Neighbor Reflects on Life of Barksdale Major Killed In Guam Crash - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Neighbor Reflects on Life of Barksdale Major Killed In Guam Crash

Air Force Major Brent Williams, one of the six crewmembers aboard the B-52 that crashed. Air Force Major Brent Williams, one of the six crewmembers aboard the B-52 that crashed.

By Jonathan McCall - bio | email

BOSSIER CITY, LA (KSLA) - "I said goodbye to him, when he left, and Godspeed." They're simple words, but for Earl Blackburn they became the final words he would ever say to his friend, and neighbor, Air Force Maj. Brent Williams. "He was scheduled to come home today. His 45-day deployment was up."    

Williams was one of five from Barksdale, and one of six crew members the air force says did not survive when their plane crashed into the Philipine Sea off the coast of Guam Sunday night local time. "He was the finest man, always ready to give somebody a helping hand." Blackburn says was a caring neighbor who was respected and admired.

The single dad of two even cut Blackburn's lawn while he recovered from cancer, and he became more than just a neighbor, but more like a member of the family. "I've known him for two-and-a-half years but I felt like I've lost a brother. Blackburn and Williams' 13-year-old daughter even shared the same birthday. On our birthday they would bring me a present and we would always have something for her."

Blackburn says Williams' loss is a devastating blow, to the country, the military, and the neighborhood, and creates not only an emptiness next door, but in his heart as well. "He exemplified all I think are the high standards the military wants to portray."

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