The president and first lady Jill Biden were both greeted by Col. William C. McDonald, Vice Commander of the 89th Airlift Wing; Sarah Husemann, wife of Col. Matthew S. Husemann, Commander, 436th Airlift Wing; and Col. Chip W. Hollinger, commander of the Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations at Dover Air Force Base.
Eleven Marines, one Army soldier and a Navy corpsman died in a suicide bombing outside Hamid Karzai International Airport on Thursday. The ISIS-K group claimed responsibility for the attack seeking to disrupt the massive evacuation effort of Americans, Afghan allies, and third-party nationals outside the U.S.-held airport.
The fallen service members are Marines Staff Sgt. Darin T. Hoover, Sgt. Johanny Rosariopichardo, Sgt. Nicole L. Gee, Cpl. Hunter Lopez, Cpl. Daegan W. Page, Cpl. Humberto A. Sanchez, Lance Cpl. David L. Espinoza, Lance Cpl. Jared Schmitz, Lance Cp. Rylee J. McCollum, Lance Cpl. Dylan R. Merola, Lance Cpl. Kareem Nikoui, Navy Hospitalman Max Soviak, and Army Staff Sgt. Ryan Knauss.
The attack took place as U.S. forces were working to evacuate Americans and allies from Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover of the country earlier this month. At the same time, they have been working to ensure their own withdrawal by the end of the month.
According to the White House, the U.S. has evacuated and facilitated the evacuation of roughly 114,400 people since August 14.
Fox News’ Michael Ruiz contributed to this report.