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Las Vegas area military families, veterans react to Afghanistan

Arlington Cemetery graves
Posted at 11:21 PM, Aug 26, 2021

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Suni Charbrow is planning a trip to Arlington Cemetery.

“It’s coming up on our 10-year anniversary that he was killed in Afghanistan.”

Her son, Spc. Douglas Green, was killed by the Taliban just two weeks before he was scheduled to return home. After hearing about the recent attack in Afghanistan, she says this year will be especially difficult as she can relate all too well with the families of the 13 soldiers killed in Kabul while on a mission to evacuate Americans and Afghans.

RELATED: Las Vegas veteran reacts to the Taliban takeover in Afghanistan

“It just brings back the day that those two men in uniform men came knocking at my door here in Summerlin and told me that Doug was killed. We all thought this was over; that no families were going to get that knock on their door.”

The events out of Kabul are also upsetting for Matthew DeFalco.

“It’s heartbreaking. It’s awful. Awful. Awful. Awful.”

DeFalco says he’s proud of the American men and women who served in the Middle East, but he says he also feels betrayed, after years of his service.

“I feel betrayed by the military in Afghanistan. I think that’s who’s to blame here. There’s nobody on the planet who’s ever done more to help the people in Afghanistan than American service members.”

In order to cope with all that’s happening, DeFalco says he meets with a group of veterans at a local gym, and they work out together. And he’s telling the community that there is a way to honor those who’ve served in this 20-year war.

“Just try and treat people better and make this country a better place to live.”

A similar sentiment from Suni. She started a nonprofit in Douglas’ name taking a cue from his final letter sent home; telling her that being kind to one another was the way to live life.

“Don’t judge someone until you walk a mile in their shoes. Don’t be so quick to judge. You don’t know the battles that they’re going through.”

Both Chabrow and DeFalco say the Southern Nevada veterans community is supportive and several groups are available for those looking to join.

Douglas J Green Memorial Foundation
Vegas Veterans
Gold Star Moms
Gold Star Wives, Las Vegas Chapter