- Associated Press - Saturday, July 12, 2014

BLACK HAWK, S.D. (AP) - A Black Hawk man is leading soldiers performing one of the most dangerous jobs in the military - disabling roadside bombs in Afghanistan.

U.S. Army Lt. Col. Bobby Sadler says it’s a dream job, despite the dangers involved. Assuming command of Explosive Ordnance Disposal forces was a pivotal moment in his career and life, Salder told the Rapid City Journal (https://bit.ly/1mVkl76 ).

“The weight of the responsibility is felt daily,” he said through email. “I tell people I practice ‘humbled confidence.’”

Sadler’s wife, Marie, said she’s proud of her husband but also counting the days until he returns home.

“It almost feels surreal that he’s there in Afghanistan because I see him on my tablet or my computer,” she said. “A couple times it’s been interrupted from rocket attacks, and that hits home and makes it feel real.”

Sadler, who moved to Black Hawk last summer with his wife and daughter to be closer to family, enlisted in the Mississippi National Guard shortly after his 18th birthday and served nearly five years before earning a commission in the regular Army. His father and grandfathers served in the military, and both of his brothers, Matt and Jack, are military officers.

Sadler’s mother, Cheri Faline, said she is happy for her son even if she constantly worries about his safety.

“You think you’re handling things pretty well and then maybe the doorbell will ring unexpectedly and the hair stands up on the back of your neck, and it’s somebody selling something,” she said.

Roadside bombs have claimed fewer lives in recent years but they are still a lethal force in Afghanistan.

Six U.S. soldiers have been killed by improvised explosive devices in Afghanistan this year. The number has been decreasing from 252 in 2011, to 132 in 2012 and 52 in 2013, according to Operation Enduring Freedom statistics.

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Information from: Rapid City Journal, https://www.rapidcityjournal.com

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