SC National Guardsmen killed in Afghanistan returns home

Ryan Rawl, John Meador and Matthew Thomas
Ryan Rawl, John Meador and Matthew Thomas

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The remains of a National Guard soldier returned home on Friday.

Sgt. First Class Matthew Thomas of Easley was killed in Afghanistan last week. He was one of three soldiers killed from South Carolina.  It happened during a suicide bombing attack.

The bodies of 1st Lt. Ryan Rawl of Lexington and Spc. John Meador of Columbia returned to their families on Thursday.

"It is with deep regret that we announce the deaths of three of our South Carolina Guardsmen," said Maj. Gen. Robert E. Livingston, Jr., the state's Adjutant General. "These men died serving their country and I want to expresses my deepest sympathy and condolences to their families, who are the unsung heroes of our war effort.  These deaths are grim reminders that our Military, to include the South Carolina National Guard, is still in active combat in defense of our country.  We are privileged to have such heroes in our midst."

The three men were killed in Khowst City, Khowst Province, Afghanistan when their patrol was attacked by a suicide bomber.

Five South Carolina National Guard soldiers were also wounded.

All eight soldiers are assigned to the 133rd Military Police Company, headquartered in Timmonsville. Officials say the mission of the 133rd MP Company in Afghanistan is to train members of the Afghan Uniformed Police in Khowst Province. The unit deployed 170 soldiers to Afghanistan in November 2011.

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