Another Soldier Dies From Fallujah Shootdown
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Nov. 3, 2003 A soldier succumbed to his wounds today, raising the total of those killed in the Chinook shootdown to 16, Pentagon officials said.
Twenty soldiers were wounded in the action outside the town of Amiryah. The village is near the Baathist hotbed of Fallujah.
"We will continue on course despite our losses," said Marine Capt. David Romley, a Pentagon spokesman. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and friends of those who died."
Sixteen of those wounded were flown to Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. Four remain in Iraq.
The CH-47 from the 12th Aviation Brigade was transporting soldiers to Baghdad so they could participate in the rest and recuperation leave program. Reports indicate that a man-portable antiaircraft missile brought down the chopper.
Officials dispatched an aerial quick-reaction force immediately and those assets provided support. Ground troops from the 82nd Airborne Division arrived at the scene soon after and secured the area.
There are about 100 Chinooks in Iraq. They are the medium- lift workhorse of the chopper fleet, and there is no thought to grounding the craft, Pentagon spokesmen said. The choppers are equipped with countermeasures to thwart missiles. Officials will, however, examine the attack to see if any operational changes are needed, officials said.