Air Force

November 27, 2013

Additional remains of Air Force pilot found

Maj. Troy Gilbert, an F-16 Fighting Falcon pilot was killed Nov. 27, 2007, in an F-16 crash 30 miles southwest of Balad Air Base, Iraq. Gilbert was the standardization and evaluation chief for the 332nd Expeditionary Operations Group and was deployed from the 309th Fighter Squadron from Luke Air Force Base, Ariz.

Additional remains of an Air Force pilot who died in combat in 2006 in Iraq have been found, service officials announced Nov. 19.

Maj. Troy Gilbert was killed when his F-16C Fighting Falcon crashed 20 miles northwest of Baghdad, Iraq, Nov. 27, 2006, while engaged in support of coalition ground combat operations.

Partial remains were recovered and buried with full honors at a funeral Dec. 11, 2006 at Arlington National Cemetery.

“We have prayed for this for almost seven years, and we’ve never given up hope nor will we ever give up hope,” said Ginger Gilbert-Ravella, former wife of Major Gilbert.  “We have always known finding Troy’s remains would be akin to finding a needle in a haystack or a grain of sand at the beach. Though our deepest desire is that his entire body would be returned to the U.S., we are grateful for this.”

At the family’s request, the Air Force requested a search for additional remains be re-opened, which was approved by the undersecretary of defense. This cleared the way for the Defense Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office, or DPMO, to continue searching in cooperation with the Iraqi government.

“I am grateful to the tireless efforts of our nation’s military and its leaders as they have continued to make Troy’s case a priority,” Gilbert-Ravella said.  “We are thankful to those who did the right thing in turning his remains over to the U.S. and ultimately our family.  We are thankful to the men and women who have lost life and limb in pursuit of helping the country of Iraq seek democracy and order.  I believe we can see the fruits of those sacrifices today.”

Then Secretary of Air Force Michael Donley said, “We honor the ultimate sacrifice Major Gilbert made for our nation. His family deserves nothing less than our best effort to recover his remains and return them to his loved ones.”

Additional remains were recovered by DPMO and the Air Force received them in September 2012. They were positively identified by the Armed Forces Medical Examiner as Gilbert’s remains. Those remains will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery along with the remains originally recovered in 2006.

According to the Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations Commander Col. John M. Devillier, notification was delayed regarding the remains found in 2012 in hopes that additional remains would be recovered.

When it was determined that additional remains may not be forthcoming, the family was notified, he said. That notification took place on Nov. 15.

According to a vignette in the Air Force’s Portraits in Courage, Gilbert, a 12-year Air Force veteran, had already completed 21 combat sorties in the F-16 supporting ground forces under enemy fire. On one mission, he found and identified anti-Iraqi forces, then passed critical targeting information to Coalition forces, who attacked and eliminated the threat. In another time-sensitive mission, he killed 10 insurgents concealed in a palm grove with the pinpoint delivery of a laser-guided weapon.

“Major Gilbert was a guardian of freedom and justice, who made the ultimate sacrifice in the defense of our great nation and the Iraqi people,” said Acting Secretary of the Air Force Eric Fanning.  “Continuing the search for our fallen comrade demonstrates our promise to never leave an Airman behind.”

Gilbert, who was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with Valor, deployed in September 2006 from Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., to the 332nd Air Expeditionary Wing, Balad Air Base, Iraq. He was assigned as the 332nd Expeditionary Operations Group chief of standardization and evaluation. On the day of the accident, he was flying with the 524th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron.

“We are confident the U.S. military will continue the task at hand to fully recover Troy’s remains,” Gilbert-Ravella said.  “But today is a day to celebrate and remember the promise that was made to leave no one behind on the field of battle.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Samuel Price

RMO, stakeholders keep eye on sky

Samuel Price The road used to get onto the Barry M. Goldwater Range lies beneath the running water July 9, 2014, that resulted from monsoon rains. With data from the additional recently installed weather stations, personnel wil...
 
 

Resource management — Doing more with less

Since I joined the Air Force in 1992, our manpower and resources have been gradually reduced with no obvious change to the mission we support. While this has been labeled “doing more with less,” I don’t believe we’re truly doing any more than we did when I entered the military 22 years ago. We seem...
 
 

Situational awareness

Throughout my career, the importance of situational awareness has been driven into my head. This became exceedingly clear to me when I landed in Tabuk, Saudi Arabia. It was March 17, 2003, about 48 hours until Operation Iraqi Freedom kicked off. We were busy building tents, making bunkers and preparing to execute the mission. Doing...
 

 

Air Force OSI agents prevent online exploitation of children

QUANTICO, Va. — Child sex crimes are not unique to any particular base but are a perpetual problem across the Air Force and society. Online exploitation of children continues to be a problem and is routinely investigated by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations. As part of this effort, AFOSI field units have partnered...
 
 

News Briefs February 27, 2015

MDG appointment line upgrade Patients calling the 56th Medical Group at 623-856-2273 Wednesday afternoon to schedule an appointment may reach a busy signal and may have to call back if all booking agents are on the line with other callers. The queue function allowing patients to wait on hold for the next available booking agent...
 
 

Airmen get T-bolts to give blood, win award

Tech. Sgt. Alisa Frisch, 56th Medical Group unit training manager, and Capt. Sharlott Uriarte, 56th Medical Support Squadron, were among the top 3 percent of award-winning blood drive coordinators recently honored by United Blood Services, earning a Hero Award for providing the largest impact on the blood supply. Of the 1,080 organizations that sponsored blood...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin