Christopher Rosacker
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September 3, 2013
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Nevada Union grad, soldier survives Afghan insurgent attack

A Nevada Union High School graduate who survived a Taliban attack on a base in Afghanistan is mourning the death of a fellow Army soldier, according to his family.

Patrick “Pat” McTighe was reportedly among a group of U.S. Army forces that the New York Times reported were stationed at an international military base in Ghazni, Afghanistan.

Taliban forces breached the base’s outer perimeter after they detonated a truck bomb Aug. 28, according to his mother, Annette McTighe, an administrative assistant at Nevada City School District.

The ensuing battle left four Afghan police officers, two other Afghans and seven insurgents dead, along with injuring dozens, the New York Times reported, as Afghan and Western troops squelched the attack.

“It was a large attack on the base,” said Annette McTighe.

“That in itself is enough to put you at unease … I don’t know the whole thing, and I don’t know if I want to.”

During the assault, at least three western forces were wounded and one member of the U.S. Army, Staff Sgt. Michael H. Ollis, was killed, according to The Express-Times, an Easton, Pa., newspaper.

Ollis was a friend of Pat McTighe’s, his mother said.

“I think it’s difficult because your mind not only worries about your own son, but also the other family that lost a child,” she said.

“That stayed with me for a few days — that it could have been me getting that phone call.”

Ollis, a New York resident, will be honored at a candlelight vigil scheduled for today by the Staten Island Veteran Group at the Staten Island Railway station, according to its Facebook page.

Pat McTighe graduated from the U.S. Army Infantry School at Fort Benning, Ga., in March 2011, according to The Union’s archives.

In addition to the usual nine weeks of basic training, McTighe went through an additional five weeks of specialized infantry training.

He recently earned his sergeant’s stripes, Annette McTighe said.

News of the attack reached the infantryman’s family as they were already lamenting that his return from deployment was pushed back from September to October, McTighe said.

“I have gotten a lot of support from friends and coworkers,” she said.

“I just have to trust that he is being taken care of.”

The family is also turning to their faith for support, McTighe said, noting that a chaplain had been made available to their son.

McTighe said her family is planning a trip to New York to welcome their son home from his deployment.

To contact Staff Writer Christopher Rosacker, email crosacker@theunion.com or call 530-477-4236.

“I don’t know the whole thing and I don’t know if I want to.”
Annette McTighe
on her son’s survival of a Taliban attack on Afghanistan


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The Union Updated Sep 4, 2013 01:33PM Published Sep 4, 2013 10:02AM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.