It was already 90 degrees at the Afghanistan base when Steve Beaty, a Montana soldier, spotted an Afghan in uniform approaching wearing a winter coat.
Just one of the details shared by Beaty about the suicide bomb attack that killed the daughter of a St. Petersburg assistant police chief, Army Spc. Brittany Gordon. Gordon was assigned to a Lewis-McChord Stryker brigade and on her first deployment in Afghanistan. The blast that killed Gordon injured a dozen soldiers including Beaty.
Beaty, his foot wrapped in a cast with two pins holding it together, still has shrapnel that in his leg and chest that will be left alone.
Attacks like this one have U.S. soldiers nervous in Afghanistan.
“The insider threat is a big deal over there,” Beaty said. “That’s the biggest thing we have to fight. The Taliban doesn’t wear uniforms. It’s tough – you have to stay on edge, on alert.”
Beaty said the bomber detonated a vest full of shrapnel as he raised his weapon.
A dozen people were wounded and some killed immediately. Beaty witnessed a CIA officer carrying wounded to safety, unaware he had a back wound that would kill him within the hour.
You can read Beaty’s full account of the attack HERE.