|From Michael Huffman 04/28/05:
Here is a couple pics of Ferrin, Londono, and Brattain’s memorial. We held it at what was them Camp Falcon, along highway 8 in the Southwestern Baghdad. Before we left the country, the FOB (Forward Operating Base) was renamed Camp Ferrin Huggins. Huggins was another 82nd soldier from the 325 AIR, who was killed a couple of months before Ferrin, Londono, and Brattain. Since they were the two senior NCOs killed in that sector, their names were given for the camp and a memorial marker was placed behind the BDE HQs building.
Ferrin, Londono, Brattain, and Knell were riding along a canal access road at around 2am conducting a security patrol when an IED exploded under the road on which they were traveling. Ferrin, Londono, and Brattain were killed instantly and Knell was severely wounded. It happened at grid 487726 between the Nazi Usfur and Jabbur Districts in the rural area just south of Baghdad, three kilometers west of the Tigris River. We had problems in that area for weeks leading up to the event. The enemy had fired rockets and mortars from that vicinity at Camp Falcon and into the Green Zone. SSG Ferrin was patrolling in order to interdict the hostiles who’d been rocketing and mortaring our bases. The blast was catastrophic and the IED was believed to be over 100 pounds of high explosives. How Knell lived through the blast is beyond our understanding, but he has long term damage from the concussion of the blast. A lot of people don’t realize how damaging the concussions from IEDs are. The blasts will not only blow your eardrums, but for many soldiers the brain is damaged beyond recovery. You think you were lucky because you see your boys and there are no physical marks or visible damage, but reality sets in when you realize the damage was invisible.
This ceremony was also held at Camp Falcon, now Ferrin Huggins. It is a picture of me paying my last respects. The second picture is of the shadow boxes with their pictures, weapons, boots, and awards that we use in the memorial ceremony. During the ceremony soldiers put little mementos of their friendship on the shadow box, and everything is sent home with the bodies to their families.