Special Operations Task Force-71, Afghanistan, 2007

By Alex Quade, War Reporter, Honorary SFA National Lifetime Member

Sentinel readers are getting this exclusive “sneak peek” at SOTF-71’s photos of some of the ops leading to, during, and after “that Chinook shootdown op” in Sangin and Northern Helmand, Afghanistan, spring/summer 2007. “We knew what we were facing in Helmand Province,” SOTF-71 CDR Pat Mahaney said. “It was extremely kinetic,” ODA-726 CDR Pat Nelson added. 7SFG ODAs engaged in more than 235-TICs (troops in contact) during their 217-day rotation. Unfortunately, three 1st Batt, 7SFG Green Berets were KIA during the intense fighting and high ops tempo. Afghanistan was the most dangerous place on the planet at the time — a fact most were unaware of, as public focus had shifted to Iraq. (Read Alex Quade’s stories in the August 2021 Sentinel, and her upcoming book to learn more.)


SSG Michael D Thomas

SSG Michael D. Thomas, 18B
(KIA 27 APR 2007)

SGT Timothy Padgett

SGT Timothy Padgett, 18D
(KIA 08 MAY 2007)

SSG Joshua Whitaker

SSG Michael D. Thomas, 18B
(KIA 27 APR 2007)

Special Operations in Action

About the Author:

Alex Quade is an award-winning war reporter and documentary filmmaker who prefers flying under the radar downrange and letting her life’s work speak for itself. Former Commanding General of USASFC, and SOCEUR, MG (ret.) Michael Repass describes Alex’s work this way: “War correspondent Alex Quade is this generation’s Joe Galloway, who tells intensely personal stories. Alex nails the essence of sacrifice found in America’s Special Forces operators and their families. Alex Quade is the real deal. She’s spent more time with Special Forces operators in combat zones and back home after deployments than any other reporter. Alex knows them and their families, and is uniquely qualified to tell their intensely-lived, extraordinary stories.” Hachette is publishing Alex Quade’s book on this operation. For more info: alexquade.com

Alex and Maggie

Photo: Alex and Maggie

Photo: Alex and Joe Galloway