Loftis, John Darin, Lt Col

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Last Rank
Lieutenant Colonel
Last Primary AFSC/MOS
86M0-Operations Management
Last AFSC Group
Special Duty Assignments
Primary Unit
2011-2012, 866th Air Expeditionary Squadron
Service Years
1996 - 2012
Foreign Language(s)
Officer Collar Insignia
Lieutenant Colonel

 Last Photo   Personal Details 

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Home State
Year of Birth
This Military Service Page was created/owned by SSgt Robert Bruce McClelland, Jr. to remember Loftis, John Darin, Lt Col.

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Casualty Info
Home Town
Paducah, Kentucky
Last Address
Kabul, Afghanistan

Casualty Date
Feb 25, 2012
Hostile, Died of Wounds
Gun, Small Arms Fire
Not Specified
Location of Interment
Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates
Section 60 Site 10392

 Official Badges 

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 Military Associations and Other Affiliations
GWOT Fallen
  2014, GWOT Fallen [Verified]

 Photo Album   (More...

 Ribbon Bar

Space Operations (Master)

 Unit Assignments/ Advancement Schools
Officer Training School (OTS)400th Missile Squadron17th Test SquadronInternational Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
Special Operations Units866th Air Expeditionary Squadron
  1996-1997, 13SX, Officer Training School (OTS)
  2003-2005, 400th Missile Squadron
  2005-2007, 17th Test Squadron
  2007-2009, International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)
  2009-2011, 1131st USAF Special Activities Squadron
  2011-2012, 866th Air Expeditionary Squadron
 Combat and Non-Combat Operations
  2001-2001 Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF)
 Colleges Attended 
Vanderbilt University
  1988-1992, Vanderbilt University
 Other News, Events and Photographs
  Nov 05, 2014, General Photos
 Additional Information
Last Known Activity
2/26/2012 - HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. (AFNS) -- An officer assigned to Air Force Special Operations Command died Saturday of wounds suffered from a gunshot in Kabul, Afghanistan.

Lieutenant Colonel John Darin Loftis, 866th Air Expeditionary Squadron, was deployed in support of OPERATION Enduring Freedom and working in the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan Ministry of the Interior with the AfPak Hands program as the chief plans advisor. The AfPak Hands program stood up in September 2009 to develop a cadre of specially trained U.S. servicemembers skilled in Afghan and Pakistani culture and language.

"Our deepest condolences go out to Darin's family during this difficult time," said Lt. Gen. Eric Fiel, AFSOC commander. "Our efforts are focused on helping them and we share in their sorrow.

"J.D. embodied the first SOF truth that humans are more important than hardware, and through his work with the Afghan people, he was undoubtedly bettering their society. We will never forget, and the Afghan people should never forget, of the valuable contributions he made to their country and community."

Loftis was a space and missile officer who became a regional affairs strategist in 2008. He entered the Air Force in 1996, receiving his commission through Officer Training School. Prior to deploying in March 2011, he had been assigned to the U.S. Air Force Special Operations School, Air Force Special Operations Training Center, Hurlburt Field, Fla.

Loftis was previously awarded the Bronze Star, Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal and Army Achievement Medal.

"Darin was a great American, but more importantly he was a devoted father to our two daughters, a loving husband and caring son," said his wife, Holly B. Loftis. "We'd like to thank our friends and community for all of your thoughts and prayers, and we ask the media to respect our privacy during this very difficult time."

While assigned to a Provincial Reconstruction Team in 2009, Loftis was said to "have gained so much public praise because he was fluent in Pashto...his ability to engage with the Afghans in their own language and earn their trust was a valuable weapon in the counterinsurgency fight," in an article by Staff Sgt. David Flaherty, 22nd Mobile Public Affairs Detachment.

"When the Afghan people see that an American is speaking Pashto, they're more inclined to open up to him, and that's the reason why he's so successful," said Mohammad Ashraf Nasari, the governor of Zabul province, Afghanistan. "He can go among the local population and get their impression of U.S. forces. He can do this better than any other soldier because he speaks their language and knows their culture."

Loftis spoke Pashto proficiently and had limited skills in Dari and Arabic. While deployed in 2009, he was given a Pashto name: Esan, meaning the quality of being generous.

The incident is under investigation by the International Security Assistance Force.
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