STILLWATER, Minn. (FOX 9) - Ten years ago, three Minnesota National Guard soldiers paid the ultimate sacrifice in Iraq. Their brothers and sisters in arms, family and friends are remembering the trio after a rocket attack took their lives.
The three soldiers belonged to the 34th Military Police Company in Stillwater. Thursday, July 16, 2009 Specialists Carlos Wilcox, James Wertish and Dan Drevnick were killed in action at their base in Basra in southern Iraq, an area known for enemy rocket and mortar attacks.
"It was probably once a week we would take on rocket attacks we called them IDF or indirect fire Thursdays, this event did happen on a Thursday," said Major Isaac Allen.
At the time, Major Allen was the three Minnesota soldiers' second-in-command in Iraq. Their unit is known as the Red Bulls. The men were just finishing their mission as military police patrolling their base.
"This night the alarms went off that we were about to take fire and they did the exact right thing and went to take cover," said Major Allen. "The rocket came in low and landed right at the jersey barrier they had taken cover behind and the rocket shrapnel went everywhere."
A decade later, these three Red Bulls' loved ones are posting tributes on social media.
"For me personally, it was some reflection this morning, waking up early and thinking on what the day meant," said Major Allen.
The three Red Bulls may be gone, but not forgotten.
"The whole unit, the three men individually, you couldn't ask for a better people to be deployed with to war zone," he said.
For more information about programs to honor these soldiers, click here.