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A Character Depicted in the Movie 'Lone Survivor' has Local Connection
Saturday, January 11th, 2014 -- 12:45 pm
Posted by Riley Hebert-News Director

-(Tucson News Now) Some of you may plan on seeing the new movie 'Lone Survivor' or you may have read the book, but did you know that a character depicted in the movie has a local connection here in Clark County?

According to Tucson News Now, Josh Appel, who lives in Tucson, Arizona, was a member of the 305th Rescue Squadron that was sent in during a rescue attempt of a four man Navy SEAL team that had been shot down in Afghanistan.

Josh Appel is the son-in-law of Doris Ehlers who grew up south of Neillsville.

The movie, 'Lone Survivor,' is the story of Lieutenant Michael Murphy and his four-man team in Afghanistan. Their reconnaissance mission was compromised by goat herders they let go. The team was surrounded by Taliban forces. Petty officer first class Marcus Luttrell was the lone survivor.

It was July 2nd, when Appel and his team flew through enemy fire to rescue Luttrell from an Afghan village.

Appel said, "We got them on board and I don't know if the pilots heard me or I actually got on the mic and said, 'Go go go,' but I was pretty adamant about getting out of there," he said. Two days later, on July 4, Appel and his team went back into enemy territory to recover the bodies of Luttrell's teammates. That doesn't make it into the movie, but Appel will never forget it.

Appel said, "That's the mission I thought for sure we were going to be shot down," he said, "because they knew we were in the area. They knew we were coming back."

Appel is glad that a movie has been made about these men so their story can be told and they can be remembered.

Today, Josh Appel is Doctor Josh Appel and he works in the ER at University Medical Center. He's started an international fundraiser in honor of the men who died, specifically Lieutenant Michael Murphy.

Check out this link below to see the full interview with Dr. Josh Appel.

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