4 Jan 2002 – US Army SFC Nathan Ross Chapman, a member of the 1st Special Forces Group, is the first American service member killed in Afghanistan. While the news of his death was national news, the circumstances surrounding it were not. In 2015 the CIA finally acknowledged that he had been part of a secret team, Team Hotel, and was with that team when he was killed. He was part of early secretive CIA operations in Afghanistan and would be killed as a result of wounds while attempting to meet for talks with local Afghans. In 2015 the CIA would honor his death with a star on the CIA Memorial Wall, with no explanation offered to his family as to why it took so long and to why he was finally honored.
7 Jan 1948 – While flying a P-51 Mustang fighter, Captain Thomas F. Mantell would crash while in pursuit of a supposed UFO. The UFO was spotted in southern Kentucky and CPT Mantell along with several other pilots were tasked with investigating it. Descriptions of the object vary, but all report that is was a large object that hovered high in the air. As the pilots approached the UFO three of them would pull away, either for low fuel or for being called off. Mantell would continue to fly to the object, climbing high into the air without the appropriate equipment, mainly an oxygen mask. After Mantell broke 25,000 ft in altitude he passed out from lack of air and his plane quickly lost control, crashing in the ground near the Kentucky-Tennessee border. His death while investigating the UFO would change how the public treated UFOs. Before they were treated as something silly or just glib, his actions and death would lead to the public taking them more seriously as they were now seen as real and potentially hostile.
8 Jan 2005 – While conducting operations near Guam, the USS San Francisco collided with an undersea mountain. The submarine was traveling with outdated maps that did not indicate the mountain was there and would crash into it at full speed, at a depth of around 525 feet. The collision nearly sank the sub, with the front ballast tanks being destroyed and there was a desperate struggle to gain positive buoyancy to surface the ship. Over 90 crew members were injured in the crash, with one dying of his injuries the next day from a head wound. After the sub surfaced it was able to make it to Guam, being accompanied by several other ships.