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Memorial Day ceremony held in Baghdad to honor US Army soldiers killed in Iranian-backed drone attack

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May 27, 2024

U.S. Military personnel stationed in Baghdad, Iraq held a Memorial Day service Monday to honor the three U.S. Army soldiers who were killed in a drone attack in Jordan earlier this year. 

Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve presented the ceremonial wreath at the Memorial Day ceremony at the Union III base, in Baghdad’s Green Zone. Those in attendance paid their respects to the fallen service members. 

Staff Sgt. William Rivers, 46, Sgt. Kennedy Sanders, 24, and Sgt. Breonna Moffett, 23, were killed Jan. 28 after a drone attack by an Iranian proxy group hit Tower 22, a small U.S. outpost in northeast Jordan, on the Iraq, Syria, Jordan tri-border, where they were stationed. 

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The soldiers had been stationed at Tower 22 just across the border from Syria to support the mission to defeat ISIS. 

At its height, over 100,000 people lived there, blocked by Jordan from entering into the kingdom at a time when concerns about infiltration by the extremist group were rampant. Those concerns grew out of a 2016 car bomb attack there, that killed seven Jordanian border guards.

The camp has dwindled in the time since to some 7,500 people because of a lack of supplies, per United Nations estimates.

The base began as a Jordanian border observation outpost, then saw an increased U.S. presence after American forces entered Syria in late 2015. The small installation includes U.S. engineering, aviation, logistics and security troops with about 350 U.S. Army and Air Force personnel deployed there.

Rivers, Sanders and Moffett were all assigned to the 718th Engineer Company, an Army Reserve unit based in Fort Moore, Georgia, previously known as Fort Benning.

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