Bruce A MacFarlane
July 6, 2012
Died in Kandahar, Afghanistan.
|Capt. Bruce A. MacFarlane, 46, of Oviedo, Florida, died July 6, in Kandahar, Afghanistan. MacFarlane was assigned to the 1186th Transportation Company, 831st Transportation Battalion, Jacksonville, Fla. He leaves his wife, Kristina, and two children, Conner and Chloe. While overseas, Capt. MacFarlane emailed his wife Kristina every day. When she had not heard from him on Friday, she sent an email about 3 p.m. to check on him. Two hours later, soldiers came to her home to inform her about his death.|
|From The Orlando Sentinel orolandosentinel.com 07/08/12:
Oviedo soldier dies in Afghanistan
8:47 p.m. EST, July 8, 2012|
By Leslie Postal and David Breen, Orlando Sentinel
A U.S. Army captain from Oviedo died in Afghanistan on Friday about three months after his Army Reserve unit was mobilized.
Bruce A. MacFarlane, 46, died in Kandahar, according to the Department of Defense, which did not provide information on how he died.
He was assigned to the 1186th Transportation Company, 831st Transportation Battalion, which is based in Jacksonville.
"He was a great guy, good family guy," said Keith Marang, who lives next door and said he met MacFarlane when both families moved into their new homes in 2008. "I was just floored when I heard the news."
He said MacFarlane, befitting his military career, was clean-cut and fit and looked younger than his age. He and his wife have two children, a son and a daughter, Marang said, adding that he thought they were in their early teens. He said the family moved to Oviedo from DeLand.
A person who answered the door at the family's large, modern home Sunday afternoon said they were not available, and she was not authorized to release any information. She said she was a friend of the family, and they'd been devastated by the news.
MacFarlane, who spent 12 years on active duty, was very patriotic, with an American flag always flying from his home, his neighbor said. Several small flags and red, white and blue pinwheels decorated the flower pots at the front door Sunday, presumably from the Fourth of July holiday last week.
Until his recent deployment, MacFarlane ran a pool business, and he spent last summer installing his own family's backyard pool, working hour after hour in the heat to complete it with "remarkable" attention to detail, Marang said.
Once finished, "it was absolutely gorgeous," he said, with travertine tile, a hot tub at one end and a fire pit at the other, and three flower beds with stacked stone behind it. MacFarlane had said he hoped that this summer the pool would be a place where his children and their friends would hang out.
Bruce MacFarlane is listed as the manager of Outdoor Living Pools & Patios, with addresses in DeBary and Oviedo, on the Florida Department of State's website. The social networking business site LinkedIn indicates MacFarlane attended the University of Central Florida from 1989 to 1991.
MacFarlane enlisted in the Army in 1988 and was commissioned as an officer in 1991 after going through an ROTC program, according to Maj. Annmarie Daneker, media relations officer for the U.S. Army Reserve Command at Fort Bragg, N.C.
The Tennessee native was promoted to captain in 1996 and then released from active duty in 2000. Daneker said the records she had did not provide details about his relationship with the Army between the end of his active-duty time and his deployment this year.
MacFarlane was mobilized for deployment to Afghanistan as a member of the Army Reserve in early April, she said.
Marang said he'd been told MacFarlane's relatives were on their way Sunday to Delaware. Military families go to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to take custody of their loved ones' remains, but Daneker said she could not confirm the MacFarlane family's trip or that the base was their destination.
As of Friday, there had been 2,020 U.S. military deaths — 1,593 in combat — in Afghanistan as part of "Operation Enduring Freedom," the defense department said.
|The Florida Times-Union jacksonville.com 07/09/12:
Jacksonville-based soldier who died in Afghanistan leaves wife, 2 children
By William Browning Mon, Jul 9, 2012 @ 5:16 pm | updated Tue, Jul 10, 2012 @ 8:20 am
Not long after Capt. Bruce Macfarlane's Army Reserve unit mobilized in April, his wife contacted First United Methodist Church of Oviedo.
Kristina Macfarlane lives in the Seminole County town and hoped the church's military support group would support her husband while he was in Afghanistan. The group began sending Macfarlane care packages.
An envelope came to the church from Afghanistan on Thursday. It was addressed to Liz Whitley, who had been sending the packages, and inside was a gift from Macfarlane: a picture of his unit.
"I had never met him, but I felt like he was somebody I would like," Whitley said.
Kristina Macfarlane was going to come Sunday and, using the photograph, point her husband out to Whitley.
Instead, she called Whitley early Saturday with the news.
Bruce Andrew Macfarlane, 46, died Friday in Kandahar, according to the Department of Defense, which did not provide information on how he died.
Macfarlane was assigned to the 1186th Transportation Company, 831st Transportation Battalion, which is based in Jacksonville.
On the battalion's Facebook page early Monday, Lt. Col. Marc Spencer posted a photograph of Macfarlane, along with a message that said he died conducting physical training.
Spencer wrote that he last saw Macfarlane on July 1.
"We will carry his memory with us always, with the respect and honor due our fallen comrade," the post said.
Macfarlane leaves behind his wife and two children, 15-year-old Conner, and 12-year-old Chloe. He was the manager of Outdoor Living Pools & Places in Oviedo.
While overseas, Macfarlane emailed Kristina every day and when she had not received anything Friday, she sent an email about 3 p.m. to check on him.
Two hours later, soldiers came to her home about his death.
She could not be reached for comment Monday. Whitley said the family had gone to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware to claim Macfarlane's body.
A Tennessee native, he joined the Army in 1988 and was released in 2000 from active duty before joining the reserves, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Whitley said Macfarlane, whose son was in the Boy Scouts and daughter was in the Girl Scouts, had recently gotten involved in orphanage work in Afghanistan. When the military support group at the Oviedo church found out, they began collecting items — erasers, pencils, glue sticks, crayons, etc. — to send to the orphanage.
Whitley will send the package this week to a chaplain working with the orphanage in Afghanistan.
"Everything will be sent in memory of Bruce Macfarlane," she said. "We're going to continue his good deeds."
The Department of Defense reports 2,020 U.S. servicemen and women have died in Afghanistan during "Operation Enduring Freedom."
|From Orlando My Fox myfoxorlando.com 07/10/12
Body of Oviedo soldier killed in Afghanistan returned to US
Posted: Jul 10, 2012 9:39 AM PDT
Updated: Jul 10, 2012 12:13 PM PDT
SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -
The body of Army Captain Bruce A. MacFarlane of Oviedo, who was killed last Friday in Kandahar, Afghanistan, was returned to the United States on Sunday at Dover Air Force Base.
On Tuesday MacFarlane's family released the following statement:
Army Captain Bruce A. MacFarlane, 46, passed away Friday, July 6th in Kandahar, Afghanistan while serving in the Reserves with the 1186th Transportation Brigade, 831st Transportation Battalion, as part of a logistics team. He had just rejoined the military in 2011, after being a
civilian for 10 years and running a small construction business with his wife in the Orlando area, as well as working as a contractor for the Department of the Army. Bruce, a devoted husband to Kristina MacFarlane, and loving father to 2 children, will be missed. He is also survived by his
parents John and Reba MacFarlane as well as four sisters.
Born in Memphis, TN, Bruce grew up in Central Florida, attending West Orange High School, and later graduated from the University of Central Florida with a business degree, where he was in the ROTC. In 1993, Bruce graduated from Ft. Rucker's Army Aviation School and was qualified to fly AH-64 Apache and AH-1 Cobra attack helicopters. He served with the 2-4 CAV, 4-159th Aviation Regiment and the 1-3D Aviation Battalion, 3D Infantry Division (Mechanized). Bruce was deployed to Kuwait as part of Operation Desert Thunder, and served as the Logistics Officer. After deployment, he became the Aviation Unit Maintenance Company Commander for the attack helicopter battalion of an XVIII Airborne Corps rapid deployment force. Bruce was passionate about being a soldier and a leader of men.
Bruce earned his Eagle Scout award, and prior to his deployment, enjoyed serving as an assistant scoutmaster to Boy Scout Troop 617 as well as Troop 306. As a lifelong Boy Scout, he had a sense of humor and wide knowledge base that gave him an easy rapport with people of all ages. Last year, Bruce had led a group of scouts on a canoeing expedition to the Keys, where they camped on an island for nearly a week. He loved passing on his knowledge of the outdoors to the younger scouts.
Bruce's family received him back to the USA with a Dignified Transfer befitting our fallen heroes on Sunday, July 8th at Dover Air Force Base. He had the heart of a soldier. It was very hard to leave his family, but he was passionate about serving his country.
|From News 4 JAX news4jax.com 07/09/12:
Sergeant remembers fallen soldier
Central Fla. soldier died Friday in Afghanistan
Published On: Jul 09 2012 03:10:15 PM EDT Updated On: Jul 10 2012 08:08:35 AM EDT
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -
A deployment ceremony was held in March for the Army Reserve's 1186th Transportation Company, 831st Transportation Battalion in Jacksonville as it left for Afghanistan.
Capt. Bruce MacFarlane, of Oviedo, one of the men in that unit, died Friday in Kandahar, Afghanistan. He was a 24-year military veteran.
"It kind of surprises you because you go, 'Oh, no. Man, I remember talking to him a couple months ago,'" said Sgt. Charles Fails, a 41-year veteran.
Fails shares a special bond with the fallen hero. The two left together in 2008, one of their many deployments to serve their country.
MacFarlane's unit left in March for Afghanistan to take the place of Fails' 1173rd unit. Each of these units' main mission in Afghanistan is to help the military pack up as the war winds down.
"When they came in, we were telling them how things were going, who was working with who," Fails said.
MacFarlane's death was non-combat related and is currently under investigation. He leaves behind his wife and two children.
The 1186th unit is heartbroken over the loss of their fellow soldier, and Fails said even after his 41 years of service, losing someone gets harder each time.
"You try and bring everybody back. You hope to bring everybody back," he said. "We do and always will take care of our own."
The rest of MacFarlane's unit is expected to return in January.
Copyright 2012 by News4Jax.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
|From The Stars and Stripes stripes.com 05/02/13:
Military kids have moment to shine
By BY MEREDITH TIBBETTS
Stars and Stripes
Published: May 2, 2013
ARLINGTON, Va. - Sports, camps and dance cannot replace the void children feel when their parents are deployed with the military.
But it can provide a distraction.
On April 26, Our Military Kids celebrated the star power of children who received grants through the organization to do the things they loved most. Four children from around the United States were honored at Boeing Government Operations in Virginia, along with an entire military family.
Special guests Gabrielle Douglas, 2012 Olympic gold medalist, and NASCAR driver Griffin Steinfeld delighted the children and the adults.
The Mansfield family is from North Carolina and were Our Military Kids Family of the Year. Three sisters - Abigail, 17, Bethany, 16, and Diana, 11 - received the grants when their father,Sgt. 1st ClassWalter Mansfield,was deployed to Kuwait with the Army National Guard.
Asked to sing on the spot, Abigail and Bethany quieted a room full of people,and left them in stunned silence. The teens were proud of their talent, which they had cultivated through voice lessons with a former opera performer,paid for with their grant.
Being around other military kids “does help in certains ways,” Abigail said. “But the grants help just as much.”
“We’re all in this together,” Bethany added.
Diana, too, was part of the performance, dancing on stage while her sisters performed.
Their brother, Corey, 12, had also received a grant for theater art, but did not perform during the event.
Other honorees include William Tsang, 7; Molly Frey, 12; Conner MacFarlane, 15; and Matthew Mund, 15. At least one parent for each honoree had been deployed.
Conner’s father, Capt.Bruce MacFarlane, never returned from deployment, dying in Kandahar, Afghanistan,just days before Connerwas supposed to leave for the Boy Scouts Philmont Scout Ranchin New Mexico. Conner attended the camp in honor of his father, and spoke during the ceremony about attending the camp and his father, while a slide show played in the background.
In addition to the Mansfield sisters singing, Matthew Mund, from California, took the mic and performed a rousing country song that had the audience clapping along. Matthew’s father, Marine Gunnery Sgt. William Mund, was injured in Iraq and is now disabled.
Mund used his grant for private vocal lessons and recently won the West Coast Country Music Association’s first place award in his age group as well as Entertainer of the Year. He is also a member of the Air Force junior ROTC program.
For information on the other two honorees Frey and Tsang, watch the video. It includes comments from Douglas and Steinfeld.
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