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Army widow: Finish the mission

March 5, 2009 12:18:28 PM PST
It was seven years ago this week that the first American soldier was killed in Afghanistan after September 11.Now, his widow is watching President Obama ramp up the U.S. mission in that country.

"It's hard to think that more men are going over there - and women - that may not come home," said Sheila Harriman.

Her husband Stanley Harriman was a Special Forces warrant officer. Sheila remembers what he said after the 911 attacks on the United States.

"He said a lot of people are going to die from this. There's going to be a lot of bloodshed from this," she recalled.

It was seven years ago on Monday that Stanley died. Sheila says the hardest part was explaining his death to her daughter who was five at the time.

"And I called her to me and I said 'Darby, daddy's not coming home,' and she said 'Why?' and I said 'Because Daddy is now in heaven and he's not coming home. Daddy's been shot.'"

Several months would pass before Sheila would learn her husband was killed by friendly fire.

Shortly after his death, she met President Bush. She says if she could speak to President Obama today, she would tell him the same thing she told President Bush seven years ago.

"And I said 'President Bush, I want you to finish this mission. Do not let Stanley's death be in vain,'" she said.

The Special Forces soldier from Wade is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.


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