Frank D. Bryant, Jr.
Lieuenant Colonel, United States Air Force
U.S. Department of Defense
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Public Affairs)
IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. 360-11
DOD Identifies Air Force Casualties
The Department of Defense announced today the deaths of eight airmen who were supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.
They died April 27, 2011, at the Kabul International Airport, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from gunfire. The incident is under investigation.
Major Philip D. Ambard, 44, of Edmonds, Washington. He was assigned to the 460th Space Communications Squadron, Buckley Air Force Base, Cololorado. For more information media may contact the Air Force Academy public affairs office at 719-333-7731.
Major Jeffrey O. Ausborn, 41, of Gadsden, Alabama. He was assigned to the 99th Flying Training Squadron, Randolph Air Force Base, Texas. For more information media may contact the 502nd Air Base Wing public affairs office at 210-652-4410.
Major David L. Brodeur, 34, of Auburn, Massachusetts. He was assigned to the 11th Air Force, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. For more information media may contact the Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson public affairs office at 907-552-2341.
Master Sergeant Tara R. Brown, 33, of Deltona, Florida. She was assigned to the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. For more information media may contact the Air Force Office of Special Investigations public affairs office at 571-305-8010.
Lieutenant Colonel Frank D. Bryant Jr., 37, of Knoxville, Tennessee. He was assigned to the 56th Operations Group, Luke Air Force Base, Arizona. For more information media may contact the Luke Air Force Base public affairs office at 623-856-6011.
Major Raymond G. Estelle II, 40, of New Haven, Connecticut. He was assigned to Headquarters Air Combat Command, Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virgina. For more information media may contact the Headquarters Air Combat Command public affairs office at 757-764-5007.
Captain Nathan J. Nylander, 35, of Hockley, Texas. He was assigned to the 25th Operational Weather Squadron, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona. For more information media may contact the Davis-Monthan Air Force Base public affairs office at 520-228-3406.
Major Charles A. Ransom, 31, of Midlothian,
Virginia. He was assigned to the 83rd Network Operations Squadron,
Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virgina. For more information media may
contact the 24th Air Force public affairs office at 210-977-5796.
The airmen and a U.S. contractor died April 27 when an Afghan pilot opened fire at Kabul International Airport.
Top Air Force and military leaders — including Joint Chiefs Chairman Admoral Mike Mullen, Air Force Chief of Staff General Norton Schwartz and Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force James Roy — were in attendance for the dignified transfer.
The Defense Department on April 29, 2011 released the names of the eight airmen killed in the attack. They include:
* Lieutenant Colonel Frank D. Bryant Jr., 37,
of Luke Air Force Base, Arizona
Also on April 29, 2011, the International Security Assistance Force released details of its initial investigation into the shooting, “in light of inaccuracy in media reports to date on this incident,” according to an ISAF release.
ISAF concluded that the gunman, who was carrying two weapons, left the room where the shooting occurred severely wounded, dying in a different location within the building. He appeared to be acting alone and had no connection with the Taliban, according to ISAF.
2 of slain airmen based at Arizona installations
Two of eight U.S. airmen killed in an April 27 shooting at an Afghanistan airport were stationed at bases in Arizona.
Lieutenant Colonel Frank D. Bryant Jr., 37, of Knoxville, Tennessee, and Captain Nathan J. Nylander, 35, of Hockley, Texas, died Wednesday after gunfire erupted at Kabul International Airport, the Pentagon said.
Bryant was assigned to the 56th Operations Group at Luke Air Force Base. Nylander was assigned to the 25th Operational Weather Squadron at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.
Nylander is survived by his wife, Miriam, and three children.
Colonel John Cherrey, 355th Fighter Wing commander in Tucson, said the tragedy hits close to home with its own among the casualties.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family and loved ones of the airmen who paid the ultimate sacrifice protecting our freedoms,” Cherrey said.
Brigadier Gen. Jerry Harris Jr., commander of the 56th Fighter Wing at Luke, said the base was devastated by Bryant’s death.
“Our focus now turns to supporting his family and friends as they go through the grieving process,” Harris said. “He was an excellent pilot, wingman and airman. He excelled in everything he did and gave his life defending the nation he served for 16 years.”
Bryant had been stationed at Luke since 2007. He was deployed in June as an air adviser to Afghanistan to help develop that country’s air force, Luke spokeswoman Barbara Plante said.
Bryant leaves behind a wife and child, according to the Gannett NBC affiliate in Knoxville.
“We’d like to send our deepest thoughts and
sympathy to the family and friends of all of the airmen killed in Wednesday’s
tragic attack,” Harris said.
KNOXVILLE, Tennessee - Frank D. Bryant Jr. was the only Tennnessean and the highest-ranking officer killed in this week's mass shooting at an Afghanistan airport, military officials said today.
Bryant, 37, served as a lieutenant colonel with the Air Force's 56th Operations Group and had been stationed in Afghanistan since June 2010, attached to the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisory Group.
He died Wednesday when an angry Afghan pilot opened fire in an airport operations room in the Afghan capital of Kabul.
"He was a great pilot, and a great wingman," said Barbara Plante, a spokeswoman for the 56th. "We're all just devastated."
Seven other U.S. airmen and an American civilian contractor, all serving as advisers to the country's air force, died in the shooting, according to the U.S. Department of Defense.
Bryant graduated from Karns High in 1991, the same year he brought home the state trophy at 119 pounds. The win led to a congressional appointment to the Air Force Academy, where he was captain of the wrestling team and most-valuable player. He received his silver wings in 1997.
Bryant had served in Iraq, where he piloted an F-16 on more than a dozen bombing missions in Baghdad and helped support a surprise raid aimed at Saddam Hussein and his sons.
Bryant's family couldn't be immediately reached.
Funeral arrangements remain incomplete.
BRYANT, LT. COL. FRANK "BRUISER", JR. - 37, a 16-year U. S. Air Force veteran, died in the line of duty April 27 during his deployment as an air advisor to the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisor Group in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Born and raised in Knoxville, TN, Lieutenant Colonel Bryant is a 1991 graduate of Karns High School where he was a champion wrestler, winning the Tennessee High School State Championship in that same year. He continued wrestling throughout his college career at the U.S. Air Force Academy, where, in 1995, he served as the team captain and was named most valuable player.
After graduating from the academy in 1995 with a bachelor's degree in general engineering, he attended undergraduate pilot training and became a T-37 instructor pilot. Lieutenant Colonel Bryant went on to become a decorated F-16 pilot with 3,047 total flying hours, 121 of which were in combat.
During his career, Lieutenant Colonel Bryant served at Columbus Air Force Base, MS; Kunsan Air Base, Republic of Korea; Shaw Air Force Base, SC; and Luke Air Force Base, AZ. He also served as an exchange pilot to the United Arab Emirates. In addition to his most recent deployment to Combined Joint Chiefs of Staff Afghanistan-Pakistan Hands Program as an air advisor to the 438th Air Expeditionary Advisor Group, he deployed in 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
During his career, he earned his jump wings, senior pilot wings and a master's degree in business administration and management from Touro University. In 2008, he won the 19th Air Force Air-to-Ground Fighter Pilot Instructor of the Year award and was named the 19th Air Force Top Instructor Fighter Pilot, receiving the General William R. Looney, III Award.
Lieutenant Colonel Bryant was a recipient of the Bronze Star Medal (posthumously); Purple Heart (posthumously); Air Force Combat Action Medal (posthumously); Defense Meritorious Service Medal; the Meritorious Service Medal; the Air Medal, one oak leaf cluster; the Air Force Commendation Medal, one oak leaf clusters; the Air Force Achievement Medal; Joint Meritorious Unit Award; Air Force Outstanding Unit with valor device and two oak leaf clusters; Combat Readiness Medal; National Defense Medal; Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal; Global War on Terrorism Service Medal; Korean Defense Service Medal; Afghanistan Campaign Medal (posthumously); Non-Article 5 NATO Medal (posthumously); Air Force Overseas Ribbon (short and long); Air Force Expeditionary Service Ribbon with Gold Border, one oak leaf cluster; Air Force Longevity Service, three oak leaf clusters; and the Air Force Training Ribbon.
Lieutenant Colonel Frank D. Bryant Jr. is preceded in death by grandparents, Baker and Elizabeth Bryant and Robert and Elizabeth Bathe. He is survived by his wife and son, Janice H. Bryant and Sean L. Bryant of Arlington, VA; his father, Frank D. Bryant, Sr.; his mother, Patricia L. Bryant, both of Knoxville, TN; his older sister and brother-in-law, Amie and Bill Whitworth of Morristown, TN; his younger brother, Raymond Bryant of Knoxville, TN; his niece, Aubrey Whitworth of Morristown, TN; and his large extended family of aunts, uncles and cousins spread throughout the United States.
The funeral service will be at Arlington National Cemetery, May 20, 12:45 p.m., beginning at the Memorial Chapel on Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall. A reception will follow at the JBM-HH Officers' Club. For more information about the funeral service, directions and other information, please visit https://sites.google.com/site/ltcolbryantsfuneralservice/. In addition, there are plans currently being arranged for a memorial service in the Knoxville area. Date and Time, TBA.
The Bryant family express their gratitude for
the outpouring of community support and asks for nothing more. Friends
have continued to ask what they can do for the family. To address these
requests, the Air Warrior Courage Foundation (AWCF) established a college
fund for Colonel Bryant's son. Therefore, in lieu of flowers, if you wish
to give, contact the AWCF. Direct donations can be given by visiting the
AWCF website, http://www.airwarriorcourage.org/, selecting the "Donations"
tab and then selecting the "Give Direct" button. Please annotate "Sean
Bryant 529 College Fund" in the comments section. If you have any additional
questions, you may contact AWCF at (877) 921-2923, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org,
or by fax (301) 587-2923.
BRYANT, FRANK D JR
Posted: 14 June 2011 Updated: 8 September 2011 Updated: 22 November 2011
Photo By Eileen Horan, September 2011
Photo By Eileen Horan, June 2011