Flags around New York will fly at half-staff Monday to honor an Army medic and nurse from Spencerport who died this week while serving in Afghanistan.
According to a statement from his family, U.S. Army Capt. Bruce Kevin Clark, 43, died Monday while on a Skype call with his wife, Susan Orellana-Clark. His body arrived at Dover Air Force Base Thursday night.
The cause of Clark’s death has not been released by the Department of Defense.
“Bruce’s wife tragically witnessed her husband’s death during one of their regular Skype video-chats on Monday,” according to the statement, attributed to Clark’s wife and family.
“At the time of the incident, the family was hoping for a rescue and miracle, but later learned that it was not to be. Although the circumstances were unimaginable, Bruce’s wife and extended family will be forever thankful that he and his wife were together in his last moments.”
The family, the statement said, is awaiting the results of a military investigation into Clark’s death.
A funeral is being arranged in Spencerport, with a memorial in Michigan, where he was born.
Wife saw husband, a Beaumont Army Medical Center nurse in Afghanistan, die while on Skype chat
›› Update: Death of Beaumont Army Medical Center nurse during Skye chat not combat-related
›› Guestbook: Offer condolences to friends and familyThe wife of a Beaumont Army Medical Center nurse who died Monday in Afghanistan said the incident took place while she was talking with her husband through Skype’s video chat.
Army officials have not released the cause of death for Capt. Bruce Kevin Clark, 43, of Spencerport, N.Y.
A statement from the family said they are waiting for results of a military investigation.
“Bruce’s wife tragically witnessed her husband’s death during one of their regular Skype video chats,” the statement said.
“At the time of the incident, the family was hoping for a rescue and miracle, but later learned that it was not to be,” according to the family’s statement.
“Although the circumstances were unimaginable, Bruce’s wife and extended family will be forever thankful that he and his wife were together in his last moments.”
Beaumont Army Medical
Center officials could not be reached for comment on Thursday.U.S. and Australian special operations soldiers in Afghanistan honored Clark this week, according to the statement.
Clark was assigned to A Company, Troop Command at Beaumont.
He deployed in March to support U.S. and coalition efforts in Afghanistan.
Clark’s awards and decorations include the Army Commendation Award, Mili tary Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the Army Service Medal.
Clark had two children.
His family is planning funeral services in Spencerport, N.Y.
A memorial service will also be conducted in Addison, Mich.
Wife saw bullet hole while Skyping with soldier
DALLAS — An Army nurse who lived in Spencerport for six years showed no alarm or discomfort before suddenly collapsing during a Skype video chat from Afghanistan with his wife, who saw a bullet hole in a closet behind him, his family said Sunday.
Capt. Bruce Kevin Clark’s family released a statement describing what his wife saw in the video feed recording her husband’s death.
“Clark was suddenly knocked forward,” the statement said. “The closet behind him had a bullet hole in it. The other individuals, including a member of the military, who rushed to the home of CPT Clark’s wife also saw the hole and agreed it was a bullet hole.”
The statement says the Skype link remained open for two hours on April 30 as family and friends in the U.S. and Afghanistan tried to get Clark help.
“After two hours and many frantic phone calls by Mrs. Clark, two military personnel arrived in the room and appeared to check his pulse, but provided no details about his condition to his wife,” the statement said.
The Pentagon has said the cause of Clark’s death remains under investigation.
In the statement, Susan Orellana-Clark said she was providing details of what she saw “to honor my husband and dispel the inaccurate information and supposition promulgated by other parties.”
Clark, 43, grew up in Michigan and previously lived in Spencerport, his wife’s hometown. Clark served at the Spencerport Fire Department from 2000 to 2001 and he and his wife regularly attended St. Mary’s Church in Rochester.
Clark worked for four years at Highland Hospital, then enrolled in a nursing program at The College at Brockport and graduated in 2006.
He joined the Army in 2006 and was stationed in Hawaii before he was assigned to the William Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso. He deployed to Afghanistan in March.
Clarence Davis, spokesman for William Beaumont Army Medical Center, declined to comment on Clark’s family’s statement.
Clark’s body was returned Thursday to Dover Air Force Base. A funeral is being arranged in Spencerport.
He is survived by his wife and two daughters, aged 3 and 9.
Wife Saw Bullet Hole While Skyping With Soldier: Wife Saw Bullet Hole While Skyping With Soldier
U.S. not reporting all Afghan attacks on American and other foreign troops
U.S. officials say that in most cases the Afghans who turn their guns on their supposed allies act as a result of personal grievances against the coalition
WASHINGTON — The military is under-reporting the number of times that Afghan soldiers and police open fire on American and other foreign troops.
The U.S.-led coalition routinely reports each time an American or other foreign soldier is killed by an Afghan in uniform. But The Associated Press has learned it does not report insider attacks in which the Afghan wounds — or misses — his U.S. or allied target. It also doesn’t report the wounding of troops who were attacked alongside those who were killed.
Such attacks reveal a level of mistrust and ill will between the U.S.-led coalition and its Afghan counterparts in an increasingly unpopular war. The U.S. and its military partners are working more closely with Afghan troops in preparation for handing off security responsibility to them by the end of 2014.
In recent weeks an Afghan soldier opened fire on a group of American soldiers but missed the group entirely. The Americans quickly shot him to death. Not a word about this was reported by the International Security Assistance Force, or ISAF, as the coalition is formally known. It was disclosed to the AP by a U.S. official who was granted anonymity in order to give a fuller picture of the “insider” problem.
ISAF also said nothing about last week’s attack in which two Afghan policemen in Kandahar province fired on U.S. soldiers, wounding two. Reporters learned of it from Afghan officials and from U.S. officials in Washington. The two Afghan policemen were shot to death by the Americans present.
Just last Wednesday, an attack that killed a U.S. Army special forces soldier, Staff Sgt. Andrew T. Brittonmihalo, 25, of Simi Valley, Calif., also wounded three other American soldiers. The death was reported by ISAF as an insider attack, but it made no mention of the wounded — or that an Afghan civilian also was killed.
The attacker was an Afghan special forces soldier who opened fire with a machine gun at a base in Kandahar province. He was killed by return fire.
That attack apparently was the first by a member of the Afghan special forces, who are more closely vetted than conventional Afghan forces and are often described by American officials as the most effective and reliable in the Afghan military.
Coalition officials do not dispute that such non-fatal attacks happen, but they have not provided a full accounting.