Special Forces NCO, EOD Tech Killed in Afghanistan

March 24, 2019Neil Fotre
Coffee or Die Photo

Two U.S. military service members were killed conducting operations in Afghanistan on Friday, according to a statement from NATO’s Resolute Support.

The names of the fallen military personnel were released Saturday by the Pentagon. Specialist Joseph Collette of Lancaster, Ohio, 29, and Sergeant First Class Will Lindsay, 33, of Cortez, Colorado, were killed during a joint operation between U.S. and Afghan forces in Kunduz Province, according to U.S. defense officials.  

Collette, an explosive ordnance disposal technician, was assigned to the 242nd Ordnance Battalion, 71st Explosive Ordnance Group, based out of Fort Carson, Colorado. Lindsay, an assistant operations and intelligence sergeant, was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), also based out of Fort Carson.

Specialist Joseph Collette.

This was Collette’s first deployment since enlisting in the Army in 2010.

“The 71st Ordnance Group is deeply saddened by the loss of Specialist Joseph P. Collette. We extend our deepest sympathies and condolences to his family and friends,” stated U.S. Army Colonel David K. Green, commander of the 71st Ordnance Group.

Lindsay enlisted in the Army in 2004. He had previously deployed multiple times to Iraq as well as having completed tours in Tajikistan and Afghanistan, according to Army spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Loren Bymer.

“Will was one of the best in our formation, with more than a decade of service in the Regiment at all levels of noncommissioned officer leadership. We will focus now on supporting his family and honoring his legacy and sacrifice,” said Colonel Lawrence Ferguson, commander of the 10th Special Forces Group.

Sergeant First Class Will Lindsay.

The recent fatalities bring the number of U.S. deaths in Afghanistan to four this year.

The Taliban appear to have claimed responsibility for the deaths of the service members. Statements made by Zabihullah Mujahid alluded to the likelihood that the casualties were a result of fighting in Kunduz. According to Mujahid, insurgents killed three Americans and nine Afghan commandos. However, it is difficult to confirm Mujahid’s claims as the Taliban often exaggerate battlefield reports.    

These casualties come at a time when U.S. envoy Zalmay Khalilzad recently finished a 13-day session of negotiations with the Taliban earlier this month.

The discussions, held in Qatar, are reported to have produced two draft agreements regarding the withdrawal of U.S. troops. According to Khalilzad, the agreements also guarantee that Afghanistan will not become a safe haven for terrorists.

The Taliban refuses to negotiate with the Afghan government in Kabul, historically referring to the officials as “puppets.”

Presently, 14,000 U.S. troops are conducting operations in Afghanistan, supporting the Afghan forces as they continue to fight the Taliban and the Islamic State.

Thirteen U.S. service members were killed in Afghanistan in 2018.


Neil Fotre
Neil Fotre

Neil Fotre is a contributing writer for Coffee or Die, and former U.S. Army Armor Officer. He has served operational deployments in South Korea and Afghanistan. Neil earned a master’s degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. He covers military and veteran community topics. His writing has been featured in the Military Times, Forbes, the Daily Beast, Task and Purpose and Business Insider. In between pounding his fingers on a keyboard, he is constantly glugging away on seltzer water and sipping on dark roast… pinky out.

More from Coffee or Die Magazine
Coffee Or Die Photo
From the Team Room to Team Room Design: An Operator’s Creative Journey

BRCC partners with Team Room Design for an exclusive T-shirt release!

Coffee Or Die Photo
Get Your Viking On: The Exclusive 30 Sec Out BRCC Shirt Club Design

Thirty Seconds Out has partnered with BRCC for an exclusive shirt design invoking the God of Winter.

Grizzly Forge BRCC shirt
Limited Edition: Grizzly Forge Blades on an Awesome BRCC Shirt

Lucas O'Hara of Grizzly Forge has teamed up with BRCC for a badass, exclusive Shirt Club T-shirt design featuring his most popular knife and tiomahawk.

BRCC Limited Edition Josh Raulerson Blackbeard Skull Shirt
From Naval Service to Creative Canvas: BRCC Veteran Artist Josh Raulerson

Coffee or Die sits down with one of the graphic designers behind Black Rifle Coffee's signature look and vibe.

Medal of Honor is held up.
Biden Will Award Medal of Honor to Army Helicopter Pilot Who Rescued Soldiers in Vietnam Firefight

Biden will award the Medal of Honor to a Vietnam War Army helicopter pilot who risked his life to save a reconnaissance team from almost certain death.

dear jack mandaville
Dear Jack: Which Historic Battle Would You Want To Witness?

Ever wonder how much Jack Mandaville would f*ck sh*t up if he went back in time? The American Revolution didn't even see him coming.

west point time capsule
West Point Time Capsule Yields Centuries-Old Coins

A nearly 200-year-old West Point time capsule that at first appeared to yield little more than dust contains hidden treasure, the US Military Academy said.

  • About Us
  • Privacy Policy
  • Careers
Contact Us
Contact Us
© 2024 Coffee or Die Magazine. All Rights Reserved