Airline cancels Colorado family’s flight out of Afghanistan

Local News

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (KDVR) — A Colorado man is doing everything he can right now to get his wife and kids home from Afghanistan since a rapid takeover of the Taliban in Kabul.

“My wife and my daughters for now are hiding in a house in Kabul,” the man, who wants to remain anonymous for safety reasons, said.

He said his wife and kids are in Afghanistan visiting family. But he said his wife called him from Kabul on Saturday evening crying and said the Taliban was all over the city and that she wanted to come home.

“I think it’s chaos. There are a lot of lives in danger,” the man said.

He said he booked a flight through Turkish Airlines for his family to return home to the U.S. for the next day, Sunday. But just a few hours before the flight, he said he received a text message from Turkish Airlines saying the flight was canceled.

“I’m worried about my wife and children,” he said.

U.S. citizens stuck in Kabul

The man reached out to fellow Coloradan Patrick Allen, a retired U.S. Army Special Forces colonel who also served in Afghanistan.

“The immediate concern is we have U.S. citizens — they were Afghan nationals who became U.S. citizens — who are now stuck in Kabul,” Allen said.

Allen said he has reached out U.S. Rep. Jason Crow to see if he can help in getting the man’s wife, children and his brother-in-law into the U.S.

“I have a lot of respect for the Afghans. They want a better life. I befriended several of them during the 12 months while I was over there, so I care about them,” Allen said.

Allen said he is hopeful that this man’s family will be able to return home, especially with the U.S. sending more troops in to help with the chaos at Kabul’s airport.

“These are fellow Coloradans and fellow Americans we are working with in the very immediate to get out of Kabul,” Allen said.

Will the U.S. ‘honor their promises’?

As he tried to help his family flee the country, the man stated he filled out a form through the U.S. Embassy to request help in getting his wife and daughters home, but he hasn’t been contacted from anyone there yet.

“I just want my family and all other families who helped U.S. forces to not be retaliated against,” the man said.

FILE – In this Friday, April 30, 2021, file photo former Afghan interpreters hold banners during a protest against the U.S. government and NATO in Kabul, Afghanistan. With American troops withdrawing from Afghanistan, pressure has been mounting for the Biden administration to plan a military evacuation of Afghans who supported U.S. military operations during two decades of war in their country. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib,File)

Allen said it could put their the family’s lives at risk if the Taliban finds out they are associated with American soldiers. He said these are people who helped U.S. soldiers, and they deserve to be able to come back to the U.S. safely.

“I especially care about my Afghan family here. I don’t just see me as a sponsor, they are my family. Their children are my grandchildren,” Allen said.

The man whose family is trapped in Afghanistan said the U.S. promised to help them if they helped the U.S. He said he was told the U.S. will help and take care of them, but if that doesn’t happen, he said it’s going to look bad on the country’s part.

“There will always be a question on the U.S. — if they are going to honor their promises,” he said.

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