By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Deaths steel family's resolve
Placeholder Image
CLOVIS, Calif. — A father who lost a second son last week in the Iraq war said Thursday the support his family has received has helped them sustain their belief in the United States’ efforts to combat global terrorism.
“The nation’s at war,” Jeff Hubbard, the soldier’s father, a retired police officer, said. “We just want people to support the nation and what it’s trying to get accomplished by making the world a better place.”
Army Cpl. Nathan Hubbard, 21, died Aug. 22 in a helicopter crash. He had enlisted at age 19 while still grieving for his older brother, Marine Lance Cpl. Jared Hubbard, who was killed by a roadside bomb in Ramadi in 2004.
A third brother, Army Spc. Jason Hubbard, 33, was part of the platoon that recovered Nathan’s body from the crash site. After Nathan’s death, Jason was sent home from his unit and was ordered not to redeploy to a hostile fire zone.
Both brothers were in the same platoon on a scouting mission observing a treacherous stretch of road south of Kirkuk, Iraq, the day of the crash, the surviving son said. Jason’s team left the area in a Black Hawk first; another soldier aboard that helicopter saw from the air that the second aircraft had crashed.
“We kind of went into a holding pattern over this downed bird,” Jason Hubbard told reporters, his voice steady. “It was at that point where I began to really fear that was the other helicopter that picked up our team.”
His team was then assigned to return to the desert and secure the site, which meant removing weapons, equipment and the bodies of their comrades.
“I couldn’t participate in that,” said Jason, wearing his dress uniform. “I knew Nathan was in there. I tried several times to kind of gather myself, but I just, I couldn’t.”
Sign up for our e-newsletters