First Responder To Fort Hood Tragedy Describes Search
In the video above, Bradley Ellis recalls the search conditions the day of the training accident involving 12 Fort Hood soldiers from 3rd Battalion, 16th Field Artillery Regiment, 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division. 9 Soldiers lost their lives, while 3 were rescued.
As a member of the US Army Corps of Engineers, Ellis was one of the first responders who participated in the search for the soldiers swept away by swift current in the area of Owl Creek and East Range Road last Thursday.
Ellis remembered, "I was in a 23-foot vessel with a 225 horsepower engine on it, and I couldn’t keep up with the flow, I eventually had to turn around.”
Not only was the current swift enough to prevent the boat from keeping up, the water was so murky the instruments on board could hardly be used in the search the first day. Water levels at that point had already risen some 14 inches above normal levels.
A painting of nine soldiers has been placed at the gate of Owl Creek park as the community remembers these soldiers, and mourns their loss.