Rest in peace to the fallen and my heart goes out to the friends and family of both men. Very tragic that these guys were going home when this happened. Michael was on his way to getting married this Valentines day.

A VBIED is what killed the two men, and no word on the condition of everyone else that was wounded. –Matt


Two Killed in Kabul, Afghanistan
February 10, 2014
On February 10, 2014, two DynCorp International personnel working on the Combined Security Transition Command – Afghanistan (CSTC-A) program were tragically killed in an explosion near Kabul, Afghanistan.
Paul Goins, 62, of Crosby, Texas, joined DI in February 2013. A veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, Mr. Goins had more than 35 years of experience in the correctional and compliance fields, working with the Department of Justice, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and in the private sector. His professional contributions were made at home in the United States, and abroad in Iraq and Afghanistan, where he worked to share his knowledge with developing countries.
Michael Hughes, 38, of Washington, Montana and Nevada, joined the DI team in Afghanistan in November 2010. Having worked for several years with the Department of Corrections in Washington State, Mr. Hughes’ areas of expertise included training, emergency management, incident command, as well as hostage and crisis negotiations.
DynCorp International chairman and chief executive officer Steve Gaffney commented, “The world lost two heroes in this attack. They volunteered to travel to places they had never been, to help people they had never met. I ask that you please keep them, along with their families, loved ones, and colleagues who continue to support the mission, in your thoughts and prayers.”

Under the CSTC-A contract with the U.S. Army, the Company provides mentoring, training, subject matter expertise and program support to CSTC-A staff and the Afghanistan Ministry of Defense (MOD). The program supports development of organizational capacity to assist the Afghanistan MOD and Afghan National Army forces in assuming full responsibility for their own security needs.
DynCorp International is a leading global services provider offering unique, tailored solutions for an ever-changing world. Built on more than six decades of experience as a trusted partner to commercial, government and military customers, DI provides sophisticated aviation, logistics, training, intelligence and operational solutions wherever we are needed.
Press release here.

Western Washington man killed in suicide car bomb in Afghanistan
February 11, 2014
Family members say Winlock native Michael Hughes was one of two civilian contractors killed in a suicide car bomb on Monday in Afghanistan.  It happened on the night before he was set to fly home.
The 38-year-old went to work in Kabul, Afghanistan back in 2010.  He is a former corrections officer at McNeil Island and was hired to train Afghans to run and reform their own prisons.
“At first it was going to be for a year, and we’re like okay, let’s get through the year, and then he went back again and again,” said his sister, Kathleen Alexander.  “He felt like his work was very worthwhile and very important.”
Family members say Hughes really believed in what he was doing.
“It was his biggest success, he told me he never felt like anything was more important than what he was doing over there,” said Kristine Zitny, another of Hughes’ sisters.
The women were emotional as they spoke to KING 5 from Zitny’s home in Tumwater.  They say this is something they’d always feared would happen, with their brother working in Afghanistan.
Making their loss even more difficult is the timing of his death.
“He was supposed to get on a plane that night,” said Zitny.  “He was going to be getting married.”
Hughes was set to marry his fiance on Valentine’s Day weekend in Las Vegas, where his fiance currently lives and Hughes planned to move once his work in Afghanistan was finished.
“It’s like he was so close to his dream and it was just taken,” said Zitny.
Their only comfort, right now, are the happy memories they shared with their brother.  The sisters recalled how he decided to run for mayor of his small hometown of Winlock when he was a senior in high school, because he wasn’t happy with the current city leadership.
They laughed when remembering the station wagon he bought for $75.
In those memories, the family says his spirit will be kept alive.  They hope his passion for his work will be kept alive by those who survived Monday’s attack.
“He was taken too young, and I just hope his work can be carried on, with the people he leaves behind,” said Alexander.  “I think he originally went over there as an adventure, but when he got there, he fell in love with the Afghanistan people, and he really wanted to change the world, and I really felt like he thought he could.”
Funeral arrangements have not yet been set, but the family says Hughes will be buried in Winlock.  They also say he was one of two civilian contractors killed during Monday’s suicide car bomb in Kabul.
Story here.