Monday, June 21, 2010

Army Staff Sgt. Brandon M. Silk

Remember Our Heroes

Army Staff Sgt. Brandon M. Silk, 25, of Orono, Maine

SSgt. Silk was assigned to the 5th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 101st Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.; died June 21, 2010 near Gaza Ridge, Afghanistan, when the UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter in which he was traveling made a hard landing.

Played football, ran track in high school
The Associated Press

AUGUSTA, Maine — Officials say a soldier from Maine who served as a Black Hawk helicopter crew chief has been killed in Afghanistan.

Rep. Chellie Pingree, D-Maine, said 25-year-old Sgt. Brandon Silk of Orono died June 21 from injuries suffered during a hard helicopter landing. Silk served with the 101st Airborne Division out of Fort Campbell, Ky.

Orono High School Assistant Principal Bob Sinclair said Silk played football and ran track while in high school, and joined the military upon graduation.

The Defense Department has not released details on his death. The governor said he will order flags flown at half-staff on the day of Silk’s funeral.

Working on Black Hawks was a dream come true
The Associated Press

Brandon Silk’s favorite movie growing up was “Top Gun.”

It was one of his inspirations for joining the Army and becoming a Black Hawk crew chief for the 101st Airborne Division based at Fort Campbell, Ky.

Silk, of Orono, Maine, enlisted shortly after graduating from Orono High School in 2003. Working on Black Hawk helicopters and accompanying pilots on missions was a dream come true. Silk loved his job so much he turned down a promotion to a desk job.

He served in Korea, Iraq and twice in Afghanistan. He wasn’t required to go on the second Afghanistan tour, said his father, Mark Silk.

“But he had been training all these other guys. He didn’t want them to go without him,” his father said.

Silk, 25, died June 21 after a hard landing in a helicopter near Gaza Ridge, Afghanistan.

“He was one of those rare individuals that could make a bad day good and a good day that much better,” former colleague Jared Adams posted on a Facebook page honoring Silk. “He made me a better crew chief, a better soldier and a better person.”

He also leaves behind his wife, Kayce Silk; a stepson, Brayden Browning; and his mother, Lynn Silk.

Army Staff Sgt. Brandon M. Silk was killed in action on 6/21/10

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