There were two versions of chapter 310. Which one do you like the best?
I opened the e-mails pertaining to my two deceased employees and started looking through them. The information on Albert Koons and his family was quite thorough especially for the short amount of time I gave them to collect it all. As to Phil Adams files, there was not much to work with, he had no living relatives on record that they could find. They even tried going the genealogy route. I have to say, my group might put Eric’s and Frank’s people to shame – Damn when the team goes digging for me they leave no stone unturned.
The first e-mail I looked at was labeled ‘Albert Koons JBG service Number SD1601695’. When I opened the email there was a list of attachments, with a statement from the gang, “BJ, this is the first time preparing a document of this magnitude for you. In regards to Albert Koons remains, at this time there are no attachments in regards to taking possession of his body, but we did get tentative information for his burial arrangements. We hope those answers come when Amy relays the necessary information to us. All the questions you asked us to find on Mr. Albert Koons that we could find are in these labeled files.
1) home address & Koons family tree
a. Home address
2) Family finances
a. Were family stood before the death
b. Why it stands now
c. Possible outcome
3) Albert Koons military records
4) Albert Koons Black Water/JBG records
5) Burial arrangements
File 1 home address & Koons family tree:
I flipped to the first attachment to find out a little bit about the family. As indicated, it was about the family members. It still hurts when I have to read a family file. Albert Koons left behind a family of 3 – a wife and 2 daughters 8 and 12. The general information on the family told us where and how we could contact them if we had to.
1340 K Street
Lancaster PA. 17573.
Home Tel. 717-555-3390
Albert koons: age 40 DOB: 01/13/1976
Husband & father DOD: 01/10/2016
JBG Employee – Service number SD1601695
Head office: Stationed at:
JBG Gym Morocco Embassy
1000 Summers Ln. Embassy Row
Kent Island Md. 21658 Rabat Morocco
410-404-5555 202- 235-1903 *Public affairs US State Department
Wife age 39 DOB: 03/28/1977
Name of work: Walmart Corporation USA
Address Walmart circle
Tel. 717-555-9000 * Lancaster Store
Daughter age 12 DOB: 09/15/2004
Name of school Lancaster Elementary
Address 1232 School Drive
Daughter age 8, DOB: 05/12/2008
Name of school Lancaster Elementary
Address 1232 School Drive
File 2 Family finances:
When I opened the second file labeled Family finances – at first this file did not sit well with me. Then after looking it over a few times I started to feel a little better. The team dug deep into the Koons financial situation. Not going to college and not having a financial background like Marcy and Jeanna – they wrote it in terms that I could understand with Vicky’s help if I needed
The Koons financials were typical of most middle class American families. They had a house with a mortgage, a car that they made payments on and credit debt that all families cannot live without. The Koons did not live paycheck to paycheck.
The team put in a few charts.
Income and savings:
Base salary $73,000
Hazard pay $73,000
$146,000 Note tax free international, work assignment
Linda Koons $46,000.00
Total income… $192,000.00
Banks, trust fund, stocks:
Annual House mortgage payment. $ 33600.00
Remaining BAL …$180,000.00
House insurance……… $ 1700.00
House Taxes ……….. $ 4850.00
Electric bill…………. $ 1800.00
Car payment annual…. $ 6780.00
Remaining BAL……$ 34000.00
Car insurance…………. $ 1250.00
Car taxes………………..$ 0
Total…………… $ 8030.00
Life insurance policy
Albert Koons ins. Policy… $ 75,000 annual cost $480.00
Linda Koons ins. Policy…. $ 75,000 annual cost $480.00
Annual cost $15000.00 currently paid by JBG
Changing for monthly bills:
Average Credit card debt…..$28,000 minimum payment $480.00 X12= $5760.00
Rough totals for the year
CYTD $8423.00 Albert
Total debt … ……..$242000.00
Total life insurance $350,000.00
With out food and clothing $71200.00
Food and clothing estimate $15000.00
Albert contributed two thirds directly into the family house hold with Mrs. Koons bringing in the remaining one third of their income. The rest of the money that Albert made went in to a joint investment portfolio that would be used for retirement. I noticed in case of a death, the Koons took out a life insurance policy on each other. According to Jeanna, the life insurance policy for Albert was $75,000. It was too low to be of much help on its own to Mrs. Koons. But when added to the Black Water policy of $275,000 that JBG picked up – the two life insurance policies combined at $350,000 to give Mrs. Koons an amount good enough to pay off the house and car with some money left over.
Jeanna projected the family finances after everything had settled down as long as Mrs. Koons continued receiving the same income. As long as the family did not have a devastating financial loss, the family will most likely make ends meet. The family could stay in the low middle class without ever touching the joint investment portfolio.
There were two things that stuck out that bothered me. The first was the family medical coverage, that plan was what Black water had – that sucked. We had not been able to replace it yet. It was by contract that held in place by orders of the bankruptcy court until Jan 1 the following year before we could change it over to our better coverage. The second was that there was no plan to help put her kids through college.
Another bright spot in Albert’s financial planning was that he chose to participate in Black Water’s company savings and thrift plan; he had contributed the maximum 3% that Black Water matched. At JBG the limit was 5% not that that would do him any good now. That plan now had $48,000 a little cushion but not much.
With the projections that Jeanna gave Mrs. Koons and her children were not well off but not on the street. The family needed some kind of help especially planning for the children’s college.
After reviewing their finances, I turned my attention to his military and Black Water/JBG’s records.
File 3: Albert Koons military records
Albert had spent 15 years in the army and received an honorable. I was a bit surprised that he did not do the full 20 to receive a decent military retirement package. He served in the first Desert Storm and did one tour in Afghanistan before working at the pentagon for 5 yrs.
At the same time his wife stayed with her girls in Pa. As to Albert’s military retirement income, I will have to ask the general that question. Because he only put in 15 out of the 20 years needed for a good retirement package, I don’t know what Mrs. Koons will receive. It won’t be as good as a 20 year deal.
File 4: Albert Koons Black Water/JBG records.
After an honorable discharge from the army, he joined the embassy security corps. Under Black Water he served 5 years and was given good evaluations. One thing that stands out is that he served at two different embassies. There were no evaluations under JBG because I had not scheduled a visit to the Rabat Morocco embassy.
File 5: Albert Koons burial arrangements:
This set of files was limited. It simply said that the Koons Family was members of the Lancaster Methodist Church.
At this point I gave up and took a bathroom break, upon returning – I dove into Phil Adams email labeled – Phil Adams JBG service #160194
When I opened Phil’s email I was surprised to see very little information. Instead of seeing a file with next of kin, and a burial request all I saw was a footnote. I did get his military and Black Water records.
As to Phil Adams personal life the office kept hitting dead ends. Phil’s records indicated that he was orphaned at an early age and had no siblings, as well as any living relatives. The office took the research one step further by doing a genealogy search. What bothered me the most was there was no record of religious beliefs. They had no luck there either. I did not like it but the VA might be the only solution to help him find his final resting place.
As to Phil’s military service, like Albert he had joined the Army after high school and went right to war and also served in the first Desert Storm. What was different was that Phil had served two tours in Afghanistan before entering the embassy corps as a security officer to continue serving his country under Black Water.
When looking at his finances, like me, he had invested wisely and saved almost every penny as I did into investment accounts. I bet he made Marcy proud, putting every Lincoln to good use. Phil also had the company life insurance policy for the $275,000 and made the beneficiary, “The Army’s Children’s College Fund.” This fund was set up to help children whose parent or parents were killed in action to attend college. What I noticed was that his funds were not added to any beneficiary. When I call the gym I will ask Jason and Jenny if we can tie his investment portfolio to the trust fund.
When I gave up reading I moved on to the phone calls. First of the calls was to Amy at the State Department, “Has anyone notified the families yet?” I asked because it was now two in the afternoon on the Eastern Shore.
“No; no one has been notified anyone yet. There has been no detailed information released to the media either, a press briefing is scheduled before tonight’s 6PM news cycle. The media is pushing hard for any information,” she replied.
“Amy, hold off on the names until I can notify the Koons family. I am sending representatives to the Albert Koons house. I want them to hear the news from us, not a news person knocking on their door. I will do what I can to reach your 6pm deadline,” I said. Thin I asked what the status of the bodies was.
“It is not looking like the bodies will be flown out for another day at least,” Amy added.
The next call was to the office; it was two in the afternoon on the shore. During the conference call I decided to send Ching Lee and Lisa to Lancaster. Marcy and Lorrie needed to stay in the office – Marcy and Lorrie because it was so hectic. As to Jenny, there was no way I would send her anywhere in her condition or allow her to be under any more stress then she already was. Ching Lee was the best choice because her staff had thing well under control. When it came to Lisa, that was easy, she didn’t need any gps, she knew her way around Lancaster like the back of her hand; she had every antique shop etched in her memory and she was compassionate, understanding and caring.
Also, Lisa had volunteered almost before I finished.
“Take clothes for a week – you need to be there as soon as you can. There is a press briefing is scheduled before tonight’s 6PM news cycle. Call the Lancaster Methodist Church from the plane, talk directly to the Pastor and ask him if the Koons family are members of his church. If they are, tell him there is an emergency and you need his assistance as soon as you arrive there,” I said.
“As it stands, it is going to be a couple of days before the bodies will leave Morocco and I assume to Dover AFB. With Phil Adams we will most likely have to work with the VA to have him buried at the Veterans Cemetery in Preston, unless some family comes forward,” I replied.
Four hours later I received an e-mail.
“BJ; Lisa and I met Pastor Timothy Bounds at the church at 4PM. We explained the tragedy and our desire to inform the family before the news of the story broke. Pastor Bounds followed us to the Koons house. BJ that was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. Linda turned into a basket case, and I didn’t fare much better – it was really bad. I am really glad we had Pastor Bounds with us; he was a miracle worker. I hope I never have to do something like this again.”
“I called Amy to tell her that the notification was taken care do.”
“Pastor Bounds and we are going to stay for a couple more hours then return in the morning. We have a room at the Lancaster Holiday North Motel. Let us know as soon as you get any information.” Love C Lee.
My heart ached for the family and Ching Lee. I had seen and been involved with so much death – in so many places – my emotions are now hardened to its effects.
Morning came quickly after a troubled night’s sleep. We were up early and enjoyed a good American breakfast by the ambassador’s personal chef. I wondered how they got the bacon in a land that considered pork the kiss of death. After breakfast we packed and headed back to the plane.
Looking out the window as we passed the King Khalid International airport, if one didn’t know there was an attack there yesterday you would think that a few plane just caught on fire. The bodies were gone, the fence repaired, all the vehicles gone too, the only things left were the carcasses of the three jetliners that were blown up.
It looked like they were in the process of scrapping them in place. There were dumpsters next to them and they were pumping the remaining fuel out of them. A big excavator with some kind of shear on the end of the boom was parked near by.
As we came to the gate, Captain Horsey was there to meet us. The base had put on double lock down as a result of yesterday’s attack. The security was so tight it took two levels of approval for non-military personnel to get on base.
It was eight hundred miles to Masqat Oman – our next stop on this trip – no more than a two hour flight. Masqat international Airport was spared the latest round of attacks. It was no wonder; they ran a very tight ship on security.
The process continued with more interviews with our employees and the embassy staff. Today was a little different. I sat in on the Embassy Security Review meeting that was ordered as a result of yesterday’s attack. This order was sent to embassies worldwide in order to complete a review today and upgrade their security protocol
It was three in the afternoon – Oman time – when I was finally able to have enough time to myself to make the first call of many back to the states. The first was to the gym, then Washington and finally Lancaster. It was 7AM eastern time.
My first call was to Jenny to see how she was doing and feeling. She had a good restful night and that made me feel a lot better. I asked about the mood in the office.
“It’s Solemn; Marcy is sending an all employee email this morning with what we know along with family information. It is also going to have a link to donate for the Koons family,” Jenny said.
My next call was to Marcy for a general update on everything.
“Everything is good, just wanting you home soon,” she replied.
“We will be home Tuesday morning. I think the Koons funeral will be before the end of the week I want to be there for that. What kind of progress is Jake and Dad making on the bullet stops? We are going to need them sooner than expected if we hire for the rapid response team with any kind of speed,” I replied.
“I know that some of the materials came yesterday and Bob’s Construction and the J&J welders are coming Friday,” Marcy replied.
Next on the list was Lorrie, even though I could look online I asked for an update on flights. Then I asked if either of the C130s would be back Wednesday and after.
“One will be back Wednesday morning but leaves again on Sunday, the other one is on an extended mission and won’t be back until midweek next week,” Lorrie replied.
The next call was to Amy for an update from the State Department.
“A C17 will pick up the four bodies from Morocco tomorrow and will go to Rhine Mein Air Force Base. The morgue there will do their best with what they have to work with. They will be there at least two days, then flown to Dover on Tuesday. Then they will be turned over to JBG,” Amy replied.
I had to remind myself that today was Friday. The bodies would be picked up on Saturday with two days in Germany, so the earliest a funeral could be held would be Wednesday or Thursday.
The next call was to Ching Lee to fill her and Lisa in on what I knew.
“Please be delicate but find out what funeral home the family wants to use,” I said.
The next call was to General McJames. I needed information and permissions that only he could arrange for picking up the bodies at Dover and I knew it would take several days to get approvals.
The day was nearly finished – one last duty to do and that was another state dinner with Oman’s rulers as guest.
Then Vicky and I spent the night as guests of the ambassador in the embassy guest room.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Joe H.