A senior airman from Barksdale Air Force Base has died as a result of injuries sustained in an Afghanistan.
Alaina Bell, wife of Senior Airman Bryan Bell, was notified Thursday (Jan. 5) afternoon that her husband had been killed by an explosive device in Afghanistan.
Preston Friedley, owner of the United Parcel Store on Shreveport-Barksdale Highway managed by Alaina Bell, said he received a call from Barksdale AFB Thursday asking him to be at the store when the news was delivered to Mrs. Bell.
Friedley said three people from Barksdale took Mrs. Bell to a private area in the store and delivered the news. "They stayed about an hour," said, adding, "Bryan's best friend also came, and he brought his mom with him, which was a very good thing."
Family friend, Jim Hawryliw told KTAL's sister station JET24/FOX66 in Erie, Pennsylvania. Bell was a volunteer firefighter who joined the Air Force in 2007.
Both Bryan and Alaina are from Pennsylvania, Friedley said, and they lived in base housing on Barksdale AFB.
Bell was a member of the 2nd Civil Engineering Squadron based at Barksdale, was an EOD (explosive ordinance disposal) Specialist.
Neither the U.S. Department of Defense, nor the U.S. Air Force would confirm Bell's death Thursday, but a USAF spokesman at the Pentagon said the official release of casualties is done within 24 hours of the notification of the next of kin.
Though details surrounding Bell's death have not been released pending notification of other family members, an EOD specialist is trained to detect, identify, render safe, recover and dispose of explosives and ordnance that are unsafe, including conventional military ordnance.
Hawryliw said it appears Bell was killed by an explosive device, but officials with the Department of Defense have not, as yet, confirmed that.
Click on the link below to see the Facebook page set up in memory of Bell: