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Pentagon identifies the 13 U.S. military personnel killed by suicide bomb at Kabul airport

At least nine of the 13 dead military personnel had already been identified on social media.

Updated: August 28, 2021 - 2:38pm

The Facts Inside Our Reporter’s Notebook

The Department of Defense has identified the 13 U.S. service members, representing the Marines, Army and Navy, who were killed in the suicide bombing that took place at the Kabul, Afghanistan airport on Thursday. 

This was the deadliest attack on U.S. forces since 2011, when an Army Chinook helicopter with 38 occupants aboard, including 15 commandos from SEAL Team 6, was shot down, presumably by members of the Taliban. There were no survivors. SEAL Team 6 had taken out Osama bin Laden just three months prior to their chopper being destroyed. 

The Pentagon said that those killed at the Kabul airport on Thursday included 11 Marines, one Navy hospitalman and one Army staff sergeant, representing 10 states with four of them coming from California. They released a full list on Saturday of the 13 killed, nine of whom had previously been identified by their families or through social media. 

The Marines killed in the strike were identified as Staff Sgt. Darin Hoover, 31; Cpl. Hunter Lopez, 22; Cpl. Daegan Page, 23; Cpl. Humberto Sanchez, 22; Lance Cpl. Jared Schmitz, 20; Lance Cpl. David Espinoza, 20; Lance Cpl. Rylee McCollum, 20; Lance Cpl. Dylan Merola, 20; Lance Cpl. Kareem Nikoui, 20; Sgt. Nicole Gee, 23; and Sgt. Johanny Rosariopichardo, 25.

The bomb blast also took the life of 22-year-old Navy Hospitalman Maxton Soviak and Army Staff St. Ryan Knauss, 23.

Rylee McCollum of Wyoming, one of the first victims identified in the attack, was expecting a baby in about a month, according to The Hill.

Nikoui of California was also identified by his family. His father Steve told The Daily Beast that he felt President Biden "turned his back" on his son. "They sent my son over there as a paper pusher and then had the Taliban outside providing security," said Nikoui. "I blame my own military leaders… Biden turned his back on him. That's it."

In addition to the Americans, more than 170 Afghans, two British nationals and the child of a British national were also killed in the attack.

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