‘I see myself as helpless’: Knoxville man fears for family stuck in Afghanistan

Local News

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A Knoxville man is desperately trying to get his family out of Afghanistan. He’s called East Tennessee home for seven years, runs a successful business, and has seemingly achieved the American dream. Now he’s trying to help his family do the same.

For his family’s safety, his identity will not be revealed at this time. As his family waits at the Kabul Airport, he’s sharing his story, hoping leaders here in the United States can do something to help.

“They’re outside the gate. They’re just looking for a way to get in,” he said. With the Embassy closed, his family is unable to get the proper documents to travel.

“It’s my siblings, sisters and brothers. My mom and my dad and their little kids. We’re talking about two months old to 5 and 12-year-old kids.”

His status here in the states in the Army Reserves was once one of pride for his family, now it’s a death sentence.

“I never wanted to hide my identity as a US citizen or as a US Army soldier but words get out. There are people out there who will benefit from getting words around and that’s what the Taliban are looking for,” he said.

He says if the Taliban finds out his family is related to someone who works with the US government, they could be killed.

“I see myself as helpless. I’ve reached out to congressmen and senators begging for help,” he said.

With the death toll rising and American soldiers being evacuated, each day they’re stuck is excruciating. He says if he can get his family here, they will not be a burden.

“I’m a business owner and I can offer jobs to my family. I can provide housing for them. I don’t need any other help, I just need a visa for them and bring them here,” he said.

The US is still keeping its deadline of getting troops and Americans out of Afghanistan by August 31.

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