I Got The News Today (IGTNT), which is one of the oldest continuous series on Daily Kos, provides members of this community a venue to pay their respects to those who have died as a result of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as in Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, Operation Inherent Resolve, Operation Resolute Support, Operation Joint Guardian and Operation Octave Shield. The IGTNT title is a reminder that far too often the family of an active duty service member receives the terrible news that their beloved has died.
The Department of Defense has announced the death of an Airman who was supporting Operation Freedom’s Sentinel.
Captain (Dr.) Kelliann Leli, 30, of Parlin, New Jersey, died November 27 in a non-combat related vehicle incident at Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates. The cause of the incident is under investigation.
She was assigned to the 60th Healthcare Operations Squadron, Travis Air Force Base, California.
~ DoD News Release
A graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Leli earned her commission in 2012 before completing her medical program, according to a news release from Travis AFB. She arrived at the base in June 2016, and was assigned to the Family Medicine Clinic at David Grant USAF Medical Center.
This was her first deployment. She was married to Capt. Jimmy Leli, a KC-10 Extender pilot in the 6th Aerial Refueling Squadron at Travis.
Col. Corey Simmons, 60th Air Mobility Wing commander, Travis AFB , said:
“Our entire Travis family is beyond heartbroken over the tragic loss of our teammate, Kelliann. We are thinking of and praying for all her loved ones during this unfathomable time.”
Brig. Gen. Larry Broadwell, 380th Air Expeditionary Wing Commander, said,
“Our Al Dhafra family is grieving the tragic loss of Capt. Kelliann Leli. She was an exceptional medic, officer, and teammate here, and her incredible presence will be deeply missed. I ask our deployed community to look after each other during this difficult time, to warmly remember the positive impact that Capt. Leli had on our team, and to keep her loved ones in your thoughts and prayers."
Erica Rossignol said on Facebook:
"Dr. Leli has always been so great to work with. She had such a calm, yet confident presence and could handle the most difficult situations with ease. She always took the time to listen and truly cared. She was one of a kind. This is a tragic loss for the entire community."
Leli's mother, Pat Seaman said,
"My daughter was a beautiful, smart, and caring patriot. Please keep us all in your prayer and thank you all for serving your country."
Gov Gavin Newsom:
On behalf of all Californians, Governor Gavin Newsom and First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom honor Air Force Captain Kelliann Leli, who bravely gave her life in service to our state and nation. The Governor and First Partner extend their deepest condolences to her family and friends at this difficult time. In memorial, Governor Newsom ordered that flags be flown at half-staff over the State Capitol.
Leli will be buried in California, where she lived with her husband, Jimmy. She is also survived by her parents.
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Rest in peace, Captain Kelliann Leli, you have served with honor and will be greatly missed.
About The IGTNT Series
"I Got the News Today" is a diary series intended to honor, respect, and remind us of the sacrifice of our US troops. Click here to see the series, which was begun by i dunno in 2004 and now is maintained by Sandy on Signal, i dunno, noweasels, blue jersey mom, Chacounne, twilight falling, SisTwo, SpamNunn, TrueBlueMajority, CalNM, Wide Awake in Kentucky, maggiejean, JaxDem, Joy of Fishes, SARBill and me, Ekaterin. These diaries are heartbreaking to write but are an important service to those who have died and show our community’s respect for them. Diaries about the fallen usually appear two days after their names are officially released, which allows time for the IGTNT team to find and tell their stories.
Please bear in mind that these diaries are read by friends and family of the service member(s) mentioned here. May all of our remembrances be full of compassion rather than politics.