News>UPDATE: Scott AFB pilot killed in Afghanistan
Capt. Brandon Cyr, 28, a KC-135 instructor pilot, was among four crewmembers on board an MC-12 who were killed April 27, 2013, when their aircraft crashed in the Zabul province in southern Afghanistan. Cyr was a member of the 906th Air Refueling Squadron within the 375th Air Mobility Wing, its parent unit for administrative purposes. However, he flew alongside members of the Illinois Air National Guard's 126th Air Refueling Wing as part of the Air Force's Total Force Integration efforts, and as a result, the loss is deeply felt by members in both wings here, said Col. David Almand, 375th AMW commander. (courtesy photo)
Members of Team Scott display their affection for Capt. Brandon Cyr after learning about his death April 27, 2013 while serving in Afghanistan. He and three other Airmen were killed when their MC-12 crashed in the Zabul province. He was an active duty member assigned to the 906th Air Refueling Squadron within the 375th Air Mobility Wing here, and he flew KC-135 aircraft under the direction of the 126th Air Refueling Wing (Guard). (U.S. Air Force Photo/illustration by Airman Jaeda Waffer)
4/28/2013 - SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill -- The Department of Defense has confirmed that a pilot stationed here was among four crewmembers on board an MC-12 who were killed April 27 when their aircraft crashed in the Zabul province in southern Afghanistan.
Capt. Brandon Cyr, 28, a KC-135 instructor pilot, was a member of the 906th Air Refueling Squadron within the 375th Air Mobility Wing, its parent unit for administrative purposes. However, he flew alongside members of the Illinois Air National Guard's 126th Air Refueling Wing as part of the Air Force's Total Force Integration efforts, and as a result, the loss is deeply felt by members in both wings here, said Col. David Almand, 375th AMW commander.
Almand said, "He was an outstanding pilot and a dedicated Airman. Our hearts are heavy, and we're doing all that we can to provide support and comfort to members of his family during this difficult time. Our hearts also go out to families of the other Airmen who lost their lives as well."
Cyr was assigned here in 2009--part of an initial team of pilots who help to stand up the 906th ARS for the TFI effort, and most recently served as an executive officer for the 126th ARW commander, Col. Peter Nezamis. At the time of his death, he had earned more than 1,700 flying hours--900 of those in combat. He had received five Air Medals and was awarded an Achievement Medal during his time on active duty.
Although a child of a military parent who moved frequently, his family calls Oswego, Ill., home. The family resided in California for several years and that is where he graduated from the Arts Academy at Monterey High School. Afterwards, he received his Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice at San Francisco State University and was commissioned into the Air Force in September of 2006 after completing the ROTC program through the University of California/Berkley Det. 085. While waiting for his pilot training slot, he served as an executive officer at Edwards AFB, Calif. He then entered pilot training at Vance AFB, Okla., in July 2008, and upon graduation arrived at Scott AFB in September 2009. This deployment was Cyr's fourth since being stationed here--and his third time to Afghanistan. He had been flying in Afghanistan for three months when his plane went down.
Nezamis also extended his condolences to those who knew the captain.
"Brandon left his personal and professional mark on everything he did," he said. "You could not have spent five minutes in a room with him and not be impressed with his energy, desire, and quest for knowledge. 'Service Before Self' wasn't a few words written in a book or on a poster; he lived it on and off the installation. Brandon volunteered for this assignment, and it was this mission more than any other he wanted the most. For professional soldiers, there will never be a more noble honor than to sacrifice all you have and all you are to passionately fight for the cause greater than you. I deeply share in our grief, but am proud to have known Brandon and all he stood for. I will miss him a lot."
Base leadership also extended their condolences to the families of the other Airmen who were killed:
Capt. Reid K. Nishizuka, 30, of Kailua, Hawaii. He was assigned to the 427th Reconnaissance Squadron, Beale Air Force Base, Calif.
Staff Sgt. Richard A. Dickson, 24, of Rancho Cordova, Calif. He was assigned to the 306th Intelligence Squadron, Beale Air Force Base, Calif.
Staff Sgt. Daniel N. Fannin, 30, of Morehead, Ky. He was assigned to the 552nd Operations Support Squadron, Tinker Air Force Base, Okla.
They all had been deployed in support of NATO missions in the area, and initial reporting indicated there was no enemy activity in the area at the time. The cause of the crash is under investigation.
Visitation for Capt. Cyr will take place on Wednesday, May 8 from 4-8 p.m. at the Dunn Family Funeral Home with Crematory, 1801 Douglas Road Oswego, IL.
Funeral service will be held on Thursday, May 9 at 11 a.m. at St. Mark's Lutheran Church, 27 S Edgelawn Drive Aurora, IL.
Internment will take place at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA at a later date with full military honors.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that donations be made out to: The Capt. Brandon L Cyr Memorial Scholarship fund for AFJROTC students, 906 Air Refueling Squadron c/o Cindy Self, 2151 Golf Course Road, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois 62225.
5/4/2013 8:45:48 PM ET Captain You and your family are in my prayers. Than you for protecting our country and keeping us safe. in our prayers always Ed Mashmann
Ed Mashmann, Ridge NY
4/30/2013 4:32:16 PM ET Capt Cyr aka BI knew that you were a special person thought one today that you would be a general officer but now you will be an angel...I told you that you were special I miss you deeply my friend.
LaTonya Clay, Bahrain
4/30/2013 1:40:36 AM ET Rest in peace salute
TSgt C, Colorado
4/28/2013 9:49:45 PM ET The Nation lost a true American hero. I'll never forget you Brandon.