FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. – Michelle Black is primarily focusing on her 9- and 11-year-old sons these days. She said she’s making sure, in the wake of their father’s death, they are physically and emotionally OK.
Special Forces soldier Bryan Black was among four soldiers killed in Niger earlier this month during a mission that remains somewhat unclear. The military is still trying to determine if the soldiers were randomly targeted or if they were led into an overwhelming ambush.
Michelle Black wants the nation to know her husband was more than a Special Forces soldier. He was also a master chess player and avid sportsman, she said, who spoke three languages, including Arabic and the local dialect in Niger, which made him something of a celebrity among his unit. She says most of all, he was an amazing husband and father.
“I know that I married a true hero, whether it would’ve been on the battlefield or just in life in general. When you have true moral integrity and you care that much for other people that you’re willing to put your life on the line,” she said, “you’re a hero whether it’s over there or here.”
Michelle Black said when it comes to the ongoing investigation into her husband’s death, the military is giving her guidance, but she’s not watching the news or following the day-to-day details. Someday, she said, she’ll need answers. But it won’t bring Bryan back.
She also said she was very aware of the controversy surrounding President Trump and his conversation with another Gold Star wife, whose husband was also killed in Niger. But she said her experience with the president was different.
“I’m very grateful that he called and he spoke to the kids. And I think that the excitement from that made it a little better, even if it was just for a minute,” she said. “So, yeah he was very gracious and I appreciate anyone who calls cause, like I said, that takes quite a bit of bravery to call into that kind of situation.”