An American Contractor in Afghanistan- The Man They Tried to Erase

By Bill Knight

Part I – The man they tried to erase

We all want to trust our government, and in particular the Military. This short series of articles will attempt to reveal facts about an incident in Afghanistan that may reveal corruption at the highest levels of the U.S. Army. It is corruption that costs the lives of good men, and makes U.S. Contractors expendable.

FOB Provincial Reserve before the attack

June 19, 2012, Kandahar, Afghanistan.

The headline read “Suicide attacks on Afghan, Nato bases in Afghanistan.”

 Nato’s US-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said the attackers breached the outer perimeter of the base but no coalition soldiers were killed.

But Faisal and provincial police chief General Abdul Raziq both said a foreigner had been killed and two wounded, with Faisal describing the fatality as a civilian contractor. Their nationalities were unclear.

“Their nationalities were unclear.” The article went on to say that the media couldn’t get “immediate confirmation” of the person who died.

The information on the incident at the 303rd  Military Police unit stationed at FOB Provincial Reserve in Kandahar, Afghanistan was sketchy. It was a unit made up of Army Reserve members from Jackson, Michigan, one U.S. Contractor – Thomas Boyle – and ANP- Afghan National Police- members along with interpreters.

 american contractor

FOB Provincial Reserve, Kandahar, Afghanistan after attack on June 19, 2012

The death of a hero

For the record, the man who perished was Thomas J. Boyle, an American Contractor, a United States Marine Veteran, and 30 year veteran of the Chicago Police Department. He was in Afghanistan as an employee of MPRI- Military Professional Resources, Inc- now called Engility Corporation- a private contracting firm used by the Department of Defense and others.  His job was to train Afghani police officers, a job which he enjoyed and performed to the best of his considerable abilities.

Also for the record, his name was not identified in any of the news media coverage of the “attack.” Why?

 How did Thomas Boyle die?

Mrs. Boyle, Thomas Boyle’s wife, began an investigation of her own when the Army failed to provide her with information about her husband’s death. Even the casualty officer, who was supposed to come to her home failed to do so, leaving her with many questions that no one seemed willing to answer.

“Lt ***** called me the day of Tom’s funeral here to say he would come to my home and give me an accounting of the attack in which my husband was killed.  By December of 2012 I still had no answers and wrote Lt ***** begging him for information. My last sentence was ‘ in truth there is peace – and I have none’. ***** wrote back that as soon as he was stateside he would come to my home. I learned later that he had returned to the U.S. in November. He was lying about his status and obviously the truth of my husband’s death was of little consequence to him. He never deployed again to Afghanistan.” Mrs. Boyle

But he was promoted, as were many other members of the 303rd…and we wonder why.

From Blast injuries to multiple gunshot wounds.

The Army’s first narrative of the events in Kandahar was that “insurgents” detonated a suicide vest. One of the documents listed the first cause of death as “blast injuries” for Mr. Boyle. A later death certificate was amended to say “multiple gunshot wounds,” after Mrs. Boyle obtained the autopsy photos and clearly deduced that no suicide vest was detonated.


Original death certificate showing blast injuries



Revised Death Certificate showing multiple gunshot wounds

The official line (one of two) was that Thomas was having a cigarette at the smoke shack when insurgents entered the base via another ANP driver who stated they were new recruits.  The four insurgents exited the vehicle and killed Capt. Qodous Kahn of the 3rd Kandak ANP, then split up and began to attack the American side of the FOB. Only that didn’t match the evidence.

Crime Scene photos should not exist if there was “no investigation.”

After viewing the crime scene photos obtained by Mrs. Boyle, it was apparent that Mr. Boyle’s body had been moved and staged. Tom Boyle did not die where his body was lying. One photo even depicts a removed bullet fragment identified as 5.56 – NATO rounds.  AK’s used by the insurgents were 7.62 in caliber.

Yet a letter from Ladd Tremain at the Army Medical Examiner’s office declared that there was NO BALLISTICS evidence retained in Mr. Boyle’s body, so there was no ballistics information to give her.

PR Crime Scene 013 (1)

Why was this bullet photographed and documented?

The Army’s Criminal Investigations Department (CID) claimed they did not conduct an investigation into Mr. Boyle’s death.  But that contradicts protocol when a civilian is killed overseas – the cause of death was always stated as ‘homicide.’  No investigation into the murder of an American?

Before removal to the Medical Examiner at Dover, Delaware, Mr. Boyle’s body was first moved to FOB Walton where it was documented that Lt ***** asked to view the body. Was anything done to Mr. Boyle’s body at that time?

Once stateside, Mr. Boyle’s body was held by the Medical Examiner’s office for 10 days.  During that time over 900 ct scans were performed.  Why? Was someone looking for the bullets that killed him to remove them before the body was transported home?

An exhumation in 2013 by Mrs. Boyle revealed more entrance wounds than exit wounds, yet there were “no ballistics.” More will be released in coming weeks. Who killed Thomas Boyle? The answer may be shocking.