EDWARDSVILLE, IL, USA U.S. Army SPC, COMPANY B, 3D BATTALION, 75TH INFANTRY, FORT BENNING, GA QALAT, AFGHANISTAN 02/18/2007
Recognizing that I volunteered as a Ranger, fully knowing the hazards of my chosen profession, I will always endeavor to uphold the prestige, honor, and high “esprit de corps” of my Ranger Regiment… – FIRST STANZA OF THE RANGER CREED
Private First Class Ryan C. Garbs died Feb. 18, 2007 in southeastern Afghanistan, when a MH-47E Chinook helicopter crashed while conducting operations in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. After radioing in an unexplained loss of power and engine failure, the twin-rotor Chinook went down in Zabul province, just 50 yards from the main Kabul-Kandahar highway. PFC Garbs and seven of the other 22 U.S. personnel aboard died. He was assigned to Company B, 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment from Fort Benning, Georgia.
Lieutenant Colonel Sean Jenkins, commander of the 3rd Ranger Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, confirmed to his parents that PFC Garbs had been aboard the CH-47 Chinook that crashed. Doug and Jill Garbs said their son joined the Army right after graduation from Edwardsville High School in 2005.
“He was focused pretty much on getting into the Army after school,” Doug Garbs told the Edwardsville Intelligencer on Monday. He had a goal, a purpose, a plan. He was committed to being an Army Ranger even as a junior in high school.” Mr. Garbs said he and his wife supported their son’s decision to join the Army.
Ryan completed basic training, advanced individual training as an Infantryman, and the United States Army Airborne School, all at Fort Benning, Georgia. Following graduation from the Ranger Indoctrination Program, he was assigned to 1st Platoon, B Company, 3d Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment in March 2006.
PFC Garbs was a veteran of both Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom. While assigned to 3rd Battalion, he served as a grenadier and riflemen. As a Ranger, Garbs distinguished himself as a member of the Army’s premier light infantry unit, supported the Global War on Terrorism and fought valiantly to “uphold the prestige, honor and high ‘esprit de corps’” of the Ranger Regiment.
His awards and decorations include the Army Service Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Combat Infantryman Badge and the Parachutist Badge. He was posthumously awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Meritorious Service Medal and Good Conduct Medal.
PFC Garbs is survived by his parents and his sister Melanie Neely of Fairfield, California.