Slain Major General Harold Greene Arrives Back in U.S.

Breaking News Emails

Get breaking news alerts and special reports. The news and stories that matter, delivered weekday mornings.

The body of Maj. Gen. Harold Greene, the two-star general killed while visiting Afghanistan's military academy, was returned Thursday to the United States. The body arrived at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware in what is known as a dignified transfer. The 55-year-old New York native became the highest-ranking fatality in the war in Afghanistan after an Afghan military police officer opened fire on his delegation on Tuesday. Mohammad Rafiqullah, 27, allegedly hid in a bathroom near the briefing with his NATO-supplied M16 assault rifle, according to an official who witnessed the shooting.

Seconds before the attack, Greene was laughing and joking with the group, the eyewitness told NBC News. Rafiqullah then emptied a magazine and switched to another during a three-minute barrage from the upstairs window. Greene was struck at least four times in the back. A bodyguard spotted the gunman and shot him twice in the face, killing him instantly, according to the eyewitness and a senior military official.

Major General Harold Greene speaking at the Iwo Jima Day ceremony in Boston in 2010.DAVID KAMM / US Army via EPA



— Andy Eckardt, Fazul Rahim, Courtney Kube and Alexander Smith