Member of the “Horse Soldiers’’ will tell the story Sept. 12

Member of the “Horse Soldiers’’ will tell the story Sept. 12
Evening at Flora-Bama includes whiskey tastings, food, music

If you have an interest in bourbon, and even more of a passion for American history, join Will Summers, a retired U.S. Army infantry officer, in the Flora-Bama tent on Sept. 12.
Tickets are $75 (available at and include a signed bottle of bourbon whiskey, a tasting of all three batches offered by Horse Soldier, Hors d’ oeuvres, and an opportunity to purchase additional bottles. Doors open at 5 p.m. The program is from 5:30-7 p.m., and food and bottle signings will follow. Mike Diamond takes the tent stage at 9 p.m.
The highlight of the evening is the opportunity to hear the story of the horse soliders from one of their own. A member of the 82nd Air Borne Division, Will was a member of the ODA 595 Special Forces team that was the first to land in Afghanistan in response to the 9/11 attacks.
The team’s historic and unconventional warfare experience earned them the moniker, “The Horse Soldiers.” The 2018 Hollywood feature 12 Strong detailed the story about how the team, under the leadership of a new captain, works with an Afghan warlord to take down the Taliban. None of the 12 soldiers died during the 2001 Afghanistan mission. It’s a miracle of sorts given what they faced, a feat that the movie does a good job conveying. One of the soldiers from the ODA 595 died later while serving in Iraq.
The Horse Soldiers is also a 1959 American adventure war western film set during the American Civil War directed by John Ford and starring John Wayne, William Holden and Constance Towers. That film was loosely based on Harold Sinclair’s 1956 novel of the same name, which in turn was based on the historic 17-day Grierson’s Raid and Battle of Newton’s Station in Mississippi during the Civil War.
Pictured: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld revealed this photo to the public on November 16, 2001. It shows U.S. soldiers with General Dostum and other Afghan fighters riding on horseback in the Darya Suf Valley (The arrows specify which of the men on horseback are U.S. Soldiers.