Last patrol
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Last patrol in Afghanistan

Capt. Daniel Mitchell, 30, of Olympia, Wash., enters the Comanche Company command center at its outpost in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Spec. Phillip Riccio, 24, an infantryman with 3rd Platoon, Comanche Company. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Staff Sgt. Matthew McCrea draws path markings to look for in the field before the mission. They will show troops where to walk after an area has been checked for roadside bombs.  (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Members of the platoon listen to their lieutenant describe their upcoming mission. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Spec. Phillip Riccio keeps close watch during his last patrol in Afghanistan, in the village of Khogiano.  (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Spec. Kyle Klobuchar, 22, of Minnesota, center, checks the road. His comrades nicknamed him the Bomb Whisperer. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Treading, and watching, carefully during the patrol. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Spec. Jose Tovar, 21, of Texas takes part in the mission to investigate the disappearance of Lal Mohammad, the commander of a U.S.-trained militia in the area. At right is Mohammad’s younger brother, Sadar, who said Lal had been kidnapped by the Taliban. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
1st Lt. Aubrey Ingalls, 35, of Georgia talks to his men by radio as they begin the mission. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Many of the village children come out to greet the platoon, begging for pens or other trinkets. The troops warn them not to get too close, knowing that militants aren’t above using even children to detonate bombs. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Women seek medical attention from U.S. Army medics in Khogiano. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Spec. Garrett White, 22, of Santee, Calif., and others pray on a Sunday night in the chapel at Forward Operating Base Zangabad, in Kandahar province.  (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
The infantrymen of 3rd Platoon, Comanche Company haven’t lost a single man during their time in Kandahar, thanks in part to the work of Spec. Kyle Klobuchar. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)
Aaron Rose, 25, of Washington takes part in the patrol. On one final leg of the mission, a soldier spray-painted the word “win” in the dirt. (Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times)