This Veteran’s Day weekend, Clay and I had the opportunity to attend the ABC News Corp. release party for Jake Tapper’s latest book, The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor*. The book chronicles the rise and fall of Combat Outpost Keating, a military outpost established by Clay’s unit, 3-71 Cav, during their February 2006 – June 2007 deployment and named after 3-71 Cav fallen soldier, Ben Keating. Jake Tapper explores the story of how the outpost came to be and how in October 2009, it was overrun by insurgents, resulting in eight 3-61 Cav soldiers being killed. The book goes into great detail about the soldiers of 3-71 Cav, 1-91 Cav, and 3-61 Cav, weaving their personal stories in with the mission.
The Saturday night event was held at the Newseum, located along the mall. Weston spent the night with Megan, Mike, and Mikey up in Pennsylvania so Clay and I could enjoy the festivities without having to worry about getting home to the little guy. And enjoy we did.
A handful of our old 3-71 Cav friends were in attendance, in addition to soldiers from 1-91 Cav and 3-61 Cav, and media personalities, so it was quite the night. After the event, members from 3-71 Cav met up at Elephant and Castle on Pennsylvania Ave and the party continued into the following morning.
I thought it was outstanding that Jake Tapper invited soldiers from 3-71 Cav, 1-91 Cav, and 3-61 Cav to attend the event. Of course not everyone could attend but the small sampling of soldiers who were present (pictured above with Jake Tapper), in addition to Gold Star wives and mothers, reminded the non-military attendees of why he wrote the book in the first place.
Kamdesh, Afghanistan – September 2006
To all veterans of past and present wars, thank you.
* I have not read the book. I have read excerpts concerning the helicopter crash and find myself unable to read further, therefore I do not feel qualified to give the book a legitimate review.