Country musician, ‘Black Hawk Down’ ranger to speak in Naples in ‘Salute to Veterans’

Keni Thomas, decorated Army veteran-turned-country musician, will speak in Naples on Nov. 3 during a “Salute to Veterans” event hosted by the Collier Republican Men’s Club.

Thomas, who grew up in Florida and graduated from the University of Florida, will give his account of the chaotic Battle of Mogadishu on Oct. 3, 1993, which inspired the book “Black Hawk Down,” and later its 2001 film adaptation.

Alongside comrades of Task Force Ranger, Thomas was deployed to Somalia to find and capture a criminal warlord, which resulted in an 18-hour fire fight. Nineteen Americans died and 78 were wounded in the worst urban combat seen by U.S. troops since World War II.

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