Kenya US Military Base Attacked

In this photo taken Aug. 26, 2019 and released by the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Devin Boyer, 435th Air Expeditionary Wing photojournalist, salutes the flag during a ceremony signifying the change from tactical to enduring operations at Camp Simba, Manda Bay, Kenya. The al-Shabab extremist group said Sunday, Jan. 5, 2020 that it has attacked the Camp Simba military base used by U.S. and Kenyan troops in coastal Kenya, while Kenya's military says the attempted pre-dawn breach was repulsed and at least four attackers were killed. (Staff Sgt. Lexie West/U.S. Air Force via AP)

A U.S. solider recently stationed at Fort Rucker and from the Chicago area was among three people killed in an attack on a military base in Kenya.

The family of Henry Mayfield Jr. of Hazel Crest, Ill., confirmed his death Monday. The 23-year-old held the rank of Army specialist.

Two other Americans, both contractors with the U.S. Department of Defense, were also killed Sunday by al-Shabab extremists at Manda Bay Airfield.

“I last spoke with him New Year’s Day via FaceTime,” said Mayfield’s mother, Carmoneta Horton-Mayfield. “We discussed him not having to go to Somalia and he told me everything was good and safe at his base. He told me everything would be OK. Those were his last words to me.”

Mayfield joined the Army in 2018 after a year in college, said his father, Henry Mayfield Sr.

He said his son had been in Kenya since October, installing and maintaining heating and cooling systems.

“He was looking for better opportunities, but also he enjoyed serving,” Mayfield Sr. said. “He was that kind of kid. He would help. It fit him. It was good for him. He enjoyed being in the Army.”

Al-Shabab, based in neighboring Somalia, claimed responsibility for the assault.

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