Pentagon identifies Army reservists killed in drone attack on US base in Jordan

BySomayeh Malekian and Kevin Shalvey ABCNews logo
Monday, January 29, 2024
Drone attack on US base in Jordan likely used American drone for cover: report
U.S. forces may have mistaken an enemy drone for an American one and let it pass unchallenged into a desert base in Jordan where it killed three U.S. troops and wounded dozens more

The Pentagon on Monday announced the names of the three Army reservists killed in the drone attack over the weekend on a U.S. base in Jordan near the border with Syria.

Pentagon deputy press secretary Sabrina Singh announced the names at a briefing Monday afternoon: Sgt. William Jerome Rivers, 46, of Carrollton, Georgia.; Spc. Kennedy Ladon Sanders, 24, of Waycross, Georgia.; and Spc. Breonna Alexsondria Moffett, 23, of Savannah, Georgia.

Rivers enlisted in the Army Reserve as an Interior Electrician in 2011, according to a statement from the Army Reserve Command. He completed a 9-month rotation to Iraq in 2018 as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, for which he received the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal with Campaign Star -- just one of many awards and decorations received during his years of service.

Patrick Simmons, godfather and cousin to Sanders, told ABC affiliate WJCL that Sanders was "very outgoing," saying she "loved to work with young kids. She was a basketball coach at the middle school -- always had a big smile, big heart."

"A young lady that had a lot of a lot of dreams and goals," Simmons said.

Sanders enlisted in 2019 as a Horizontal Construction Engineer. She completed an 8-month rotation to Djibouti for Operation Enduring Freedom. She received many awards and decorations during her time with the Army Reserves, including the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and others.

"Breonna was an amazing sister and was very well loved by her family and friends and always lit up a room," Moffett's mother, Francine, told ABC News.

Moffett also enlisted in 2019 as a Horizontal Construction Engineer. In 2023, she was assigned to the 718th Engineer Company, 926th Engineer Battalion, 926th Engineer Brigade, Fort Moore, Georgia. She has been awarded the National Defense Service Medal and the Army Service Ribbon for her service.

Rivers, Sanders and Moffett were assigned to the 718th Engineer Company, 926th Engineer Battalion, 926th Engineer Brigade, Fort Moore, Georgia.

The three reservists were killed Sunday when a one-way unmanned aerial system hit their container housing units where they were sleeping at the time.

"The loss of Sgt. William Jerome Rivers, Spc. Kennedy Ladon Sanders, and Spc. Breonna Alexsondria Moffett has left an indelible mark on the United States Army Reserve," Lt. Gen. Jody Daniels, Chief of Army Reserve and Commanding General U.S. Army Reserve Command, said. "On behalf of the Army Reserve, I share in the sorrow felt by their friends, family, and loved ones. Their service and sacrifice will not be forgotten, and we are committed to supporting those left behind in the wake of this tragedy."

The incident that killed the three reservists and injured at least 40 others is under investigation.