The Norman Transcript

Headlines

July 4, 2011

Love, life and the price of independence

NANGARHAR PROVENCE, Afghanistan — On June 24, Army 1st Lt. Dimitri Del Castillo was 24 years old, a newlywed, and just starting his career as an infantry officer.

On June 25th, the 2009 West Point graduate was killed when his unit came under small arms fire in the Watahpur District of Kunar Province, Afghanistan.

Del Castillo was on patrol during a massive counter insurgency operation in the mountains of Kunar Province when his unit was attacked, sparking the intense firefight.

The news of the firefight reached his bride, Army 1st Lt. Kathleen Pulliam, just minutes after Del Castillo’s death. Pulliam was a few miles away at a forward operating base in Jalalabad. The couple had been assigned to different operating bases about 30 minutes apart by helicopter.

Del Castillo, a rifle platoon leader, was on the radio trying to coordinate help for his unit when he was mortally wounded, said retired Lt. Col. Nate Pulliam of Conyers, Ga., his father-in-law.

“He continued talking on the radio to get support,” the elder Pulliam said. “He died soon after getting hit, while remaining on the radio attempting to get fire support for the attack coming from multiple directions.”

Nate Pulliam said he was told 28 other soldiers were wounded in the attack. Also killed was Marine Sgt. Marlon E. Myrie of Jacksonville, N.C., according to military reports.

 

A budding romance

Kathleen Pulliam, or Katie as her friends know her, met Del Castillo during summer training after their freshman year at West Point. The U.S. Military Academy wasn’t the most conventional place to start their story, but there was nothing conventional about them.

“Katie liked Dimitri instantly, but I remember her playing hard-to-get,” said Army 1st Lt. Theresa Todd of Norman, one of Pulliam’s friends. Todd also is deployed to an outpost in Kandahar Province.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Headlines
  • Body 1 Police identify woman found dead Monday

    Norman police have identified a woman found dead in her home at 2202 Donna Drive Monday afternoon. Police responded at 1:25 p.m. to the residence of Cassandra Thompson, 30, after receiving a report that she had not shown up for work ...

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • Residents speak out about document regarding shelter photos

    Norman and metro-area residents showed up in overwhelming numbers, many in red shirts, for an Animal Shelter Oversight Board meeting Monday night demanding for their opinions to be heard....

    July 29, 2014

  • Mixon’s attorney says athlete acted in self-defense

    The attorney for Oklahoma running back Joe Mixon says the incident that left a 20-year-old female OU student with multiple facial fractures was a case of self-defense. “This past Friday morning, Joe Mixon found himself in a situation ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Cool snap brings heat relief to Oklahoma, Arkansas

    OKLAHOMA CITY — The dog days of summer are coming in with a whimper. Weather forecasters say a cold front headed for Oklahoma and Arkansas will bring unseasonably cool temperatures and a chance of rain through next week....

    July 29, 2014

  • Be ready for ‘prolonged’ Gaza war, prime minister says

    GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Signaling an escalation of Israel’s Gaza operation, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israelis Monday to be ready for a “prolonged” war, and the military warned Palestinians in three large neighborhoods to ...

    July 29, 2014

  • FBI defends search for Oklahoma City bombing video

    SALT LAKE CITY — The FBI thoroughly searched its archives and found no evidence that more videos of the Oklahoma City bombing exist, agency employees told a judge Monday in a trial that has rekindled questions about whether any others were ...

    July 29, 2014

  • County moves forward on nursing home bonds

    Cleveland County commissioners on Monday approved a resolution authoring a county trust to issue up to $15 million for a nursing home on the site of the former Whispering Pines nursing home at 501 E. Robinson St....

    July 29, 2014

  • Deal to improve health care costs $17B

    WASHINGTON — A bipartisan deal announced Monday would authorize about $17 billion to help veterans avoid long waits for health care, hire more doctors and nurses to treat veterans and make it easier to fire executives at the Department of ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Breast Care Center will relocate to HealthPlex

    The Norman Regional Health System will move its Breast Care Center to the HealthPlex campus, making it more accessible for patients, hospital officials said Monday. At its monthly board meeting, the Norman Regional Hospital Authority ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Little Axe Health Center hosting blood drive

    Norman-area blood donors this summer will not only save lives when they donate with Oklahoma Blood Institute (OBI), they’ll also get “Feel Cool” T-shirts and two tickets to the Oklahoma City Zoo....

    July 29, 2014