From whitewater rafting on the Colorado River to sniper duty as a Navy SEAL during the capture of Tikrit, Glen Anthony Doherty always sought out action.
“Glen Doherty never shied from adventure,” President Obama said at the arrival ceremony Friday at Joint Base Andrews. Doherty was assigned to a State Department security detail.
“His fearlessness took many forms throughout his life but was always at his core,” his brother Greg Doherty said in a statement.
Doherty, 42, was the second of three children who grew up in a close-knit family in Winchester, Mass. He attended Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Arizona but left to become a “ski bum” at Snowbird, Utah, his brother said. He also worked as a whitewater rafting guide on the Colorado River.
Doherty joined the Navy in 1996, according to Navy records, becoming a SEAL with skills as a paramedic and a sniper. He was assigned to West Coast-based special warfare units, responding to the bombing of the USS Cole in 2000 and serving two tours in Iraq. He was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Combat Distinguishing Device.
Doherty left the Navy in 2005 as a petty officer first class and worked for private security firms in the region, including in Afghanistan, Pakistan and Yemen, generally returning every few months to the United States, where he “lived the life of Riley” visiting friends and family, according to Greg Doherty. “He was the glue that kept many social scenes together,” his brother added.
Mike Ritland, a friend and former SEAL, said of Doherty in a statement released by the family: “There is nothing he wouldn’t do to help those that were close to him, and he never met a stranger.”