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January 8, 2014....The day life changed forever

MULEY51

Forever Hunting
I was at work when my cellphone rang. On the other end was my daughter-in-law bringing me the news I never wanted to hear....there had been a helicopter crash in the Atlantic. Of the five man crew, four had been found with two being alive and two dead. The fifth man was my son Sean (formerly ETC2NA on here) and he was missing. My heart sank and I bawled like a baby, knowing in my heart he went down the the helo. It took the Navy divers six days to locate his remains and bring him to the surface...he was found in the remains of the cockpit, still strapped in his seat. Standing on the pier, watching his flag-draped body being carried off the rescue ship, I thought my heart would stop.

As the one year anniversary date arrives, I believe the pain is just as intense. I think I miss him more now than ever. Those who say it will get better with time, well I hope they are right because I don't want to feel like this for the rest of my life.

I know he would not want me to say this, but I'm angry beyond words with the Navy he loved. We had talked about it several times and he believed he could land his helo no matter what, but the one thing he worried about was maintenance. After reading the Navy's "incident report" it was clear, and was acknowledged by the Navy, that a lack of proper maintenance is exactly what got him killed. He had zero chance of escaping the onboard fire.

God bless and keep you Son. You were and always will be my hero. I love you and miss you so much. Dad
 

Chayito702

Well-known member
Stay strong muley... time will heal the pain brother. Your son died doing what he loved best. I still remember the post where you gave us the heart breaking news. Rip Sean and Thank you for your service...
 

thewolfman

Well-known member
I m just honored that u shared your son with us on here... I myself lost 3 uncles just within the last 3 months.... All we can do is honor them and keep on...
 

fritojay

Well-known member
Muley I come from a navy family. My father, myself and one of my sons. I remember reading the news of the helo down and than sometime later you posting that it was Sean. I don't know you or Sean at all but that was heartbreaking. I do know that it won't ever be easier and time won't completely heal your pain. All I know is that you and your wife will perservire and go on. That is what we do. I think of you and Sean and know that many others do also.
Fair winds and following sea's sailor.
 

Common Sense

Well-known member
Yesterday I was at the shop and heard a noise. Looked up and saw a helicopter (not something I see on a daily basis here in the sticks).

I never met or talked to Sean in person, but every time I see a helicopter I think of him --- and I always will.
 

Bubblehide

Well-known member
Muley, it's an honor to have you share your loss with us. Clearly it was an unnecessary loss, and your anger is justified. Having no children, I can only imagine the pain you are in. God bless you, and Sean.
 

Bossbrott

Well-known member
Muley, Your son will be certainly missed in body but his spirit resides. I hope you and your family the best moving forward.

My father passed away the same day three years ago. I never thought I'd think about him so much after his passing. Sometimes I have a experience only he would appreciate, that's when we speak.

It's temporary my friend, we shall all be together again.
Until then, enjoy life, that's what our heroes would want.

You have plenty to be proud of, god bless you and your family.
 

k_rad

Well-known member
Thank you for sharing your sorrow here with us. I know It's little consolation but there are many great people on this forum that I would call friend. A lot of them are current and X-military and can at least empathize with you regarding the loss of your son. I for one can not even imagine loosing a son. My wife lost her dad (a marine) when she was just 14 and she said the pain never goes away but like the man said we go because it is what we do. Sending lots of love and prays to you and your family brother. Our honest heart felt condolences...
 

BelchFire

I speak fluent Vise-Grip
Admin
Muley,

Hold your head high; Sean would want you to do that and gave you every reason to be able to. He would expect you to grieve, but would want you to let go because Sean knows Christ and you will see him again. Don't lose sight of what Sean left behind, either. His wife and children needs you and they need for you to be strong; they've lost too.

Grief is such a raw emotion; I'm so sorry that your family has to bear this burden.

Lifting you up and asking for God's warm embrace for you and your family,
Belch
 

P304X4

Moderator
Moderator
Be strong in the Lord and know that you'll see your son and your dad again one day in Heaven where there is no pain or sorrow but only joy. As always, you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.
 
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MULEY51

Forever Hunting
I m just honored that u shared your son with us on here... I myself lost 3 uncles just within the last 3 months.... All we can do is honor them and keep on...
Very sorry for your loss.

2014 was a horrible year...first, my boy, then my FIL, then my MIL, then my Dad.

Sorry about your uncles. God rest them all.
 

MULEY51

Forever Hunting
Yesterday I was at the shop and heard a noise. Looked up and saw a helicopter (not something I see on a daily basis here in the sticks).

I never met or talked to Sean in person, but every time I see a helicopter I think of him --- and I always will.
Thanks CS.

We live near a Marine airfield and they fly the same helo, the 53, that Sean flew. They fly over our house every day. The wife is having a hard time with this, but there is nothing we can do...except move, which we are not going to do.
 

#1Predator

Well-known member
Our condolences to you and your family. We lost our son, Sgt. Benjamin Smith, at 11:45am, Thursday, March 21st, 2013. There are no words. The grieving process is bearable. A little less intense over time. Wounds heal but they leave scars. We cope with the loss but it's never completely out of our minds. Certain smells, sounds, phrases, sights, places, etc. can bring our emotions to the surface again. We let them come, shed more tears and move on comforted by the belief that we will see him again in a better place. I visit the Bakersfield National Cemetery twice a week. We support the cemetery and help with holiday presentations. See attached link.
http://www.jesseshunting.com/forums/showthread.php/241141-Bakersfield-National-Cemetery..-an-honor.
 


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