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Apr 30, 2013 8:38 PM by Josh Breslow

Father Calls Rowan County Airman Killed Overseas A "Hero"

The father of a Rowan County native killed over the weekend in Afghanistan says his son died a hero.

Daniel Fannin, 30, a graduate of Rowan County Senior High School was one of four men killed Saturday when the aircraft they were in crashed near Kandahar Airfield.

"My son was a hero. My son was a patriot. He loved what he did," Fannin's father, Darrell told LEX 18.

Darrell Fannin said his son joined the Air Force almost immediately after graduating high school.

"You don't ever expect to get that call. It's always somebody else, but it wasn't this time," said Fannin. "Everything's just really messed up right now. We don't know a whole lot about nothing."

Fannin said he was just getting to know his son who was stationed in Oklahoma with his wife. They all met for the first time in October 2011 and kept in touch over the internet.

"We were both scared to death," Fannin said of the meeting with his son. "But that's what I wanted. I wanted it for years."

Darrell Fannin said he encouraged his son to stay with the Air Force. He said he wished the two had more time together and could have developed a closer bond but that he is grateful for the time the two shared.

Fannin told LEX 18 that he is not sure if there will be a memorial service in both Kentucky and Oklahoma. He is also still unclear on when Fannin's body will be brought back to the US.

The cause of the crash that killed the four men remains under investigation. The US Defense Department said there were no reports of any enemy activity at the time.

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