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Local service member mothers in California hold vigil for those killed in Kabul


By Jessica Harrington

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    FRESNO, California (KFSN) — Flags fly at half-staff Thursday night in our nation’s capitol as the country mourns the loss of 13 United States service members.

They were killed in two explosions outside the Kabul Airport.

It happened hours after an urgent warning from the US embassy in Kabul about a terror threat.

President Joe Biden issuing a warning Thursday to ISIS-K which is claiming responsibility for the attack.

“We will not forgive. We will not forget. We will hunt you down and make you pay,” President Biden said.

The weight of the attack felt right here at home.

The Central Valley Blue Star Moms held a candlelight vigil in Clovis for the fallen military members.

“We just want to extend our thoughts and prayers to the families out there. This is very close to home, as we have children serving in the military,” said the Marisol Gonzalez, the president of the Central Valley Blue Star Moms.

Lisa Bailey, the vice president of the Central Valley Blue Star Moms said she couldn’t imagine what some families are going through waiting to hear if their loved one is alive.

“We just want them to know we’re with you. All you need to do is reach out to us and we’ll support you any way we can,” said Bailey.

The Pentagon estimates there are about 1,000 American citizens still in Afghanistan.

Eric Olsen, a 10-year army veteran who lives in Fresno, is doing what he can to help get them out.

“People are sending me contact information with people that are on the ground in Afghanistan that are trying to get out of the country. I’m getting information to American forces that are in country trying to get people out,” said Olsen.

He and a team of others from across the country are using messenger apps to communicate with contacts.

Currently, they’re working to help two large families who are still on the ground.

“There are tens — hundreds of thousands, probably, that have helped us over the years, and we’re doing our little part to try to help them,” Olsen said.

Olsen said one of the most important things someone can do if they have family or friends still in Afghanistan trying to get out is to contact their local lawmakers.

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