and Iraqi security forces continue to scour the area in search of the missing soldiers.
“By God, they’re not going to stop until they find their fallen comrades,” Army Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, 3rd Infantry Division commander, said yesterday from Baghdad during a telephone interview with reporters.
A reporter asked for Lynch’s reaction in regard to reports that al Qaeda has placed statements on the Internet telling U.S. forces to cease the search for the missing soldiers.
“I give no credence in what al Qaeda and al Qaeda-associated members decide to put on the Internet or what they decide to announce to the world,” Lynch said. “We’re not going to stop looking for our soldiers until we find those soldiers.
“Whatever they put on the Internet, whatever pronouncements they make, we’re not going to stop. We will not leave our fallen comrades,” the two-star general emphasized.