PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — They’re called the Outlaw Platoon and they were honored at Friday night’s Pirates game.
The Army platoon fought on the dangerous border between Pakistan and Afghanistan. They were led into combat by a Pirate fan from Cranberry Township.
Capt. Sean Parnell was just 24 when he led an elite 40-man unit known as the Outlaws. They chased insurgents, searched for Osama bin Laden and became a family.
“We spent 485 days in combat and longest of any combat deployment of either of these two wars and I wanted America to know the sacrifice,” Parnell said.
Parnell has written a New York Times bestseller about those 485 days in Afghanistan called “Outlaw Platoon.”
The Pirates honored Parnell and flew in members of his platoon. Parnell threw out the first pitch.
It was a great honor for the Outlaw Platoon – 85 percent of whom suffered combat injuries in Afghanistan. Two members never returned home.
This weekend, Parnell wants people to remember the soldiers who remain in Afghanistan.
“They’ve got their boots on right now – they’re fighting, bleeding and dying for us and we need to spend this weekend in reflection and also celebration for who they are,” he said.