This past Sunday I received a call from Mike Brennan, Josh's dad. He began relating the story below. When he got to the part about 4 Taliban being captured but before he got to the details of exactly who was captured the hair stood up on my arms and I said, "DO NOT tell me....." over and over as Mike continued to talk. I heard what he said but had to ask him to say it again.
PVT Joseph Brennan's father sent the following to me in an email. I have his permission to share and have also checked to assure there is no OPSEC violation within.
I want to share a bit of what may seem an unbelievable story with you. The story starts with our "Hero Sgt. Joshua C. Brennan". Josh served with the Army 173rd Airborne, 2-503. Josh was killed in action on Oct. 26th, 2007. Three days prior to Josh's death we had a Marine recruiter in our home. Joseph wanted to serve in the military and was looking at the Marines. Josh's death did not change Joseph's mind about serving his country.
Approximately one year later Joseph and I, at the last minute, went to Italy along with other members of the family to have a HUGE party for the guys from Josh's unit. Joseph was 3 weeks from going to basic training with the Marines. While talking to Josh's friends, they convinced him he should go into the Army instead. Joseph told me later that he wanted to follow in Josh's footsteps and go to Airborne school. Well, he went into the Army in May of 2009 and graduated from Airborne school in early October.
We said our goodbyes to Joseph on Oct. 26 (the 2nd anniversary of Josh's death) and he was off to Vincenza, Italy where the 173rd is based. Joseph joined up with the same platoon that Josh served in and met several of Josh's friends in the platoon. We then learned Joseph would be deployed to Afghanistan. Out of about a 1000 soldiers Joseph's platoon (about 30 to 40 soldiers) and another platoon were chosen to go to Camp Joyce. Camp Joyce is in the Kunar province where Josh was ambushed and killed. Joseph arrived just before Christmas.
Joseph has been on several missions since his arrival to Camp Joyce. This past weekend the Brennan family celebrated Christmas at a hotel in Chicago. Saturday night we had a toast to Josh's memory. About that same time, we later found out, Joseph was on another mission. It would of been early Sunday morning Afghan time. Joseph called me on Sunday at about 11:00 am as we were driving home from Chicago. We talked a little and Joseph said "Dad tell Uncle Mike we got him!" I didn't understand "Got who", I said. "We captured the guy who planned the ambush attack that killed Josh and Hugo Mendoza." "What ?????", I could not believe what I was hearing. "Be sure you tell Uncle Mike, we got the guy", he repeated. I was speechless.
I immediately called Mike and told him the news. He couldn't believe his ears. What is the possibility that Joseph would be taking part in a mission that captured the guy who planned the ambush on that day that took Josh and Hugo's lives and on the same day we were having our family party? Could this be true? Mike, after hearing this story, has verified it through a very reliable military source. I am still shaking my head as to the chain of events that led to the capture of this "High value target". Oh, by the way, this guy captured is not one that will be "Captured and released." we have been told. We are so proud of all our men and women serving our country and we are so Proud of Joseph and his participation in capturing this murderer. The whole platoon did a great job. God's finger prints are all over this story. Please pray for our troops. I just had to share.
God's Blessing to you all,
Terry and Laurie Brennan (parents of PVT Joseph Brennan)
“There are no mistakes, no coincidences. All events are blessings given to us to learn from.”
Let's just review some of the facts
- SGT Brennan was wounded in an ambush on 25 Oct 07 and died of his wounds on 26 Oct 07.
- PVT Brennan left the US for his duty station on 26 Oct 09 (on the 2 year anniversary of his cousin's death)
- PVT Brennan was assigned to the same Brigade, Battalion, Company AND Platoon as his cousin had been
- PVT Brennan's platoon was chosen to go on the mission that would end in the capture of the high value target who masterminded the ambush that resulted in SGT Brennan's death.
- At the time the Brennan family was together for their annual Christmas gathering and toasting SGT Brennan's memory, PVT Brennan was on a patrol that captured the mastermind of the ambush that resulted in SGT Brennans' death.
Mike forwarded the email from Terry with this comment:
This is a story that my brother Terry wrote regarding the high value target Josephs unit the 173rd Airborne caught over the weekend. If you never thought that Josh was up there overlooking all of them before you will now. This is just incredible.
I believe Mike. I believe.