BOSTON (CBS) – Sgt. 1st Class Eric M. Emond, a Boston native and founder of Massachusetts Fallen Heroes, was among three U.S. service members killed in a roadside bombing Tuesday in Afghanistan.
The 39-year-old was part of a U.S. military convoy that was hit by a powerful bomb in Ghazni, Afghanistan, where U.S. Special Forces have been working with Afghan commandos against the Taliban. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing.
According to CBS News, the vehicle blown up in the attack was one like an MRAP, which stands for Mine Resistant Ambush Protected. They are designed specifically to defend against roadside bombs.
Army Capt. Andrew Patrick Ross, 29, of Lexington, Virginia and Air Force Staff Sgt. Dylan J. Elchin, 25, of Hookstown, Pennsylvania were also killed.
Emond and Ross were assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne) at Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
“Andrew and Eric were invaluable members and leaders in 3rd Special Forces Group and the special operations community. Our most heartfelt condolences go out to the families of these brave men,” said Col. Nathan Prussian.
Emond helped start the local non-profit Massachusetts Fallen Heroes which helps Gold Star families and fellow veterans.
“Eric was a part of Massachusetts Fallen Heroes from day one. He was in the room at Florian Hall developing our mission, creating our logo, and ultimately designing our memorial from the back of a napkin,” said Dan Magoon, Executive Director of Massachusetts Fallen Heroes. “This organization would not exist if it wasn’t for Eric’s commitment and dedication, along with the support of his wife and sister.”
Emond had more than 21 years of military service, having served in the Marine Corps and the Army. This was his seventh overseas tour. He is survived by his wife and three children.
Congressman Seth Moulton said Massachusetts lost a hero. “SFC Eric Emond served his country bravely and honorably both overseas and at home,” Moulton said.
A total of 18 U.S. service members have been killed in Afghanistan in 2018.