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Body of US general arrives at Dover Air Force Base

Body of US general killed in 'insider attack' in Afghanistan arrives at Dover Air Force Base
Posted on Aug. 7, 2014 at 12:00 a.m. | Updated on Aug. 7, 2014 at 9:51 a.m.

DOVER, Del. (AP) — The body of a two-star general killed in an Afghan “insider attack” arrived Thursday at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to be prepared for burial at Arlington National Cemetery.

A C-17 cargo plane carrying the body of Maj. Gen. Harold Greene, 55, landed under blue skies at the Dover base, home to the nation’s largest military mortuary.

Air Force chaplain Maj. Melvin K. Smith boarded the plane to offer a prayer. White-gloved soldiers then solemnly carried a flag-draped metal case with Greene’s remains to a waiting mortuary vehicle as Army Secretary John McHugh stood solemnly and Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno gave a farewell salute.

In an unusual step for casualty transfers at Dover, members of Greene’s family were escorted onto the plane at their request to thank members of the flight crew.

Greene is the highest-ranked U.S. officer to be killed in combat since 1970 during the Vietnam War. Greene, a 34-year U.S. Army veteran, also is the highest-ranked American officer killed in combat in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

An Afghan soldier killed Greene and wounded 15 other allied troops Tuesday, including a German general and two Afghan generals. The soldier who opened fire was subsequently killed in a shootout. There was no indication that Greene was specifically targeted.

An Afghan military official said Wednesday that the gunman, who went by the name Rafiqullah, hid in a bathroom with a NATO assault rifle, then opened fire when a group of officers from international forces passed by. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information. A second Afghan military official corroborated his account.

There has been no claim of responsibility in the shooting.

Associated Press writers Amir Shah in Kabul, Afghanistan, contributed to this report.




 FILE - In this Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2012 file photo, an ambulance departs Bellevue Hospital in New York where patients were being evacuated. When Superstorm Sandy slammed into the Northeast nearly two years ago, hospitals found themselves dealing with surges in patients, lost power supplies and employees who couldn’t get to work _ problems that a new federal report finds they were not prepared to handle. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Service’s Inspector General Office released a study Wednesday Sept. 17, 2014 on the emergency preparedness and response during the storm at 172 hospitals in the hardest-hit areas of New York, most of Connecticut and all of New Jersey. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

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